Accountants and Small Business Clients Face Similar Challenges

Accountants and their small business clients share similar challenges of complex regulations

Accountants feel the pressure to lower fees and prices, according to a new poll.

The survey, by the International Federation of Accountants, found that keeping up with new regulations and the pressure to lower fees were the top two challenges for Accountants. Their clients face similar challenges, according to the 3,678 small and mid-sized Accountants polled, with the burden of regulation topping the list and three economic factors—pressure to lower prices, economic uncertainty, and difficulties accessing finance—nearly tied as the next biggest challenges.

“The results are critical to IFAC and its member bodies gaining a deeper understanding of the challenges and opportunities faced by SMPs globally,” said IFAC SMP Committee Chair Giancarlo Attolini in a statement. “We were very pleased with the high response rate to this survey, which is testimony to the fact that our member bodies, who heavily promoted the poll, are just as concerned about SMPs as we are.”

The poll also included questions on business drivers and outlook. For nearly half the Accountants, business from new clients is the main driver of growth by a wide margin, with less than half as many respondents citing increased revenue from existing clients as their main driver of growth. However, when asked about performance expectations, many Accountants expect no change in business in the current year compared with 2011.

By Gustavo Viera

Gustavo A Viera, CPA, is the managing partner in Gustavo A Viera, PA, CPA. His experience spans more than 25 years. His public accounting experience includes a senior audit manager at PriceWaterHouseCoopers with a focus in the healthcare industry, and Chief Financial Officer of Hewlett Packard Latin America and Telefonica of Spain. Gus also writes a blog twice a week that addresses issues his clients have at He has also taught in the SBA program in Miami FL, and is admitted to practice in the State of Florida licensed Certified Public Accountant. Gus welcomes questions and he can be reached at Gustavo A Viera, PA, CPA, One Alhambra Plaza Floor PH Coral Gables FL 33134 (786) 250-4450.