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					   Expert Series Talk:
Accountants of the Future

      12 June 2008
           Presented by:

           Andrew Heng
CA(M), CPA(Aust), CPA(Mongolia), CPA
 (Cambodia), CFP B.Com, LLB(UWA)
      Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002

•   The Sarbanes-Oxley Act of 2002 is a US
    federal law enacted on July 30, 2002 in
    response to a number of major corporate
    and accounting scandals e.g. Enron.

•   These scandals, which cost investors
    billions of dollars when the share prices of
    the affected companies collapsed, shook
    public confidence in the nation's security
    markets.
   Transformation of the Business World

• Financial misdeeds have led to
  many regulatory changes giving
  rise to increased emphasis on
  ethics.

• Accountants’ stature have
  elevated to Public Guardian.
  Increased demand for their
  services.

• New opportunities emerge in
  areas of business/ financial
  planning, coaching, mentoring,
  forensic accounting
              Trends Impacting
           Accountants of Tomorrow

• Increasing demand for skilled professionals

• Enterprise risk management

• Fair value accounting

• Globalization

• Fraud control
               What Clients Want


• Clients are becoming increasingly sophisticated and
  forward looking and have higher expectations. The
  client of the future will have a sharper
  understanding of finances and be more demanding
  of quality service covering a broader range of
  services:
        Sourcing finance
        Financial planning
        Business coaching
        Advisory services
                Generations X and Y

• Generation X – those born between 1965 to 1982

• Generation Y – those born between 1983 to 1997. relate
  more to their profession than to an employer, generation
  of multi taskers, belief in self worth, unafraid of changes.

• Generation Y - want to see strong and focused leadership
  within organisations for which they work.

• Gen X and Y less interested in investing in an accounting
  firm. This means more accountants are likely to come
  from graduate backgrounds other than the traditional
  Bachelor of Commerce or Bachelor of Accounting.
      Life Cycle of An Accountant
Age                             Meteor to Mentor
age 22-28 (post-university      Develop technical skills, gain
degree; early phase of          exposure to working with staff
professional work):             and clients. Complete
                                professional degree e.g. CPA
age 28-38 (broaden experience) Perform roles in business
                               environment to gain
                               commercial and business
                               experience.

age 38-50 or 55 (prime fee-     Adviser y role with high fee-
earning phase):                 earning focus. Supervise a
                                number of other technical
                                personnel and mentor them in
                                accounting and business.
                New Rules, New Roles

• Increased demand in accounting and
  finance professionals - new job
  opportunities and higher career profile

• New regulations – created a level
  playing field for entry-level staff and
  experienced staff

• Demographic changes affects the talent
  pool

• Colleges and Universities offering more
  courses in response to marketplace
  needs

• Interest in accounting programs is on
  the rise
          Competencies for a Changed
                Environment

• Specific attributes employers seek – spreadsheet skills,
  flowcharting, database applications expertise etc

• Certifications remain highly valued for accounting and
  finance professionals

• Technology-related certifications are valued

• Communications abilities – both written and verbal – and
  soft skills become important,

• Accountants will have to improve their technical skills,
  offer financial planning
                 Paths to Success


• Opportunities are in abundance for accounting and
  finance professionals. Public accounting for instance is
  the most popular option.

• Public accountants develop broad based skills and gain
  experience preferred and often required for positions in
  both public accounting and private industry.

• Consultants with expertise in internal control,
  information security, business continuity planning,
  anti-fraud, mergers and acquisition are highly sought.

• Corporate accounting would be another popular career
  choice as it ventures into offering guidance for daily
  operation through value creating activities.
       Public Accounting: A New Order

• New regulation and changes have reshaped the work
  of public accountants. Heightened emphasis has
  been put on auditing and consulting services.

• Recent legislation has made auditing the primary
  focus of firms hence raising its labor, time and fees.

• The rise in demand has caused second tier firms to
  expand their service offering to greater heights to
  cater to the ever demanding market.
       Specialities and Skills in Demand

• General Accounting

• Financial Analyst

• Internal Audit

• International Accounting

• Forensic Accounting
                 Industry Statistics

• The impact of new regulations on businesses
    37% - pressure to meet compliance deadlines

    31% - collaboration between accounting and information
           technology

    30% - a more ethical environment

    58% - have already implement new practices to ensure
           greater control of accounting processes
               Industry Statistic…cont’d

• Specialties and skills in demand
    49% responded general accounting
    17% responded internal auditing

• Workforce demographic trends
    Total enrollment in accounting programs for the period of
     2000-2004 rose 19%
    The overall number of accounting degrees awarded
     increased 8% in 2003-2004
Workforce Demographic Trends
                 Lifelong learning
• Supplement your degree with professional
  degree/ masters
   – Certifications provide a level of expectations
     that the person is competent to carry the
     work required
• Stay up to date with legislative and
  regulatory changes

• Develop soft skills - communication and
  presentation skills, community services,
  clubs etc

• Enhance yourself in IT area – spreadsheets,
  powerpoint, database
QUESTIONS?
   Contact :

   Ferrier Hodgson Monteiro & Heng

   Monteiro & Heng Chambers
   No. 22, Jalan Tun Sambanthan 3
   50470 Kuala Lumpur
   Tel : 603-22736227,
   Fax : 603-22737503
   Email : ferrier@fhmh.com.my
   Website : www.ferrierhodgson.com

            Andrew Heng
         aheng@fhmh.com.my

				
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