Tuesday, September 29, 2015

Signposts: It's The End Of Accounting As We Know It

Well, it was a good run, 524 years since Pacioli.
From goingconcern:

In Order Save the Accounting Profession, It Has to Be Destroyed First

If you like hearing a broken record about the accounting profession's problems, look no further than this Accounting Today piece.
It lists dozens of quotes from people wringing their hands over the profession's three-headed monster of insurmountable obstacles: irrelevance (via technology), people and change. You'll read it and either think, "The accounting profession is pathetic," or, "Maybe I should start a firm to compete with these clowns."
Really! It paints a grim picture of firms that are still out there, clinging to the past:
“Technology is moving so fast that all the bean-counting that has been the heart and soul of the industry is disappearing fast,” warned 2020 Group chairman Chris Frederiksen, describing how staples of accounting like recording purchases, writing checks, invoicing and others have disappeared in the face of automation.
And also the offshoring of not only work, but knowledge: 
“It will not be long before automation will be able to handle most of the role of current CPAs,” said Sage senior director Ed Kless. “What computers can’t handle, offshoring will. It will not be long before there are more people in India more knowledgeable about the U.S. Tax Code than there are CPAs in the U.S.”
Ron Baker, of course, says that the accountants get the profession they deserve:
VeraSage Institute founder and value pricing proponent Ron Baker was even willing to doom the profession: “Unless our profession continuously innovates and adds value, we deserve irrelevancy,” he said. “What was the last innovation from the profession? We continue to avoid the tough issues, such as auditor independence. … CPAs need to help their customers make history, not just report on it.”

Paging Art Anderson, gonna make history, not report it.