Accountants have been cautioned about the growing need for them to embrace new opportunities and develop a well-rounded offering if they are to meet the growing expectations of clients.
BMR Group Solutions managing director Mark Ratcliff has urged accountants to focus on more than just the ‘traditional’ areas of the industry.
In his own client base, Mr Ratcliff has noticed a spike in people looking for “communication, not just compliance”, he said.
“I think a lot of accountants don’t know how to have a conversation with people and they just do what they did last year, there’s no value-add,” he told AccountantsDaily.
Mr Ratcliff noted that most accounting firms are still content with their focus on compliance, which he believes is adding increasingly less value from an advice perspective.
He also commented on firms that have repeatedly ignored the importance of technology, indicating they will struggle to satisfy a client base that now expects far swifter results.
In his opinion, firms rejecting new technology and areas of growth are simply falling back on practices that are becoming inefficient and underwhelming for existing and new clients.
“I think one of the concerning trends with accounting firms in general is doing what they’ve always done,” Mr Ratcliff said.
“[Firms] are not looking to change or invest their time and effort. Sure it’s a pain in the backside but you’ve got to go for it.”