January 17, 2019

"I Wish I Was 30 Years Younger!"

January 17, 2019


An Ignite Blog By: Jay D. Langley, CPA, CGMA
KSCPA Chair of the Board
Vice President, Summers, Spencer & Company, P.A.


Maybe everyone who reads this has felt the same way at some point in their life. If you are younger than 50, you can look forward to saying that someday.

I attended the AICPA Leadership Conference and Fall Council meeting in October 2018. I was sitting with other members from Kansas listening to the speakers talk about emerging trends in our profession. I was so impressed and excited by the outlook of the future that I said, “I wish I was 30 years younger”. I forgot that Natasha was sitting close by. She asked if I would share my feelings with our members and the reasoning why I’d jump at the chance to toss a few pennies in the fountain of youth to experience the exciting future that lies ahead for our profession.


I will turn 70 in two months and have known I wanted to be a Certified Public Accountant since my junior year in high school. Our profession has changed so much in those 54 years, and yet is still based on the same principles as it was when I started my career. I am sure that my choice of an accounting career was the right choice. I am thankful for the direction that my career has taken me, but also feel a bit sad that I will not experience another 30 years as our profession advances. 


The goal of the KSCPA is to be your bridge to the future while serving as your professional link to the past. While recognizing and appreciating our path to the present, KSCPA also has its finger on the pulse of emerging trends. Natasha along with Past Chair Chad Allen, visited local chapters last year to discuss and explain some of these trends. The following is a short list of emerging trends in our profession:              

               Cloud Accounting
               Social Media Strategy
               Real Time Collaborative Accounting
               Adaptive Security
               Artificial Intelligence
               Accelerating Automation


Nick Chandi of the Forbes Technology Council discussed accelerating automation and its impact:

“Labor intensive tasks like tax preparation, payroll, auditing and banking will be fully automated. A trend that’s considered the greatest transformation since the introduction of double-entry bookkeeping 500 years ago.” 

Substantiating the magnitude of this projected trend, the AICPA announced new software that is available which combines automation, artificial intelligence and other innovations for audit and attest services. The software will be integrated with the latest AICPA technical guides. This software uses dynamic checklists to structure and manage engagements.


Some people, including some of my own family, think that accounting is boring; however, I cannot imagine a career that provides as much personal satisfaction and challenge as ours. In a world that is changing so fast, it is rewarding to know that our profession is evolving in order to stay ahead of the times. Here’s why I’m excited for the future:

  • The trends above are transforming the way we work. Technology is freeing up time to focus on higher level efforts and advisory services, and allows us to serve clients better, quicker, and in exciting new ways.
  • Our accounting community in Kansas is strong and growing. Technology like Exchange which connects members throughout the state is a great tool to collaborate with colleagues, ask important questions or see how other firms are handling challenges.
  • KSCPA members have the unique opportunity to look through a wider lens. Getting involved in task forces, committees, and the Board of Directors has given me the chance to make meaningful connections and has opened doors to new opportunities. If you haven’t already, discover worlds of possibility by getting involved, participating in the KSCPA leadership program and attending events. Email natasha@kscpa.org to get started.

While I wish I was 30 years younger in order to experience our profession in the future, I am excited for the future generations of accounting and finance professionals who will get to embrace the trends and utilize the technologies that will guide our profession for those who follow in their footsteps.

“We cannot always build the future for our youth, but we can build our youth for the future.”
 – Franklin D. Roosevelt


The Ignite blog is an official publication of the Kansas Society of CPAs.
Copyright 2019