The power of association and collaboration was evident at the May 31 professional issues update led by MACPA CEO Tom Hood.
Joined by MACPA Chair Lisa Cines and Maryland Sen. Brian Feldman, CPA, the program was peppered with fruitful dialogue with MACPA members and guests on topics ranging from legislative developments to new technologies to professional licensing requirements. Three hundred people connected to the event via the simulcast, joining a sold-out crowd at Johns Hopkins University-Montgomery Campus in Rockville, Md.
Identifying, meeting challenges
Hood introduced the event by describing the “5 Ts,” or core challenges identified by the association’s Managing Partners Committee:
- Taxes, standards, and regulations
- Technology / SMAC: Social, mobile, analytics, cloud
Hood discussed the impact of each of these areas and what the MACPA and its affiliate, the Business Learning Institute, are doing to help CPAs in audit, business and industry, government and not-for-profits become future-ready.
Hood and Cines also referenced the recent AICPA Governing Council meeting they attended, which included updates on tax advocacy efforts.
Taxes, standards and regulations
Hood and Cines detailed federal and state-level initiatives that the MACPA was part of, including taking part in the AICPA’s tax policy initiatives, including Ensuring a Modern-Functioning IRS for the 21st Century and Guiding Principles of Good Tax Policy. (A related resource from the AICPA is What’s at Stake: The CPA Profession’s Call for Federal Fiscal Responsibility.)
On the Maryland front, Hood and Feldman reviewed the hot issues that the MACPA played offense and defense on during the most recent legislative session. These included victories in support of the Taxpayer Protection Act signed by Gov. Larry Hogan and initiated by Comptroller Peter Franchot. Read more in Hood’s post, Maryland CPAs claim victory in Annapolis in 2017.
Attendees were also provided with a list of top regulatory developments at the FASB, SEC, PCAOB and AICPA. The MACPA and the BLI provide continuing education programming throughout the year on technical accounting subjects as well as “soft skills” like leadership development, strategic planning, and communications. See the CPE catalogue, events, and more program offerings from the BLI.
Technology, talent and time
Hood and Cines addressed concerns voiced in surveys taken by the MACPA and the AICPA that CPAs are feeling pressured to keep up with rapidly changing technologies and a war on talent, on top of time pressures to get the work done, let alone get ahead.
Resources available to help CPAs and finance executives deal with these issues include a new partnership recently announced by the MACPA, BLI and IBM to provide future-focused skills.
In addition, the AICPA offers the CGMA Business Model Framework, currently out for global consultation.
Additional resources are available from the MACPA’s sponsors. Hood introduced and thanked the May 31 sponsors, who were available to speak with attendees at information tables at the event. Those sponsors include:
He also expressed appreciation to the MACPA’s sponsors, including:
- M&T Bank
- Kelly Payroll
- AICPA Member Insurance Programs
- The Baltimore Business Journal
- Intuit QuickBooks
In addition to the new IBM Initiative, the MACPA and BLI have been leading the profession in avoiding disruption, anticipating change and becoming future-ready through their partnership with futurist Daniel Burrus in creating The Anticipatory Organization: Accounting and Finance Edition.
Next town hall meeting at annual meeting, June 26
The spring 2017 series of professional issues updates will wrap up with the MACPA Town Hall / Annual Meeting on June 26 at the Ten Oaks Ballroom and Conference Center in Clarksville, Md. Registration is free for MACPA members and $250 for non-members. The event is available both in-person and via simulcast.