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Accountant or Business Adviser - how the role is changing

Accountant or Business Adviser - how the role is changing



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min read

As business becomes increasingly complex, demands on accountants are becoming heavier. Many accountants are reporting that clients are asking a wider range of questions and demanding answers for many more issues than in years gone by. 


In many ways, the border be 


Customers today also expect their accountants to be far more involved in their business support. In an uncertain world, as the COVID-19 pandemic continues, they also expect their accountants to provide forecasts regarding the future - a notoriously difficult task!   


Accountants are having to add advice and consultancy to their traditional roles. Although this adds pressure, it also creates an opportunity to expand services and income streams. 


How does an accountant become a business advisor?  

Accountants say that keeping up with changes to laws and regulations is a full-time job, and becoming even more burdensome. Keeping clients up to date is a difficult task since it involves going through hundreds of pages. 


However, some accountants say that this is providing an opportunity to create new niche markets since clients need this huge amount of information tailored to their specific business needs. It needs to be delivered quickly and regularly. And with new technology and automation taking care of routine accounting tasks, accountants can now spend more of their time advising clients and adding value. 


The accountancy trade press points out that accountants would do well to embrace a more entrepreneurial way of thinking. This means not only providing advice to clients on how to meet current challenges, but also, going forward, how to create new and diverse revenue streams. A significant number of accounting companies have already made investments in upskilling and the technologies required to service these new client-driven demands for business advice. 


One example of these changes to business activities caused by the COVID-19 pandemic was alcoholic drink manufacturers changing production to hand sanitizers from beverages. This is the kind of out of the box advice provided by accountants that enabled them to increase their relevance – and their income.  


Technology pushing changes 

Technology  can provide the tools to enable accountants to analyse, track, compare changes and support business management. This is critical in enabling accountants to provide proposals to clients. Looking to the future, the accounting trade can expect to see continuing technological changes that will enable them to take on an advisory role for new and potential clients. 


Accountants are increasingly turning to technology to help them bring fresh value to their businesses and free up time to focus on their clients needs, according to this major report in Accountants Today


In conclusion 

The coronavirus outbreak and technological disruption have come together to create a new type of accountant who has more time to consider new options for his clients. Accountants may well want to take advantage of these changes to take on new roles in the business away from traditional accounting tasks. 

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