To prepare your accountancy practice for the long term, you may want to focus on developing new and increasingly relevant skills.  

In fact, a CaseWare study found that 62% of accountants acknowledge a considerable skills gap in the industry. If you work to close this disparity, you can become more helpful to clients and strengthen your practice for the future

But why is it so important to do this, and how can you? Don’t worry; we’ll help you out.  

This guide covers how to close the accountancy skills gap, including:

  • Understanding why it’s important.
  • Identifying your skills gap.
  • Finding ways to close the skills gap.

Understanding why the accountancy skills gap is important

As an accountant, it’s fair to worry about how financial technology development might impact your services. New technologies automate many of the key tasks of an accountant. 

As automation grows efficient and accurate, accountants may move away from manual financial admin tasks. Instead, accountants could eventually turn towards a more advisory role

With this change, accountants need to focus on new skill sets that can help them use the time-saving tech and offer financial education to clients. This is where the gap comes in. 

Without these essential strengths, accountants may not thrive in their businesses. As more people turn to automated processes, accounting services will be less valuable. That is unless accountants offer something new. 

Closing your accountancy skills gap will help you expand your services to make them more valuable to clients so you can last in the long run

Identifying your skills gap as an accountant

To close your accountancy skills gap, you’ll first want to identify which ones you need to strengthen. Let’s go over a few of the common ones.  

The main accountancy skills gaps


As time-saving financial technologies grow, you may worry about how they could make your practice obsolete. But, these tools can also help you make your services more efficient and streamlined. 

You can save time on manual tasks to satisfy your existing clients and take on more work with digital skills. So, you may want to check in with your abilities and rely on technology to get your job done.  

Learn more with our article on why digital skills are crucial for accountants


As some people turn to automated services for their accounting, you’ll need to offer services that a computer can’t. Because of this, financial advising and mentoring is likely a huge part of the future of accounting

You can help your clients comprehend their money and make better financial decisions with these talents. Plus, you can offer a personal touch that makes confusing information easier to digest.


You can expand your accounting practice to provide financial education to your clients and beyond with educational competencies. 

This education could come in the form of workshops or entire courses. Plus, consider creating instructional videos for YouTube or seeking guest lecture opportunities at universities. 

But, you’ll need teaching skills that allow you to transfer your knowledge productively. 


Accountants are often great with numbers, but they may not feel comfortable leading clients. With strong leadership, you can offer instruction and guidance with a human touch

Leadership abilities, among other soft skills, allow you to run your practice more efficiently. Plus, they help you interact with clients positively and professionally. 

See also: What are the most desirable soft skills in accounting? 

Setting a baseline

How can you determine which of these skills you have the largest gaps in? Start by assessing yourself in the key capabilities

You can find plenty of online quizzes that will expose your weak spots and tell you where to improve. For example, Mind Tools has a helpful quiz to assess your leadership qualities. 

Finding ways to close your skills gap

Once you know where you have to build your skills, look to a few sources to do so. For example, you might find:

  • Courses and training
  • Books 
  • Videos 
  • Webinars and conferences

We’ll go over a few options you might look into.


You can find a range of course options on LinkedIn Learning that cover essential technology and software skills specifically for accountants. For example, they have Excel for Accountants. 

You could also look at the Harvard FinTech online short course, which may go deeper into the information.

Mentoring and teaching

Consider reading something like Coaching and Mentoring by Eric Parsloe and Melville Leedham to develop your skills in this area. This book offers techniques for straightforward and productive mentoring and teaching. 

You may also look for videos or books on financial education to find topics to cover and ways to simplify the language for your clients. For example, you might look at:


To improve your leadership skills, consider reading: 

These books outline useful capabilities and tactics to become a better leader and offer more valuable services to your clients. 

Bonus! Check out The Association of Accounting Technicians for a range of courses and workshops dedicated to closing the accountancy skills gap. 

Closing your skills gap for the future of accounting 

Working to close your accountancy skills gap can add longevity to your firm. Just remember, you’ll need to: 

  • Understand the essential knowledge for the future of accounting. 
  • Identify which abilities you need to enhance. 
  • Look to educational materials that can prepare you. 

Just like that, you can improve yourself and your business. While thinking about the future of your practice, you may also want to check out our article on how accountancy firms can become more agile.

Bolster your accountancy practice with Countingup 

As you fill the gap in your accounting knowledge, look to tools that can automate and streamline your services. Save your practice time on manual admin and help your clients keep organised records with Countingup’s free accounting software

It’s built specifically to help you manage your self-employed and sole trader clients.The app automates time-consuming bookkeeping admin for your clients so they can focus on running their business—and send you accurate, structured data to work from. Find out more here.


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