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How Filipino accountants can help global companies survive the talent shortage.

Throughout history, the accounting industry has always been an industry with high demand. There will always be a great need for accountants, auditors, and bookkeepers as long as more businesses are opening and more people are seeking help with their taxes. A stable and ever-growing profession, accounting continues to be one of those fields that are not going anywhere anytime soon.


But like every profession, the accounting industry also has its fair share of trials and tribulations. We saw how the coronavirus pandemic forced everything to an abrupt halt—schools, businesses, and multiple sectors, including accounting, throughout the globe. The pandemic has also worsened the already challenging 15-year high global talent shortage, as well as spurring The Great Resignation in 2021 that left the global talent pool in utter shambles.


Based on a report by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA), 75% of American CPAs will be retiring in the next 15 years, meaning new accounting graduates, who have yet to acquire the proper skills and knowledge that come with time, would have big shoes to fill. Meanwhile, businesses in the UK and Australia also continue to struggle in having to fill in accountancy roles amid the dwindling numbers of desirable applicants.


In the Philippines, some small-to-medium enterprises have yet to completely bounce back from the lack of income and clients. This has caused accountants to double their work in updating books and applying the new tax incentives and tax breaks provided by the government. Not to mention the tedious transition from office to remote setup, and the daunting struggle to manage their stream of income.


Now, should you be disheartened? Not at all! Time and time again, the Philippines continues to impress the global market by being one of the fastest economic growth performers in Asia, and you have our robust yet unique workforce to thank for that. In this article, we’ll shed some light on why Filipino accountants can easily and efficiently address the skill gap in western countries.


Quality of education


The Philippine education system is closely patterned by the education system of the United States, so it is much easier for Filipino accountants to orient and settle themselves in the competitive western market when they graduate and head off to the professional world. Not to mention that before Filipino accounting graduates could practice accountancy professionally, they must be able to pass the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) Board Exam which is regulated and administered by the Professional Regulation Commission (PRC). It is regarded as one of the hardest licensure exams in the Philippines which covers six parts: Auditing, Management Advisory Services, Financial Accounting and Reporting; Advanced Financial Accounting and Reporting; Taxation, and Regulatory Framework for Business Transactions.


High English proficiency


When we’re talking about Filipinos and their many competencies, one must not make the mistake of leaving out their high proficiency in the English language. Filipinos are natural conversationalists and are known for their commendable use and fluency of the language, as well as being able to adapt a neutral tone to be universally understood by clients throughout different parts of the world.


English is primarily regarded as the language of commerce and is used in international accounting standards such as the IFRS (International Financial Reporting) or US GAAP (Generally Accepted Accounting Principles). With the Philippines being known as one of the largest English-speaking countries in the world, you’d have no problem with your Filipino accountant fitting into your international roster.


Philippine accounting standards fit western standards


With the Philippine education system being on the same wavelength as western countries in terms of the quality of accounting education and the primary use of English, it is safe to say that the Philippine Accounting Standards (PAS) also share the same affinity with accounting standards in western countries. We also have our version of the US GAAP called Philippine Financial Reporting Standards (PFRS), which is strictly observed and followed by all companies conducting operations in the Philippines in terms of financial reporting.

With some minor modifications, our accounting standards are heavily based on the International Financial Reporting Standards issued by the International Accounting Standards Board (IASB), which guides the financial reporting process of companies in at least 120 countries including the Philippines.


Cost-effective


Amid a global talent shortage, you can either invest more in your existing workforce, hire freelancers to relieve some of the workloads, or simply outsource basic functions to outsourcing firms in developing countries. Now, the Philippines is considered one of the most in-demand outsourcing destinations in the world since you can immediately cut back 70% of your total business costs when you choose to outsource here in the Philippines.


Hiring Filipino accountants is and will probably be the most practical business decision that you can make during times of uncertainty and constant disruption. With a robust workforce that is highly proficient in English, local accounting standards up to international grade, and reduced operational and labor costs, what more do you need?


Cultural match


Filipinos are extremely friendly, hospitable, and service-oriented—and with accounting being one of the most cutthroat industries known globally, you’re going to want someone handling your finances who are ethical, diplomatic, and can easily establish rapport with employers, clients, and the people around them.


Consider your accountant to be your strategic business partner who thinks and acts five steps ahead. You need a trustworthy accountant to not only make sure your books and taxes are in order, but can also help and lead your team to monumental success. And rest assured, there’s no one more perfect and deserving for the job than a Filipino accountant.


Keep your business running with UpStaff Remote


When one door closes, another opens. Even with the current global talent shortage, you can still build your dream team with UpStaff Remote. UpStaff is your go-to offshore accounting partner for when you have specific accounting functions you want to outsource to our in-house veteran accountants, or you just simply need help with setting up an alternative staffing setup for your business. Either way, UpStaff has everything you need. Take advantage of offshoring now by sending us an email at info@upstaffremote.com.



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