Non-Accountants: A Growth Engine for Accounting Firms

Non-Accountants: A Growth Engine for Accounting Firms

As accounting compliance work is becoming more and more technology-driven, there are plenty of opportunities to develop new services. Based on clients’ needs, these growth services can help accounting firms prepare for success in the future using non-traditional roles.

The Shift from Compliance to Advisory Services

An accounting firm should make about 20 percent from advisory work and 80 percent of its revenues from compliance work. That mix is flipping, and future firm revenues will be driven by advisory work, which requires being recognized as a client’s trusted advisor.

For firms, getting to that place requires people with the appropriate skills to be curious, ask probing questions and help co-pave the future of their clients. Non-accountants will uncover and reveal a broader view of how clients think, how they would want to collaborate, and how they will bring ground-breaking propositions beyond just the numbers. 

Case in Point

Accountants are finding themselves in requirement of sales experts and big data analysts who might not have a background in accounting. Identification of specific advisory needs starts with the firm’s clients. Bringing in non-CPAs to meet needs of clients provides a holistic approach to the whole client experience.

In today’s technology-driven environment, focusing on revenue expansion from a traditional accounting perspective is limited. Recruiting a person with a diversity of thought pushes a company to think outside the box. 

Diversity of Thought in Action

In order to stay competitive and relevant, great organizations must constantly introspect, improve, grow, and challenge the status quo.

A firm’s culture should be built on the willingness to channel creativity and innovation. Leaders should not only uplift and encourage new ideas, but they should also promote and reward them.

Diversity of thought is a crystal clear business driver. It arises out of intentionally bringing different experiences, skills, talents and backgrounds together. Multiple perspectives lead to better problem-solving techniques, which can advance product/service development, which in turn leads to better profits, revenue, and talent metrics.


An accounting firm must have a passion for growth, debate, change and thoughtful inclusion of perspectives. Hire people who are not afraid of venturing into unexplored territory, and serving clients in innovative ways.

Finding the Right Talent

Expanding the talent universe means turning to non-traditional hiring sources, like tapping into workers who have spent time out of the workforce. 


Another underutilized talent pool is older generations or retirees who might not want to commit to a full-time job. These individuals are highly skilled resources worth decades of experience that can be leveraged for a company’s success.

Firms that want to attract a talent pool outside the traditional mix could also consider moving to a more project-based alternative. Recruiting people to carry out a project is a lot different from asking them to commit to 50 hours a week.

Look for people that fit into your firm’s culture well, based on their passion and collaborative spirit, tenacity and curiosity. A cultural fit is more crucial than anything and finding someone that fits into a company’s culture will help with assuring their success (and the company’s success) more than if they followed a traditional career path.


Hope that the above article is helpful to you. If you have any queries, feel free to comment in the section below. Happy Learning!

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