Today's Features

The Limitations of Rainmakers

Young man under rain-covered umbrellaWhy marketing has to permeate the firm and the process.

By Bill Reeb and Dominic Cingoranelli
CPA Trendlines / Succession Institute

For most firms, new business comes in through referral. Therefore, the bigger a partner’s client base, the more likely that partner will bring in new business – which simply means that the more clients a partner knows, the more referrals that partner is likely to receive (not in percentage, but in raw numbers).

MORE ON PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT: Different Roles for Different Partners | Dealing With A-D Clients (You Know Who We Mean) | How Small ‘Books’ Hurt Firms | Why the Partner Agreement Matters | Merging for the Wrong Reasons | How to Implement Strategy, Step by Step | Accountability Requires Clear Expectations | How Retirement Issues Affect Succession Planning | How Partner Ratings Factor Into Equity
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Other drivers of referral success are long-standing service (seniority) and position in the firm (such being one of the named or senior partners). In these cases, there is an extended opportunity for referral simply because:

Selfie App Spots Early Cancer Signs

Male taking selfie while wearing glasses mentionedIt seems nearly as accurate as a blood test.

By Rick Richardson

Pancreatic cancer has a meager survival rate, with just 9 percent of patients surviving past five years.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: Magnify Your Smartphone Screen | 3 Considerations for Better WiFi Security | New MIT Drone Flies 5 Days on 1 Tank | Will HEIF Kill JPEG?
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The disease, which killed Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, is one of the hardest types of cancer to treat, but detecting and treating it early can make a big difference to survival rates. Researchers at the University of Washington have come up with a simple and incredibly accurate way to test for the cancer that people can administer themselves.

How Much Should Partners Make?

Scale with coins on one side, alarm clock on the otherDo they deliver or develop?

By Rob Nixon

How much should a partner of a multipartner accounting firm be paid? Should it be equal pay because you have equal shareholding?

MORE ON STRATEGY: The Entrepreneurial Accountant: An Oxymoron? | How to Structure Your Firm for Success | Why Average Project Value Matters | Do Your Clients Want More? | The Bizarre Habits of Accountants | 12 Traits of a Better You
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If it is going to be equal pay then each person must pass the checklist of the ideal partner. It’s my opinion that most should not be paid equally.

We Mourn the Passing of John Covaleski


Long-time accounting technology journalist.

John Covaleski, who covered the tax and accounting profession for 20 years, starting at Accounting Today and, more recently, at CPA Trendlines, has died. He was 64.

Covaleski was well-known throughout the profession, particularly in technology circles. "John was among the most diligent and respected journalists in the field," says Rick Telberg, who worked with him at Accounting Today and CPA Trendlines. "He was widely recognized for his character, integrity, and professionalism. He will be missed."

He and his work were quoted widely, including the by The New York Times. He was an award-winning journalist, with experience as a senior editor, manager, and feature and hard news writer for magazines, newspapers and on line. His expertise included domestic and international finance, local and regional business and government, accounting, insurance, the non-profit sector, business technology, and commercial real estate.

John Michael Covaleski of Hatboro, Penn., died Thursday, Sept. 14, 2017, at Abington Hospital Jefferson Health. He was 64 years old. John was born Oct. 20, 1952, in Philadelphia, Penns., son of the late John J. Covaleski and the late Ella O. Covaleski (nee - Bubernak). He is the husband of Janet Klabe; father of Katie Decker (Corey); brother of Patricia Jones (Robert) and Gerald Weslosky (Nancy). He is also survived by his niece and three nephews.

John was an avid golfer and United States Marine Veteran.

Relatives and friends are invited to his viewing on Tuesday, Sept. 19, 2017, from 10:30 to 11:30 A.M. at Wetzel and Son Funeral Home, 501 Easton Road, Willow Grove, PA 19090. His Funeral Mass will follow at 12 P.M. at St. David Church, 316 Easton Road, Willow Grove, PA, 19090.

Religious services will be conducted by Fr. Richard P. Connors from St. David Church.

In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to St. Joseph’s Manor, 1616 Huntingdon Pike, Meadowbrook, PA 19046. More at

Learning from Hurricanes Harvey and Irma

What disaster recovery readiness means for accountants.

How Ready Are You?
Disaster Recovery Effectiveness
Join the Survey. Get the Answers.


By Donny C. Shimamoto

Think back just a short while agp when you first found out that Hurricane Harvey was poised to hit Texas. Or this past week, knowing that Irma was about to hit Florida.

MORE: Focus on Cyber Risk, Not Just Security | Making IT Matter to Accountants | IT Nerds Need Budget Help | 8 Ways to Wrestle Software Subscriptions Into Submission | IT Hardware Gets Even More Complex (Great!) | How Accounting Geeks and Techie Nerds Can Play Nicely Together
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If a hurricane or other natural disaster were coming to your town would you know what to do to ensure that the damage and impact to your IT environment was prevented or minimized?

Who Wants to Be a Comptometrist?

Dinosaur talking on a rotary phoneHint: You shouldn't. Here's why.

By Hitendra Patil
Accountaneur: The Entrepreneurial Accountant

(With sincere respect to the erstwhile comptometrists.)

Only 16 out of over 500 million users of LinkedIn have “comptometrist” as the “past” title. And they held those positions from anywhere between 25 to 55 years ago!

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There are exactly zero comptometrists on LinkedIn today – and likely, in the world.

Magnify Your Smartphone Screen

Illustration of deviceThis tool is inexpensive and folds up.

By Rick Richardson

It seems no matter how big screens get on smartphones, they’ll never really be big enough.

MORE TECH THIS WEEK: 3 Considerations for Better WiFi Security | Nums Turns Your MacBook Trackpad into a Keypad | U.S. Company to Microchip Some Employees
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When Apple debuted the original iPhone in 2007, it only had a 3.5-inch display. Ten years on and smartphone screens have now ballooned up to a little over 6 inches. Some of the new “plus” models are practically tablets at this point.

Cyber Sleuths Muscle Accountants Aside in Forensic Investigations

Chart of desirable skills
Source: ACFE

Teams want more cyber-security experts than accountants.

By CPA Trendlines Research

Fraud investigation teams are currently seeking or expecting to add people with skills in digital forensics and cybersecurity, according to a new benchmarking survey from the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners.

MORE: Focus on Cyber Risk, Not Just Security   |  You’re Not Tech-Savvy If You’re Not Cyber-Safe, Too  |  SURVEY: Cybersecurity Grows in Importance  |  Do You Belong In Cybersecurity?  |  Why CPAs Need to Worry about Cyber Crime (Especially in Tax Season)  |  Hackers Using Hotel WiFi to Spy, Steal Data

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Interviewing tops the list of desirable skills, followed by litigation support, data analytics and social media snooping. Forensic accounting comes in fifth. READ MORE →