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1. A pipeline for diversity  

BY Frank K. Ross, CPA, Jean T. Wells, CPA, J.D. and and Allyson T. Clarke, CPA
Despite decades of intensive efforts, the accounting profession has not reached its diversity goals. African-Americans and Hispanics made up 13.1% and 16.9%, respectively, of the U.S. population in 2012, according to U.S. Census data, but secured just 4% and 6% of the new hires in 2011–12 at CPA firms, AICPA data show.Misperception about accounting as a career is one reason for the disparity.

2. How real work experience can help students, businesses   WebExclusive

BY Ken Tysiac
Getting work experience while in college can give accounting and finance students an edge in their post-graduation job search, according to a new survey.Meanwhile, businesses that provide work opportunities for students can build a network of promising talent that will pay big dividends in the future, experts say.

3. Honing your hiring  

BY Doug Blizzard
It takes some detective work to hire the right new employee. Management needs to piece together clues about the applicant’s personality and work history. It takes time to determine whether a candidate has the character and credentials to fit the company’s needs. Here are a few steps to help you land the right candidates.

4. How to land an overseas assignment  

BY Sabine Vollmer
Securing an overseas assignment may look like a daunting challenge to a U.S. CPA who isn’t working for a Big Four accounting firm with offices worldwide, but it can be done.The JofA sought tips from three experts on how U.S. CPAs can gain international experience. Senior editor Sabine Vollmer talked to Paul McDonald; Pamela Parker-White, CPA, CGMA; and Jason Ramey, CPA.The PanelistsPaul McDonald is senior executive director at Robert Half, a staffing firm that specializes in placing accountants and finance professionals worldwide.Pamela Parker-White, division controller and business manager for Babcock & Wilcox’s small modular reactor program with

5. Commission to survey accounting profession’s diversity climate   WebExclusive

BY Ken Tysiac
An AICPA-led body plans to gather perspectives on the profession’s views on diversity and inclusion through a survey and provide a new best practices resource for firms that are developing diversity initiatives.The recently formed AICPA National Commission on Diversity & Inclusion is charged with developing methods to help the profession recruit, retain, and promote a diverse workforce.Ken Bouyer, chair of the commission, gave an update on its progress Sunday at the AICPA governing Council’s fall meeting.The National Commission on Diversity & Inclusion will partner with several accounting organizations and state CPA societies to survey their respective memberships

6. Tackling the top issues  

BY Jeff Drew
For many, if not most, accounting firms, the quest to survive the Great Recession and its aftermath has ended. The focus now is on growth. That’s one of the overarching themes derived from the 2013 Private Companies Practice Section (PCPS) CPA Firm Top Issues survey, which found that accounting firms of all sizes are strongly pursuing new clients while also turning their attention back to finding and retaining qualified staff.

7. How to select a successor   CPEDirect

BY Joel Sinkin and Terrence Putney, CPA
Selecting the successor for a retiring partner in an accounting firm can take on many forms. The decision can be made by an individual CPA or by the firm leadership. It can involve the transfer of clients, ownership, and/or responsibilities internally or the sale of ownership to an outside entity.

8. The long goodbye   CPEDirect

BY Joel Sinkin and Terrence Putney, CPA
The best time for an accounting firm to start work on a succession plan is the day the firm is formed. Of course, most firms don’t do that. The question in many cases has become: “How quickly can I put together a succession plan and head into retirement?” The answer depends on a number of factors.

9. Demand for accounting grads reaches all-time high   WebExclusive

BY Chris Baysden
A new study examining supply and demand trends in accounting found that the profession is thriving—with college enrollments, degrees awarded, and demand for new accounting graduates all reaching all-time highs. CPA firms hired 40,350 new accounting graduates last year, including 23,793 graduates with bachelor’s degrees and 16,557 with master’s degrees, according to the AICPA survey.

10. Staffing, succession emerge as top CPA firm concerns   WebExclusive

BY Jeff Drew
Succession planning and staffing joined new client acquisition and dealing with the complexities of rapidly changing tax regulations as the top issues facing U.S. accounting firms, according to an AICPA survey released Tuesday. The 2013 Private Companies Practice Section (PCPS) CPA Firm Top Issues survey found evidence that CPA firms are moving out of survival mode and into a mindset focused on growth.
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