Being a technology accountant firm is not just another fancy title to have as a firm of accountants. It is fast becoming the only title that would exist in accounting as a profession in the near future. Some people see technology accountant as systems accountants.
Well, in as much as they both have similarities and lots of overlapping areas, there are some differences between a technology accountant and a systems accountant.
While the job of a systems accountant revolves around evaluating an organization’s financial system for compliance and efficiency, a technology accountant’s function deals more on collaborating with businesses to leverage and harness the power of business technology to the organization’s advantage. A technology accountant can do all that a systems accountant can do but not vice versa.
It is important to state here that no single individual can posses all the required knowledge to become a technology accountant. What we rather have is a firm of technology accountants and that is what this article is about. Although it will be nice if an individual becomes proficient in all the areas discussed in this post on how to become a technology accountant.
Process of becoming a technology accountant
The starting point is to become firm of chartered or certified or qualified accountants – whatever nomenclature your jurisdiction gives to a qualified accountant. This implies having chartered accountants in your full-time employment. After your firm has gathered some clientele bases, you then gradually start building the capabilities to deliver in the technology ecosystem.
Ten (10) Things you must know to become a technology accountant
To become a successful technology accountant, an accounting professional or firm of accountants must be knowledgeable in the following ten (10) domains:
- Coding: it is not uncommon for accountants to be very good at coding. In fact, many universities have started teaching programming to their accounting students. This step makes sense as learning to code as an accountant will not only make the accountant more marketable, it will also broaden the thinking horizon and capacity of the individual. Accounting firms that now offer coding services to their clientele as not doing so would be equivalent to allowing revenue to slip through their fingers. I mean, who is more positioned to provide coding solution to a business than the one who understands how business processes works?
- Technology standards: the rise and advancement in technology has given rise to issuance of more technology standards. Technology accountants are those that posses high working knowledge of various standards that have been issued to address different technology related problems. Providing professional services in ISO implementation by accounting firms is beginning to boom. Accountants with their broad in business operations are fantastically positioned to provide high quality assurance services to businesses needing technology standard services. Other standards that technology accountants can consider rendering include but not limited to: COBIT, ITIL, etc
- Fintech operations: different Fintech companies are springing up almost on a daily basis and many of these Fintech companies fail as quickly as they are floated. A general reason why these Fintech companies fail is because the founders lack the basics of business management. Hence, technology accountants come to their rescue. But how can that happen if the right expertise of fintech operations are not acquired? Well, that is why it is called a firm of technology accountants. Hire and retain staff with the right mix of skills to deliver in this area.
- Data manipulation: data manipulation and data analysis skill according to various employment agencies are in high demand. Businesses are really struggling to fill in vacancies in these positions. Accounting firm that wants to tap into this highly untapped area should upskill their staff. Udacity has a fantastic hand on nano degree course on data analyst and data science
- Smartphone functionality: the world is increasingly embracing mobile almost in everything including accounting package delivery. Issues do arise in the normal course of businesses making use of these mobile packages. From experience, the ICT guys do struggle with providing solutions to the numerous mobile application problems. Hence, technology accountants become very handy because they are very familiar with accounting terminologies and concepts thereby providing a speedier service to resolving the business problem.
- Back up and business continuity basics: technology accounting firm must have capability in business continuity planning and recovery. Technology accountants with the right skillsets are making a kill here. Get onboard as quickly as you can before it becomes overcrowded.
- Could services or SaaS cloud platform: Saas cloud platforms has become matured and as such has attracted many end users. Accountants who are technology savvy are quickly getting onboard. The area that is making the most wave for accountants is the area of configuration and little tweaking to meet the specific needs of the clients.
- Technology company taxation matters: government of many countries are repositioning themselves to ensure that all revenue leakages that have hitherto existed in technology company taxes are plugged. This move is increasingly putting tech businesses under the spotlight. Technology accountants who perfectly combines taxation and technology laws will be smiling to the bank while the non-IT savvy accounting firm will be busy looking for the next cost cut move to make in order to remain in business.
- Consulting mechanics for technology companies: business owners are looking for accountants who can wear many business issues related cap while consulting for them. Most of the issues faced by modern businesses has one technology undertone or the other. One of my professional colleagues specializes in helping organizations resolve IT related tax returns issue and he is never having a dull moment. If your firm of accountants is not yet positioned for this, better make hays while sun shine.
- Information security framework and implementations: the pervasiveness of technology has given rise to all sorts of IT security concern that has been giving managers some reason not to have a pleasant night rest. Technology accountants are providing durable and trusted solutions that meets and surpasses client’s expectations.
This has been a really long post considering the fact that this is my inaugural post on this accounting technology blog. I hope you find it useful? Thanks for stopping bye. Till I come your way next time.