Skip to main content

Looking for Valuant? You are in the right place!

Valuant is now Abrigo, giving you a single source to Manage Risk and Drive Growth

Make yourself at home – we hope you enjoy your new web experience.

Looking for DiCOM? You are in the right place!

DiCOM Software is now part of Abrigo, giving you a single source to Manage Risk and Drive Growth. Make yourself at home – we hope you enjoy your new web experience.

Is your accounting firm on pace to succeed in the future? Part 2

December 18, 2013
Read Time: 0 min

In Part 1, we discussed how firms that are considered pioneers in technology, by the CCH report, have the highest revenue growth and ranked significantly higher on many work environment scales. Today, we’ll talk about why they scored better based on staffing strategies and technology strengths. Here’s a brief recap of the four main profiles:

1) Pioneers: seek out the most efficient ways to solve current and future problems through technology

2) Early adopters are in touch with modern solutions, but wait to hear positive reviews from the pioneers

3) Mainstream users wait until it becomes an industry norm to adopt a solution

4) Late Adopters are far behind the technology bell curve and often resist change.

There are many ways that firms can improve their work environments, both for the employees and work flow efficiency. Some of the key differences where pioneers are well outperforming their peers are in effectively utilizing non-CPA administrative staffs, following a talent management program and implementing an advisory board for the next generation of firm leaders. While a good portion of the surveyed firms are using non-CPA administrative positions to handle routine tasks (75% percent), pioneers still scored 15percent higher than the mainstream/late adopters. The impact of this can immediately be seen in payroll expenses since non-CPA staff salaries are generally lower. However, pioneers rated significantly higher on having a talent management program, with 84 percent stating they have one in place, compared with just 20 percent of their mainstream/late adopter peers. Talent management programs are linked with significantly higher retention rates for top talents, so their usefulness goes beyond a current years expenses – these are the employees that will eventually run the firm.

While it may seem obvious that technology pioneers excel at technology strategies, let’s consider some advantages they have for future growth. In the CCH report, 99 percent of both pioneers and early adopters said they had a solid grasp on current technologies compared with just 73 percent of mainstream/late adopters. The latter slid even more when asked if they had the resources to manage implementation of new technologies, with only 64 percent saying they could, compared with 100 percent of pioneers and 90% of early adopters. This decline is a sign of slipping competitiveness. The most telling statistical difference was in a firm’s ability to quickly implement emerging strategies. Only 51 percent of mainstream/late adopters responded they had this ability. This is a very important statistic for a few reasons; not only are you behind the curve in respect to having the technology and the resources to be competitive, but you’re also losing the ability to catch up. To make the transition into being an early adopter or pioneer, here are a few steps to get you moving in the right direction:

1) Utilize non-CPA administrative employees

2) Develop a talent management program to help train, advise, and retain top talents

3) Make your firm more technology friendly. Even if you don’t adopt the latest and greatest technology, make sure you could make the transition smoothly when the time comes

4) Look at new technologies that will improve your competitiveness and efficiency

The more efficient you can be, the more room you’ll have to expand and try new technologies that impact the bottom line and help growth.

About the Author


Raleigh, N.C.-based Sageworks, a leading provider of lending, credit risk, and portfolio risk software that enables banks and credit unions to efficiently grow and improve the borrower experience, was founded in 1998. Using its platform, Sageworks analyzed over 11.5 million loans, aggregated the corresponding loan data, and created the largest

Full Bio

About Abrigo

Abrigo enables U.S. financial institutions to support their communities through technology that fights financial crime, grows loans and deposits, and optimizes risk. Abrigo's platform centralizes the institution's data, creates a digital user experience, ensures compliance, and delivers efficiency for scale and profitable growth.

Make Big Things Happen.