As technology advances at a startling (but nonetheless exciting) rate few of us are able to keep with, the possibilities for enhancing tax practices seem limitless.

By embracing technologies such as automation and AI, and making strategic alterations not just to the way in which they run their operations, but to the way in which teams are managed, CPA firms can grow exponentially and provide their clients with high quality services. And, with millennials occupying a significant chunk of the modern workforce, their demands and expectations have helped to transform professional services such as accounting.

But for those who aren’t millennials and might not be so tech savvy, how can you adopt a next-gen attitude and give emerging technologies the respect and space in modern accounting, they so rightly deserve?

You can make a start by gaining a better understanding of the crux of the things driving your CPA firm through a series of questions, the most important of which, are demonstrated below:

  • Are there any legacy metrics that might be slowing us down?

Revealing what your entire team should be working towards, your Key Performance Indicators, or KPIs need to be examined in detail. Find out when they were formed, during what time, and whether they’re still relevant now.

The majority of CPA firms nowadays use finance and accounting KPIs that were put together years ago, and often during a period in which economic growth was sustainable. But do your profit-and-loss KPIs such as net profit or gross margin, for example, still align with the way in which your firm needs to behave in order to evolve?

Data is certainly essential, but more so are the kind and quality of datasets that we need to measure in order to succeed. Spend time figuring out new metrics and dashboards that can help your firm meet its expectations as it evolves, keeping in mind your firms plans for the future, along with its existing expectations.

  • Does our pricing reflect the quality and impact of our services?

Historically, CPA firms have usually been able to keep their profits healthy, but with the current economic climate, that trend is on a slippery slope. If there is a significant fall in profits, the firm may experience a shortage of resources that does nothing to help them cope with any extra work they may take on.  

A high-performing CPA firm regularly assesses its pricing structure to gain the best return on investments, costs, risks and rewards.

  • If competitors are aggressive, will our current business model be sustainable?

Big companies with big customer expectations, are continually evolving and forcing technological disruption, and it seems no industry is safe where such behaviors are concerned. With all manner of services being delivered to customers in highly innovative and creative ways, your CPA firm must be able not just to hold its head above water in such an aggressively competitive environment, but show that it can also be innovative and deliver more than what is merely expected of it.

  • If we wanted to change direction, what would need to be true?

A lot of important decisions made by CPA firms are based upon a number of assumptions, some of which may or may not be true. In order to make the kind of decisions that can facilitate enhanced performance, increased efficiency, greater customer satisfaction, and a healthier ROI, you must scrutinize all decisions that are made, and test all assumptions thoroughly.

Companies that succeed are always asking questions of themselves, and never making assumptions that can’t be backed up by facts. To help your team grow and meet client demand, you must embrace technology, and never stop questioning every decision you make.