IPA chief executive officer Andrew Conway said the end of the transition period is fast approaching and accountants should make decisions about the future of their businesses now to seize the opportunity to diversify and grow.
Mr Conway said it is a great opportunity for accountants to consider the future of their businesses and which path they would like to take.
“Traditional compliance work such as income tax returns is shrinking, so it is an ideal time for accountants to consider their future business model,” he said.
“We know consumers see accountants as their trusted advisers and clients will seek advice from their accountants. This provides accountants with a marvellous opportunity to cement relationships with clients,” he added.
Recent research conducted by CoreData shows accountants as the most nominated primary source of professional advice by consumers regarding money and financial matters, at 33.9 per cent compared to just 17.5 per cent for non-aligned financial advisers.
“Demand for the one-stop shop is on the increase and clients look to their accountants to fill this space with the provision of financial and other business advisory services,” Mr Conway said.
Mr Conway said it is essential for any accountant wishing to provide financial advice to be FOFA compliant, and to ensure they are ready in time for July 2016, accountants must act now.
“Making a clear business decision about what their future practice will look like, what services they elect to offer, what licensing or referral options they will undertake and the consideration of any additional education requirements should happen now,” said Mr Conway.