You’ve seemingly heard about—or skilled firsthand—a scarcity of accountants. So what offers? The place did all of the accountants and potential accountants go? And what are you able to do if you happen to expertise expertise shortages in your agency?
Why is there a scarcity of accountants?
Two components contribute to the accountant scarcity. One, CPAs are retiring or leaving the business early. And two, there’s a lower within the variety of accountants getting into the workforce.
Right here’s a more in-depth take a look at these causes for the accounting labor scarcity.
1. CPAs are retiring or leaving the business early
In keeping with a 2022 The Wall Road Journal article, over 300,000 U.S. accountants and auditors left their jobs previously two years, a 17% decline.
There are a couple of causes for this mass exodus:
- 75% of the CPA workforce reached retirement age in 2020
- Skilled accountants are taking jobs in finance and expertise, in response to SHRM
- Some accountants left through the Nice Resignation, in response to Enterprise Insider
2. There’s a lower within the variety of accountants getting into the workforce
Concurrently this mass exodus from the sphere, there’s not sufficient new expertise coming in to fill the gaps.
In keeping with a current report from the AICPA (American Institute of CPAs®), the variety of accounting diploma completions was decrease within the educational 12 months 2019-2020 than in earlier years. In 2019-2020, the full variety of Bachelor’s and Grasp’s accounting diploma completions was 72,923, the bottom in a decade.
Along with fewer accounting diploma completions, the AICPA additionally noticed a drop within the variety of CPA examination candidates. Between 2019 and 2020, there was a 17% lower in new CPA examination candidates, which the AICPA attributed to the pandemic.
Though the pandemic is a major cause for the lower in accountants and CPAs, it’s not the one one. Different causes embrace:
- Pay: In keeping with SHRM, the lure of higher pay can contribute to the scarcity of accountants. Monetary accountants’ common wage is $56,320, which may be decrease than in different enterprise areas.
- Busy season: When individuals consider accounting, busy seasons—and the lengthy hours that include it—usually come to thoughts. When is busy season for accountants? The busy season typically happens through the first quarter, and the lengthy hours (generally as much as 100 hours per week) may be offputting to college students.
- Stigma: Accounting can get a nasty repute as “boring” by individuals who suppose it is just monotonous knowledge entry and different tedious duties.
- Hurdles: Different hurdles (e.g., the excessive credit-hour requirement to take the CPA examination) may hinder college students from becoming a member of the sphere.
What’s the AICPA doing concerning the accounting expertise scarcity?
The AICPA made attracting new expertise to the accounting occupation—particularly CPAs—one among their 2022 major strategic initiatives. These initiatives embrace attracting extra highschool and school college students, offering schooling and help companies, and collaborating with these working with CPA candidates.
As well as, the CPA examination is getting a facelift in 2024 … or not less than a number of adjustments to the infrastructure. In keeping with CPA Apply Advisor, there can be a brand new infrastructure (together with eliminating the essay query), new self-discipline sections, and a higher concentrate on expertise, equivalent to automated instruments. The emphasis on expertise requires candidates to be proficient in advances within the accounting subject.
What are you able to do if a scarcity impacts your agency?
If the accounting expertise scarcity impacts you, your intuition could also be to work lengthy hours and keep away from taking break day work.
However you could have choices that can assist you maximize your effectivity and get extra palms on deck.
1. Use expertise
How usually do you utilize expertise in your day-to-day?
Like many industries, technological developments have propelled accounting into a brand new period. Gone are the times of pen and paper and spreadsheets. Now, accountants can use revolutionary accounting and payroll software program expertise to do the heavy lifting.
A PWC report referred to as Hello, Robotic discovered that expertise and automation unencumber these “boring” duties like transactional and knowledge entry duties. This may allow you to concentrate on “higher-value work” like evaluation and compliance, in response to AICPA’s vice chairman of agency companies.
Nonetheless resisting expertise in accounting? Do not forget that expertise will turn out to be a part of the official CPA examination in 2024, solidifying it as integral.
Know-how in accounting is rapidly turning into the usual, which is nice information for companies going through an accounting labor scarcity.
By way of expertise like payroll software program, you may provide payroll companies to purchasers with out getting slowed down by handbook calculations, payroll tax filings, and tax deposits. Payroll for accountants handles the main points so you may concentrate on the higher-value work—even if you happen to’re coping with a labor scarcity at your agency.
2. Get versatile
Staff, together with accountants, worth the pliability of distant work. For those who’re combating a labor scarcity at your agency, think about letting staff work partially or absolutely remotely.
Keep related with distant accountants by way of on-line chat instruments (e.g., Slack) and video conferencing programs (e.g., Zoom). Use accounting software program and payroll software program with limitless customers and user-based permissions to deal with workloads digitally.
3. Broaden your hiring internet
The variety of accounting graduates within the 2019-2020 educational 12 months might have been low, however AICPA discovered that accounting packages are optimistic about future enrollments.
For those who need assistance hiring accountants, think about recruiting college students enrolled in accounting packages. In keeping with SHRM, companies are hiring college students who full Accounting 101 and Accounting 102 to fill part-time jobs and internships.
You’ll be able to recruit accounting college students by talking to enterprise courses and attending profession gala’s at your native college.
4. Supply schooling help
Contemplate providing schooling help if you happen to rent accounting college students to fill part-time jobs and internships. This worker profit will help you recruit and retain college students (and different staff).
Training help, or tuition reimbursement, allows you to pay as much as $5,250 tax-free towards an worker’s qualifying schooling bills. The tax-free quantity applies to tuition, charges, books, provides, and gear. And thru 2025, you may make tax-free pupil mortgage funds as much as the IRS restrict.
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