What challenges does the industry face this year? How good is the knowledge level of tax consultants and auditors in Germany? On behalf of Handelsblatt, SWI Finance once again surveyed and analysed the professional competencies of German tax consultants and auditors. Almost 4,200 tax consultants and more than 800 auditors took part in the study. The results have now been published.
Best Tax Consultants 2020 & Best Auditors 2020
In January and February 2020, companies of any size were given the opportunity to participate in the study via an online survey. A total of over 30,000 invitations were sent out. The test design was developed in cooperation with the corporate law firm Buschmann Partnerschaft mbB Rechtsanwälte Steuerberater. More than 600 regional tax consultants and over 100 auditors were given distinctions as a result of the study.
Recruitment & digitization continue to be the biggest challenge for the industry.
An important component of the survey conducted by SWI Finance was the assessments of tax consultants and auditors opnions on the development of the industry.
Interestingly enough, both tax consultants and auditors are currently facing the same challenges: As in previous years, the recruitment of suitable employees caused quite a few headaches. 86 percent of all tax consultants and auditors surveyed – and as many as 95 percent of the large law firms – see themselves confronted with the ongoing challenge of finding qualified staff.
Digitization and the associated advancement of technology is also an important topic for the future. 78 percent of the respondents stated this as a major challenge. The proportion was particularly high among medium-sized and large law firms – at more than 85 percent.
Mixed feelings about German tax law
The responses did not paint a positive picture of German tax law. 71 percent did not think that it was fundamentally fair. 82 percent of the participants stated that the tax authorities are outsourcing more and more activities to the taxpayer and 65 percent felt that tax law is becoming more and more complicated.
The assessment of the Bureaucracy Relief Act III (Bürokratieentlastungsgesetz III) was also clear: 93 percent did not expect any noticeable relief.
Positive assessment of the economic situation
Answers to the question about satisfaction with the economic development of law firms in 2019 were predominantly positive (83 percent).
The participants were also predominantly confident about the future economic situation. 71 percent (still unaffected by the Corona crisis) assumed an (rather) increasing trend.
A good third of the respondents answered positively to the question about a planned entrepreneurial change in the next five years. Compared to the previous year, however, the proportion declined (2019: over 40 percent). One fifth were aiming to buy another law firm, 12 percent were planning a merger. At the time of the survey, abandonment or sale was an issue for only 3 percent.
Do you have questions or further interest?
If you are further interested in our study, please contact the study director Johannes Higle by mail to email@example.com. The documentation of the industry developments is available for a nominal fee of 100 Euro (plus VAT).
Do you have any questions regarding methodology or participation possibilities? We will be happy to answer them at firstname.lastname@example.org