Since the pandemic, the number of companies shifting towards the digitization of their finance and accounting departments has skyrocketed and as a result, organizations are turning to technical accounting consultants to help resolve the complex problems that come with restructuring their processes.
As a technical accounting consultant, you know too well that being the authority on accounting and reporting guidance is more than just delivering numbers—it requires big picture thinking, knowing your company inside and out, and the ability to apply your experience and knowledge when adapting to new and unique situations.
So when regulations, technology, and business practices constantly evolve, how do you stay ahead of the game as a technical accounting consultant?
Here are our 3 tips for success when hopping into a new role:
1. Drive your strategy by staying educated
Companies rely on you as a subject matter expert, especially when making proactive, transformational decisions. That means it’s your role to keep abreast of the latest accounting and finance standards and apply your knowledge within the context of your company’s bigger problems. Here are the two best ways in which you can stay educated.
Keep up with the Big 4
Known as the leading experts in the world of accounting, the “Big 4” set the stage for innovation and digital transformation in auditing, tax, and consulting. Following these firms is key to interpreting trends and knowing how they’ll affect your company:
More companies continue pushing their finance and accounting teams towards digitization, making Deloitte’s innovative and research-driven approach an incredible guide for technical accounting consultants. Use Deloitte Insights to explore and analyze trends, such as the effect of COVID-19 on automation strategies and how to adapt to remote work environments, to figure out a strategy that fits your company into the bigger picture.
Though PwC is known as the most traditional and conventional of the Big 4, don’t discount them. Their commitment to cultivating trust and transparency serves as a powerful example of moving into digitization with confidence.
Technical accounting consultants should always keep E&Y in their pocket as a trusted and reliable source. E&Y releases a weekly review containing valuable technical accounting guidance and updates surrounding the implications of changing SEC and FASB standards.
As a finalist for the International Accounting Bulletin’s Digital Innovation of the Year award, KPMG’s digital transformation model offers inspiring ideas for implementing business-first technology-based solutions. Their most recent initiative even involved a partnership with Microsoft, with the goal of helping companies achieve sustainable expansion.
Keep up with SEC and FASB guidelines
When it’s time for you to help your company build new processes, your deep understanding of these standards is crucial to laying the foundation and structuring systems that hold up to audits. Your goal should be to know how these standards will affect each of your company’s departments.
2. Be a student of your company
Being an expert in all things technical accounting without knowing the business’s operations inside and out won’t get you very far. You need to know how to apply your knowledge within the context of your company’s current processes, its immediate goals, and the roadmap for the future.
Being a student is especially pertinent to identifying opportunities and figuring out how to fit new systems into your company. As a strategic consultant, you should clearly understand your company’s overarching strategy and the intent behind transactions. For example, if your company wants to implement a new bonus plan, you need to know exactly how the accounting will change with the plan. Don’t be afraid to ask questions—your job is to make informed, confident recommendations.
Focus on building relationships
Your work can’t (and shouldn’t) exist within a vacuum. Get curious about the company and your potential as a consultant. Learn where your role stands in the bigger picture and how key accounting decisions trickle down to other departments.
At BVOH, we see that the most successful technical accounting consultants are the ones that focus on building relationships with the strategic decision makers. Doing so grants you valuable insight into the company and creates a sense of trust and open communication, both of which are crucial during times of transformation.
3. Learn how to think
As a problem solver, one of your greatest strengths won’t always be what you think; it’ll be your ability to know how to think. Since accounting has been a more traditional profession, the turn to digitalization can feel daunting for some companies. Oftentimes, leaders will turn to you to help provide certainty while navigating uncharted territory.
Obviously, you aren’t expected to be a fortune teller, but you should be able to use your experience to provide deep insights into potential opportunities and risks.
When it comes to learning how to think as a technical accounting consultant, here are a few things to consider:
- Are you able to apply your knowledge to assess and verify potential solutions?
- When presented with unfamiliar situations, can you still use your experience to identify trends and patterns?
- Can you pull insights from data to understand the implications of transactions or drive predictions?
- How do you respond with limited information or in rapidly changing work environments?
As a consultant, your goal should be to serve as a strategic guide amidst transformative changes. While critical thinking skills play an integral role, building meaningful connections with the company’s decision-makers will be vital in uncovering lasting solutions.
We want you to succeed
When you’re hired as a consultant, we want you to succeed. At BVOH, we believe hiring technical accounting consultants isn’t just about filling roles—it’s about building relationships to find creative solutions.
Connect with us today to learn more about our process.
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