From Finding Qualified Staff to Keeping Up with The Regulatory Changes: The Biggest Issues Most CPA Firms Are Facing in 2024

From Finding Qualified Staff to Keeping Up with The Regulatory Changes: The Biggest Issues Most CPA Firms Are Facing in 2024

It was a truly exclusive experience to be present at the recently concluded AICPA and CIMA Engage 2024 in Las Vegas from 9th to 12th June, 2024. This event, considered as the pinnacle of the accounting industry, was a privilege to attend. We were thrilled to be among our peers and industry experts, and to have the opportunity to meet some of the industry’s most influential figures. No matter where you are in your accounting career, AICPA and CIMA Engage is a must-attend event.

While we had some insightful exchange of information throughout the event, we were fortunate enough to be a part of the recently concluded AICPA town hall, where they unveiled the results of their PCPS CPA Firm Top Issue Survey 2024. Many pressing issues were discussed and unearthed during the town hall, and every single one deserves to be discussed at length. For this blog, though, we have decided to dissect the findings of the PCPS CPA Firm Top Issue Survey 2024, which had some interesting conclusions, most of which we at Datamatics Business Solutions believe can be addressed to greater effect. We already have over 150+ CPAs from across the globe availing our services fruitfully; we can also replicate the same success for your firm. But that’s for later; let’s discuss the key findings of the PCPS CPA Firm Top Issue Survey 2024.

Before we move ahead and discuss the findings, let us give you the technical of the survey, to help you understand the findings better.

  • Total Respondents: 667
  • Nature of Survey: Biennial Survey
  • Categories of Participant –

    • Category 1 – Sole Practitioners
    • Category 2 – Firms with 2 – 5 professionals
    • Category 3 – Firms with 6 – 10 professionals
    • Category 4 – Firms with 11 – 20 Professionals
    • Category 5 – Firms with 21+ Professionals

With such comprehensive dataset, the findings of the survey are clearly eye opening. Now, let’s discuss the top issues facing the CPA firms in 2024.

#1 Finding Talent is Hard

Except for the sole practitioner’s category from the survey, for all remaining four categories, “Finding Qualified Staff” remains the most significant issue that their firms continue to face even halfway into 2024. It highlights the fact that while we might have put paper over the cracks when it comes to the ongoing talent crunch in the accounting world, the reality is that the crisis is far from over.

If you’re still grappling with the talent shortage, our CPA outsourcing services offer a viable solution. For sole practitioners, the complex tax regulations and their frequent changes remain a top task. This also holds true for Category 2 & 3 participants in the survey, although it was slightly less of a priority. By considering our services, you can free up your resources to focus on these crucial tasks, while we handle the rest.

#2 Challenges When Working with the IRS

Dealing with the IRS is a formidable task, a reality that anyone in the accounting industry can confirm. Our survey revealed that, regardless of firm size, the challenges of working with the IRS are consistently ranked as the most significant issues faced in day-to-day operations. This was particularly evident during the COVID-19 pandemic, when CPAs cited IRS issues as one of their top concerns.

An excellent way to overcome such challenges is to nurture and foster a solid relationship with IRS liaisons, constantly upskill, and stay updated on every procedural change in the tax laws. At Datamatics, we have tax experts who continuously follow the IRS updates and ensure they are aware of all the procedural changes coming their way. If you find it hard to stay updated and manage your everyday operations, a good way will be to partner with us and rest all your IRS woes.

#3 Talent Crunch Goes Beyond Hiring

While most businesses associate talent crunch with a shortage of finding and hiring the right talent, the AICPA survey establishes that that problem runs deeper than that. The participants from Category 3 (Firms with 6 – 10 professionals) and Category 4 (Firms with 11 – 20 Professionals) consider retaining and keeping the existing staff motivated as their 2ndbiggest task; developing the next generation of leaders remains among the top 5 concerns for firms from Category 2 and 3. Interestingly, the aging of owners/partners also featured in the top 5 concerns for firms in Category 3.

From the challenge of finding the right staff to hire, to the struggle of retaining the right talent, to the pressing issue of ageing of existing leaders, the talent problem in the accounting industry is not just a minor hiccup, but a widespread and significant issue. This is a problem that demands immediate attention and effective solutions. One such solution, which can alleviate the burden of talent management, is outsourcing. It not only relieves you of talent-related worries, but also ensures that you have the right talent at your disposal, without the need to fret over compensation, rewards, or other such concerns.

While these three were the top issues that marred the CPA firms, there were other issues that CPA firms listed as among their biggest tasks. Here are the top three that stood out for us in addition to the ones that we have already discussed above –

  • Identifying/Developing the next generation of leadership
  • Seasonality/Layering of deadlines
  • Leveraging technology to boost client service

Findings From Datamatics Business Solutions

Upon examining the findings from the survey at length, we at Datamatics Business Solutions conclude that the challenges faced by each of them are multifaceted, from sole practitioners to large CPA firms. While we all would like a magic wand to wave off all the issues at once, sadly, the industry has so many unique issues that it’s actually quite impossible to address them all at once.

However, the survey underscores that the industry’s common themes within the challenges faced by CPA firms remain staffing, regulatory compliance, and leveraging technology. By highlighting these themes, we at Datamatics Business Solutions find ourselves perfectly positioned to place ourselves as a solution to the most glaring industry problems hampering the efficiency and operation of the CPA industry. If, as a CPA practitioner or an owner/a partner in a CPA firm, you too are grappling with the same issues we highlighted above, write into us at [email protected], and we will be happy to assist you in every form we can.


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