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Small-Medium Practices Collaborating on Technology Innovation

The opportunity for firms to position themselves as advisors and provide high-level, value-add services demands state-of-the-art technology as the decisive factor in this transformation. Investing in firm efficiencies like data analytics, digital collaboration and other technologies that consulting requires, also creates the potential for revenue through innovative client solutions. Insufficient human and financial capital plague small and medium sized firms, challenging these technology investments.

Strategic Choices

Many industry professionals used to believe that only the largest firms could access data analytics, AI, bots, and RPA. In only a few years, however, technology has become much more affordable for mid-level firms. The challenge now becomes having the bandwidth and the confidence to vet, acquire and deploy new technology.

While it can be difficult to move the needle and make substantial advances with a firm’s tech stack, Paul Grossbard, Partner at MGA (aka Miller Grossbard Advisors) in Houston, Texas, believes that banding together with like-minded firms in an association or network, could provide a solution, by facilitating knowledge sharing of what works or doesn't work, and other lessons learned from experience with different vendors. “Human and financial capital is scarce for many firms. To stay relevant, independent, and financially prosperous, our unique value proposition would be enhanced by working with other, PrimeGlobal member firms that have the capacity for IT development and coordination to develop solutions.”

Talent shortages, pricing pressures, and complexity in the tax and audit world are unique challenges currently confronting the accounting profession. Many experts believe that if accounting firms do not invest in and implement state of the art technologies, the independent firms’ future will be at stake, unable to compete with eager PE firms and large national firms, who have deep pockets, are strategically anticipatory and technology driven.

Read more at the International Accounting Bulletin here

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