CEO Compass - Summer 2021

by Ralph Albert Thomas, CPA (DC), CGMA | NJCPA CEO and Executive Director | July 7, 2021

It’s Time to Move Forward

During the past year, you have provided more guidance and leadership to your clients, firms and employers than ever before. In such unprecedented circumstances, we were able to come out stronger as a profession and a community. But this shouldn’t surprise anyone. Throughout history, our profession has adapted — it’s how we’ve thrived, and your work in the last year is a continuation of that legacy.

According to a new report from the Association for Accounting Marketing (AAM), almost half (45.3 percent) of firms say the COVID-19 pandemic has had an overall positive effect on them by accelerating key tech and process innovation within their offices. Of the firms who said the pandemic had a positive effect on them, the top three areas of business positively impacted by the pandemic were increases in service offerings (42.4 percent), cost savings from remote work (18.2 percent) and advancements in technology (15.2 percent).

At the 2021 NJCPA Virtual Convention in June, we discussed the many ways our members have pivoted to deliver value during disruption and how we at the NJCPA are proud to provide support every step of the way by:

  • Transitioning to 100-percent virtual training and offering more than 250 virtual programs. NJCPA members have taken more than 12,000 free CPE credits through Membership+.
  • Polling our members about their willingness to return to in-person programs. There was roughly a 50/50 split between members wanting to come back this fall and those considering coming back sometime in 2022, unsure or who aren’t coming back at all.
  • Remaining a thought leader on tax and fiscal issues and a go-to resource in the state capitol and among the media. 
  • Carrying on extensive communications with the New Jersey Division of Taxation on issues ranging from extending various tax deadlines to implementation of the Business Alternative Income Tax (BAIT). We also advocated for preventing the state from taxing forgiven PPP loans and for allowing business expense deductions related to those loans. 
  • Working with the New Jersey State Board of Accountancy to resolve problems encountered by individual CPAs and CPA candidates and help with firm licensing renewals. 
  • Launching a live online chat tool to answer member questions.

Even as we help you respond to today’s demands, we are, as always, looking ahead. 

Society staff and the NJCPA Education Foundation Executive Committee are developing protocols to ensure that the return to in-person programming in January 2022 is smooth and safe. To help avoid confusion, in-person event protocols will be developed based on best practices. The NJCPA Board of Trustees remains open to amending policies should circumstances change between now and the end of the year.

To you and all our members, thank you for the tremendous support you have shown us and the value you’ve provided clients, employers and your communities during this extraordinary time. You are true leaders on the path to recovery.

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