Bob Kafafian, president and CEO of The Kafafian Group Inc., stops by to explain what the concept of using management information to make informed decisions really means for CPAs working in the financial institutions industry. He also discusses how measurement trends and statistics support these decisions. Listen in, and also note that Bob will speak in greater depth on this issue at PICPA’s 2017 Financial Institutions Conference on Sept. 25. Register to attend in person or via webcast at www.picpa.org/fic.
Lauren Zaccarelli, chair of the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue’s Board of Appeals, discusses changes to the appeal schedule and petition form. She also provides some best practices for CPAs when working with the board on behalf of clients or themselves.
It’s one thing to have a dissenting opinion toward ideas put forth by the Government Accounting Standards Board. It’s quite another to tell them about your opinion to their collective face and then have them ask you why you feel this way. Pamela Baker, a partner with Barbacane Thornton & Company LLP, got to experience this and lived to tell the tale. Today, she shares her insights with CPA Conversations.
Social media can be a powerful tool for CPAs. LinkedIn, for example, has the potential to showcase CPAs as trusted professionals in their field. Therefore, you shouldn’t limit it to being a digital representation of a résumé. Optimize its use to help you gain connections and draw business. CPA Conversations recently spoke with Donna Serdula, founder and president of Vision Board Media and author of LinkedIn Profile Optimization for Dummies, about how to make LinkedIn work for CPAs.
Act 32 of 2008 helped fix the local tax collection system in Pennsylvania, but some unintended consequences arose from the law. David Caplan, CPA, is a sole practitioner in Lafayette Hill, Pa., and a PICPA member who has advocated passionately for corrections to be made to ensure greater efficiency. He explains what’s needed in this episode. Learn more about Act 32 and its potential amendments at www.picpa.org/act32.
Earlier this year, Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf called for legislation that would institute mandatory unitary combined reporting. Vito Cosmo, CPA, managing director of state and local taxes at Grant Thornton in Philadelphia and a member of PICPA’s State Taxation Committee, explains what this means for Pennsylvania businesses and CPAs.
Michael Decker, AICPA vice president of examinations, and James Suh, director of continuous improvement and analytics with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA), highlight the major changes made to the CPA Exam and why those changes were necessary. While these alterations are still new, Decker and Suh explain some of the trends they are seeing among recent test takers. For more information on the new CPA Exam, visit www.picpa.org/cpaexam.
Business professionals are familiar with the traditional LLCs, C Corps, and S Corps. But if you have a desire to make sure that your firm is as socially and environmentally conscious as possible, there is a fourth type of corporation of which you should be aware: the B Corp. Scott Kregel’s firm, Kregel & Company CPA, is a B Corp, and on this edition of CPA Conversations he tells us why they believe the certification is so important.
There are many career paths a CPA designation can take you down. One of them is the role of fraud investigator, which is how PICPA member Billy Ebersole makes his living. On this episode of CPA Conversations, Ebersole, a special agent with the Federal Bureau of Investigation and a presenter at the PICPA Government Accounting Conference, walks us through the process of fraud investigation, including the level of danger and class of criminal to be confronted.
When it comes to a CPA firm’s success, one of the biggest factors is how the partners conduct themselves. While someone as successful as a partner may be hesitant to adjust, such improvements could mean the difference between a long-term relationship with a client and a client kicking the tires on a new accounting firm. To discuss the impact that optimal partner behavior can have on the bottom line, CPA Conversations sat down with Carolyn Carlson and Richard Stanger of StangerCarlson in New York City.
Mark A. Balistrieri and Daniel L. Westover, both Pittsburgh CPAs, discuss two hot-button issues regarding Pennsylvania’s sales and use tax code – changes to large refund requests and the canned computer software and digital property tax. They also discuss other sales and use tax challenges facing their clients and what could be coming down the pike. These topics will be covered more extensively at PICPA’s 2017 Conference on Pennsylvania Taxes held in Cranberry on July 21, in Harrisburg on July 24, and in Malvern or via webcast on July 25.
With accounting firms looking to expand into new areas, such as consulting services, business valuation, and predictive analytics, it is only natural that the things you should address in your liability coverage would increase as well. In a podcast based on his summer 2017 Pennsylvania CPA Journal Liability Lessons column, Jonathan Ziss discusses the areas that growing companies must keep an eye on to protect themselves.
