It’s the most wonderful time…for Professional Goals!

It’s the most wonderful time of year! Snow is falling, lights shine bright and there are goodies galore. What you might not realize is this really is the most wonderful time of year…for reviewing your professional goals!

2017 is right around the corner, so let’s take a proactive approach to our career this year. The AICPA blog posted a great article on how to do just that. Take time now to review your career goals and see where you stand. Are you where you want to be? If you are, wonderful! If you think you could use some help, review the article and then apply the information to you. It is written for CPAs but the advice in it is solid for any career.

And while you are at it, start gathering some of your year end tax information. Tax season is right around the corner!

Women in Accounting and Tax

AICPA Insights released an article on June 10, 2016 detailing the impact women have in accounting and tax. It highlights how women and men have different strengths and how their blending is critical to our profession. However, it also points out how as women climb the career ladder, there are fewer women at the top than men. And the way to fix that? Mentor-ship.

Scammers Targeting Students

I guess you have to give scammers credit for their tenacity. The newest scam the IRS warns taxpayers is IRS impersonators are demanding payment for a non-existent tax that they call the “federal student tax” according to the article posted on AccountingToday.

Scammers are indiscriminate in who they target. Everyone needs to be vigilant in protecting themselves and their families. Remember the IRS will never call and demand immediate payment. If you are concerned you can always review the IRS website or contact your local accounting firm.

Millennial Saving Habits are Poor

As a Millennial (although I prefer Gen Y) I am fascinated by the habits of my fellow demographic. As highlighted in this recent article in the Journal of Accountancy Millennials are struggling to save money.

It is interesting that the thing interfering with saving is impulse spending habits. It does appear there is hope though. Millennials are internalizing the need to save money and see it as very important. Hopefully there will be great resources in the future to assist with this.

Can You Help the IRS?

In an interesting turn of events at what appears to be the IRS trying to improve their customer experience they are launching a competition aimed at redesigning the IRS website. The Journal of Accountancy posted the article detailing the facts of the competition.

This might turn out to be a good way to improve relations with the IRS and help to update a desperately neglected tax system.

H&R Block Versus the CPA Profession

Bill Sheridan posted an article at detailing H&R Block’s smear campaign against the CPA Profession. He detailed how the CEO of the AICPA contacted H&R Block and asked that the advertisements against CPAs be removed. Spoiler Alert: They were not. After reading the article, I have one question: What is it that H&R Block has against CPAs?

Are you responsible for your company’s internal controls?

The AICPA has shared a white paper in their article Who Is Responsible for Internal Controls? that can help companies establish their internal control policies.

Internal Controls is a sensitive, but vital part of running a business and it must be taken seriously. Helping each employee to know exactly what their role in internal controls is will help reduce the risks your company faces on a daily basis.

IRS May Not Be Popular, But it Needs Updating

In the recent article, Back Special Report: AICPA Tax Leaders Make Case for Improved IRS Service, American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) tax advocacy staff and volunteers attended a meeting with Congress and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to shed light on the issues the IRS has with handling service to its members.

I believe this is a wonderful first step in improving the IRS. As much as the public wishes it would just go away, the IRS is here to stay. And in order to serve the American people it needs serious updating. This years seems to be a big problem with Identity Theft for taxpayers. The AICPA is on the forefront of this problem to fix it rather than complain about it. That is an amazing service to the American taxpayers.