July 16, 2018

Embracing Remote Accountants Can Benefit Your Business

remote working

Remote working is on the rise. In 2016, 22% of American employees did at least some of their work from home. And for those with advanced degrees over the age of 25, the number is even higher—a full 43% reported working remotely at least some of the time.

It may feel natural to some accounting firms to resist this trend. After all, how can you monitor your employees and their workflow if you can’t physically see them?

But embracing remote CPAs and accountants can have a positive effect on your bottom line and your ability to achieve business goals. Here are four ways the remote work trend can improve your business.

Reduced overhead costs

When employees provide their own workspaces and technology, the cost savings for businesses can be substantial. Companies can maintain a smaller office—or even no office at all—cutting down on rent and equipment costs. Remote work can also slash your IT budget, as you may not need to purchase and manage as many computers, smartphones, routers, etc.

“Companies have caught on that not only are their employees happier being able to work remotely, but that it also saves them money,” says Patti Scharf, Co-Founder, and COO, Catching Clouds.

More competitive recruiting

Today’s accountants know that with the ubiquity of connected technology, they can perform much if not all of their work from anywhere. More and more, the best talent is valuing the ability to work remotely in their career decisions.

“Employees are asking why they can’t work from home, and that’s putting pressure on companies to offer alternatives to remain competitive,” says Scharf.

Millennials are even more likely to seek a position that allows them to telecommute. A 2015 study showed that 68 percent of college grads would weight a potential job more favorably if the company allowed remote work at least some of the time.

Accountingfly keeps an eye on what happens in the accounting labor market, and in 2016, a remote CPA job got 7 TIMES more applicants than an in-the-office CPA job on Accountingfly.

Today’s talent is valuing remote work and a stronger work/life balance. And if you’re not paying attention to this, then they won’t pay attention to you.

More effective business strategy

With employees working in a physical office, it’s easy for managers to get distracted by factors that don’t affect the bottom line. For instance, it’s almost impossible for the boss not to notice who shows up on time and who leaves early, regardless of those workers’ performance.

“It can be painful for a lot of companies and managers to have to shift to paying attention to metrics that matter,” says Scharf. “When a company has remote workers, they have to get extremely clear about their expectations and how they’re going to measure performance, and they need to be able to effectively communicate those expectations to their employees.”

According to Scharf, this shift in strategy can be cumbersome, but the results are worth it. “It’s a very difficult dynamic to master, but if a company can do it successfully, the rewards are great,” says Scharf.

Better employee engagement

Strange as it sounds, remote employees are often more engaged with co-workers and supervisors than their in-office counterparts. According to Harvard Business Review, 87 percent of remote workers feel more connected through the use of video conferencing. We can only offer conjecture as to why this is, but perhaps the comfort and freedom of working from anywhere helps employees connect with each other more openly and honestly.

If you’re a firm that embraces remote CPAs or high-level accountants, Accountingfly can help you highlight that competitive advantage to the best accounting job candidates. Click here to reach out for more information.

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Accounting firms don’t do much advertising. It’s got something to do with ethics and since the CPA exam is ancient history for some we can’t talk specifics.
Firms do like to sponsor stuff related to golf. Tournaments, players, etc. One recipient of accounting firm cash has been widely followed here but now we recently discovered another firm sponsoree that, we feel, may rouse as loyal of a following as Phil.
natalie.jpgThis is Natalie Gulbis who is sponsored by RSM McGladrey.
Natalie works with RSM in partnering with the Special Olympics Golf Program and will be a contributor to RSM’s new golf blog.
We’re not really into golf so we can’t really debate who has a better game or who garners better exposure for their sponsor so, after the jump, we’ve presented a more superficial analysis:


phil-mickelson.jpgnatatlie 2.jpg
We admit that we know nothing about promotion or advertising but if you’ve got opinions on which firm seems to have found the better golfer to sponsor, discuss in the comments.

McGladrey & Pullen Might Want to Think This Whole Divorce Thing Over

gulbis3.jpgThe accounting firm soap opera between McGladrey & Pullen and RSM McGladrey continues as RSM has filed notice terminating the two firms’ agreement and, under no circumstances, will they allow M&P to come crawling back to them without RSM’s involvement.
This was all included in a filing with the SEC, made by H&R Block, who is obviously the pimp in this whole love triangle.
Personally, M&P should probably consider going back to RSM’s sorry ass just to take advantage of the Natalie Gulbis exposure.
Judging by the firm’s response to our earlier mistake, they won’t be listening to us. Poor thing is caught in middle of this whole mess. Natalie, if you ever need to talk, don’t hesitate.
RSM McGladrey wants say in any reconciliation with McGladrey & Pullen [KCBJ]