Dispelling the Myths of the Stereotypical Accountant


Today, it’s better than ever to be an accountant in Public Practice. But with digital platforms increasingly becoming the norm, the industry is no longer as easily defined as it once was.

The perception of what an accountant does and what type of person becomes an accountant is changing fast. New technology is creating opportunities for the streamlining of day-to-day compliance work, and has opened doors to new industries and revenue growth.

However, the stereotypical image of an accountant remains. Some may think we’re introverted, systematic, boring and antisocial, but the reality is that a modern accountant requires more soft skills than ever before to build a successful career. A modern accountant should not only be a conceptual problem solver, but they need to think outside of the box too. They need to be able to interact on a personal level with their clients, building trust through confident interaction. They need to become a trusted business advisor.

At Ten Forward Finance, we realise that the typical compliance work of the past, while unavoidable and deadline driven, is not considered as important by our clients as business advisory, R&D and tax planning services. We have therefore taken a proactive approach to change our business model to reflect this.

A day in the life at Ten Forward Finance depends on where you are in your career, and what area of the firm you are working in: administration & operations, HR, client management, tax etc. Generally, working in an accounting firm suggests diversity in the type of work you do, no matter the level; every day is different.

In between the usual day-to-day and compliance work of bookkeeping, VAT returns, payroll, month-end management reports, and year-end accounts and self-assessments, we are actively automating the bookkeeping and internal management functions to allow us to focus on the services our clients are asking for.

It’s important that we are all on the same page, working together to save time and effort, so that each of us can focus on what’s important and on doing what we love. Communication is key and can involve anything from having a chat about a client’s upcoming schedule, holidays and family life, to business expansion and advice. We love asking questions and getting into the detail, so that we have the foundation to help our clients grow their dreams.

Being in an accounting firm brings the added benefit of having a team of experts you can draw knowledge from. Team collaboration and training are also important aspects of the day. We may not be an expert in all areas of accounting as individuals, but we are exactly that with the backing of our team!

It’s easy for us to quash the outdated perception of working in an accounting firm as being in a back office doing mind-numbing, lonely and purely process-driven work. Nothing about Ten Forward Finance reinforces any of these notions. We exude the air of a confident, forward-thinking, modern firm that’s ready to embrace the present and future opportunities that technology has provided.

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