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The Year Ahead: 2023 in Accounting in the United States: Building a Foundation for the Future

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  • 13 Pages
  • November 2022
  • Region: United States
  • Arizent
  • ID: 5715066
In the heads-down, all-hands-on-deck environment of the COVID-19 pandemic, accounting firms found themselves working flat out just to keep their clients afloat and help them respond successfully to rapidly changing situations. As the sense of urgency abates somewhat, however, accountants have time to consider their own mid- and long-term challenges, and to face the difficult task of making plans about a very uncertain future.

Waves of disruptive technologies, major shifts in the demographics, nature and demands of the workforce, regulatory revolutions, changes in client expectations, and a host of other factors are radically altering how accounting firms operate, which services they offer, how they find and serve clients, what staff they recruit and retain, and much more. On top of that, rising inflation, a troubling economic situation and other short-term conditions mean that the near future is shaping up to be full of challenges.

And yet accounting firms of all sizes have raised their expectations for growth for 2023. Why?

To start, accountants have realized that they can do better than other organizations, even in the most difficult of economic environments. While growth rates shrank over 2020 and 2021, they stayed positive and firms had more work than they could handle. More broadly, firms have begun to grapple with many of the perennial challenges they have been facing, from finding new ways to recruit and retain top talent (or to avoid needing talent in the first place), to embracing technology and - perhaps most importantly - pursuing a major shift from a compliance-first mindset to one that focuses primarily on higher-value advisory services.

This report explores the steps firms plan to take (and some that they’re not planning, but possibly should take) as they look ahead to the next 12 months. These positive adaptations aim to lay a foundation for continued, and hopefully greater, success in 2023 and beyond

Table of Contents

  • Introduction
  • Key findings
  • About this report
  • Research methodology
  • Respondent profile
  • Expecting a better year
  • Advisory: The foundation of the future
  • More plans for 2023
  • Challenges old and new
  • Conclusions
  • How to move forward