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Accounting Best Practices, Fifth Edition by Steven M. Bragg Englewood, Colorado

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13–26. Create an Ongoing Training Program for All Accounting Personnel

The efficiency and effectiveness of an accounting department are based on many factors, but a crucial one all too many controllers ignore is training. Many accounting managers simply assume that their staffs have acquired all the knowledge they need in college and in subsequent work experience and need no further training of any kind. This belief is based on the erroneous assumption that all accounting practices are the same, no matter where accountants work, and that employees can be neatly swapped between jobs and companies with no additional training of any kind. Over the long term, this can have a major impact on the accounting staff, for the following reasons:

  • Accounting rule changes. The accounting profession is constantly reviewing changes in how accounting transactions are completed and reported, resulting in a multitude of rule changes, especially in the area of financial reporting. Anyone who has not received formal training in these changes within the past few years must receive training in all rules updates, while those not having been trained in a decade or more will require comprehensive retraining.

  • Computer-specific knowledge. There are many accounting software packages in use, all with their own quirks and foibles. Each of these packages requires special training before employees will fully comprehend how to use them most effectively, as well as (perhaps more importantly) what not to do, since ...

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