• Accounting

AICPA ENGAGE 2019: accounting “pushes the boundaries”

Intapp recently exhibited at the AICPA Engage annual conference, which brings together thousands of accounting and financial professionals looking to evolve and transform their business.  Held in Las Vegas over the course of four days, the event was a breeding ground for learning, best practices and various forms of technology and innovations all tailored to the accounting and financial services industry. From a professional perspective, I was delighted at the impactful conversations and interactions I had during my experience at AICPA Engage and I’d like to share with you some of the key themes that emerged:

Accounting Digital transformation

While one may think this year’s unofficial AICPA theme could be “don’t be in denial about digital,” attendees were open, curious and receptive to learning about digital innovation and transformation. Although many admitted they have been slow to embrace the advances in technology, conversations on cloud computing, CRM, data analytics, and AI found a captive audience. What I heard most was the need to adopt solutions that would further enable progress and business growth.

Efficiency by using data

Visibility and transparency into what firms do well, their key revenue drivers, as well as the overall cost of an engagement were deemed important by firms. My team at Intapp and I genuinely connected with show attendees and learned a great deal about how they can use the troves of data already in their possession. Many admitted that they were doing nothing with the data and that they wanted to change that. Quickly. This was fantastic to hear, as Intapp concentrates on bringing clients consultative solutions, many which leverage smart data through AI-powered technologies.

It’s all about specialization

Firms are no longer a one stop shop with tax, audit, advisory and payroll under one roof. They have gotten leaner and nimbler as a means of survival. Many outside of the Big 4 have found niche verticals to service, focusing on specific industries or practice areas. The need to leverage technology to drive efficiency and revenue to enable business development has never been greater.

Attendees that I spoke with came to AICPA for the continuing professional education, networking and the full ENGAGE experience. The liveliness of Las Vegas as a setting also had its advantages, but the chance to hear industry thought leaders while bonding with peers stood out.

The AICPA exhibitor’s experience
The exhibitor’s space was also a draw with a definite focus on technology. Leading brands such as SAP, Thomson Reuters, Wolters Kluwer, Chrome River, Vertex, LexisNexis and Introhive were amongst some represented.

Intapp exhibited in partnership with our colleagues from the recently acquired Intapp. Our 10×10 booth was a hub of activity—providing us with an opportunity to interact with conference goers, demo our Industry Cloud and to display digital marketing collateral on two large screens. The ability to fly the Intapp flag (or blimp if you will (see below #TBT image from one of our first trade shows)) was important at the industry’s largest gathering.

In an industry that moves towards change at a glacial place, Intapp represents “accounting digital transformation and pushing the boundaries of growth.” We look forward to seeing everyone at AICPA Engage next year and in the meantime, we invite you to explore our Industry Cloud for professional and financial services.