Cloud computing isn’t as optional as you think

Aug 09, 2012
Kyle Anderson, CPA, CGMA, CMA, has a message for CPAs who are considering the merits of using “cloud” computing: You probably already are.

Anderson, a Clemson University professor of accounting, was among the speakers Tuesday at OCSPA’s Mega A&A Conference in Cleveland.

“How many of you e-filed this year?” Anderson asked attendees. “You're in the cloud. How many have done e-banking? Believe it or not, we're in the cloud.”

In a session on communicating and conducting business in web-based/cloud environments for small business, Anderson stressed the importance of learning about sound business practices – not just those directly related to accounting.

“We have to get involved with how our clients are using technology,” he said. “CPAs tend to talk about internal controls dealing with financial information, but the client doesn’t care about that.”

Anderson said CPAs should become familiar with a “360-degree framework for internal controls,” which include not only financial information controls, but company policy controls and compliance with local, state and federal regulations.

In a session on IFRS, Bruce Pounder, CMA, CFM, DipIFR (ACCA), director of professional programs for Loscalzo Associates, Ltd., sought to clear up some myths.

“A week doesn't go by when I don't read something, online or in the press, that is flat wrong about IFRS,” Pounder said. “CPAs have been wasting a lot of time and energy preparing for something that isn't going to happen, or not dealing with something that is happening.”

"The likelihood that any U.S. company will be forced to switch from using today's version of U.S. GAAP to today's version of IFRS is absolutely zero," he said.

However, he cautioned that CPAs still have to do their homework; because they might need to work with companies outside the U.S. Some CPAs will “need to know IFRS in addition to GAAP at a bilingual-level of proficiency.”