CPAs understandably can get weary when considering all the effects automation could have on the accounting industry. Though according to Hitendra Patil, director of practice development for AccountantsWorld and author of Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant*, emerging technology will not only fail to harm their job prospects, but also could make the CPA’s role more valuable in the long run.
*Podcast listeners can buy Patil’s book, Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant, for 15 percent off when they use discount code acc10p at CPATrendlines.com.
In 2016, Pennsylvania joined the list of states that have legalized medical marijuana. The newness of the industry, along with other factors, has resulted in complications in taxation and expense deductions. To help walk us through the vital role CPAs can play in helping this fledgling industry’s entrepreneurs, we were joined by Heather Demshock, assistant professor of accounting at Lycoming College in Williamsport, Pa.
The tax practitioner community has largely caught its collective breath now that the tax filing deadline is about a month in the rearview mirror. One practitioner, Dee Palaschak, CPA, of Sisterson & Co. LLP in Pittsburgh, shares her firm’s perspective on the challenges and successes from the 2016 tax year, as well as best practices for a successful 2017-2018. For even more practitioner insight, check out this CPA Now blog from Ryan Raffensperger, CPA.
Budgetary restrictions are something that just about every local government must deal with. One of the areas where they face challenges is data security, which makes them a popular target for cyber criminals. In this episode of CPA Conversations, Mark Burnette, a shareholder with LBMC Information Security and a presenter at the July 10-11 PICPA Government Accounting Conference https://www.picpa.org/courses/Course?id=25609, helps us examine some of the challenges these organizations face as well as offering some solutions for overcoming the obstacles.
What does the unpredictable state of health care mean for capital markets? And even more, what does it mean for CPAs working in the industry? Andy Majka, managing director and chief operating officer of Kaufman Hall & Associates Inc., addresses the issue in this segment of CPA Conversations. You can hear more from Majka at PICPA’s 2017 Health Care Conference, June 5-6, at the Hershey Lodge.
We’ve all heard of consumerism. But how is it changing the delivery of health care, and what about the many CPAs who work extensively in this industry? Marc Scher, CPA, partner in charge of KPMG LLP’s global and U.S. health care audit practice in southern California, clarifies this concept in a preview of his upcoming presentation at PICPA’s Health Care Conference, June 5-6, at the Hershey Lodge.
Pennsylvania’s 2017 tax amnesty program is here, but only for a limited time. John Kaschak, CPA, deputy secretary for taxation at the Pennsylvania Department of Revenue, stops by to explain the program’s timeframe and eligibility, as well as what it means for CPAs and their clients.
In a discussion related to their Education column for the digital-only bonus edition of the Pennsylvania CPA Journal, Duquesne University assistant professors Robert J. Kollar, CPA, and Valerie Trott Williams, CPA, CFE, CFF, sat with CPA Conversations to explore the pilot program they established in conjunction with Surgent CPA Review to integrate CPA Exam material into the college classroom.
Both the CEO and CFO of the Wounded Warrior Project were abruptly fired in 2016 after news reports surfaced alleging the charity had misused funds. Doug White, former director of the master’s program in nonprofit management at Columbia University, shares some of what he discovered after investigating these allegations and the fallout, and discusses what it all means for CPAs working in the nonprofit sector.
With so much competition in the accounting field, the need to open new revenue streams is paramount. One area that is emerging as a possibility for exploration is supplying business advisory services. On this episode of CPA Conversations, we talk to Richard Stanger, chief executive officer of StangerCarlson in New York City, about this growing area of opportunity in the accounting world.
While data analytics techniques could benefit all accounting practitioners, many of these businesses can be either intimidated by the prospects of a new way of doing things or limited by their resources. In his return to CPA Conversations, Tommy Stephens, a shareholder with K2 Enterprises, tells us how many of the benefits of data analytics can be harnessed through mastery of Microsoft Excel.
We all know that “fake news” has become a buzzword in the global and national political landscapes, but is it possible that the concept could affect financial information as well as people’s understanding of basic economic principles? To answer this question, CPA Conversations spoke with Dr. Sean Stein Smith, CPA, CMA, CGMA, an assistant professor of professional practice at Rutgers University in Camden, N.J.
Recent legislation has eliminated, or greatly curtailed, who can use the file-and-suspend Social Security benefit claiming strategy, and who can file a restricted application for spousal benefits. In this episode of CPA Conversations, Laurie Siebert, CPA, explains what members should know about these changes to claiming Social Security benefits and how they can better advise clients in retirement planning.