It’s no secret we take pride in our inner ‘nerd’ – so, in true Vestie form, we’re celebrating one of the crunchiest subjects of them all: accounting.
International Accounting Day is celebrated yearly on November 10, and as a firm that works closely with fintechs, CPAs and others in the industry, we wanted to pay our utmost respects to a profession rooted deep in unexpected history, policy and necessity.
The earliest book-keeping documents date back to the Mesopotamian region, as far as 5,000 B.C. and reveal the employment of accounting systems in the exchange of tracking goods between temples. There is also evidence of these systems in ancient Egypt and Babylonia, but the most comprehensive findings would first originate from materials belonging to the period of the Roman empire.
However, we celebrate International Accounting Day on November 10 because on that date in 1494, the Venetian mathematician Luca Bartolomeo de Pacioli published an epic tome that included an in-depth look at bookkeeping practices.
His work quickly earned him the title “The Father of Accounting.” During de Pacioli’s time, a plethora of information was archived to show detailed quantifications kept across areas, spanning public revenues, private expenditures, the distribution of commodities, and more.
The industry has, of course, evolved quite a bit since the 15th century, most significantly during the Industrial Revolution. In 1851, Charles Xavier Thomas de Colmar invented the arithmometer, triggering the shift toward computations completed by machines. And, just three years later in 1854, the very first professional accountants’ organization was founded. The Institution of Accountants in Glasgow became the first official organization representing and regulating the accounting profession.
Fast-forward another few hundred years, the accounting industry is going through yet another surge of innovation called “the fourth industrial revolution.” According to Accounting Today, “The first step in an industrial revolution is disruptive technology. The second step is the refinement of that technology to increase its capabilities. The third step is mass adoption and differentiation.”
The fourth revolution is something we Vesties know inside and out: communication and client relationships. Because technology can now do so much of the legwork for accountants, Accounting Today says, focusing on building the necessary trust between client and accountant is where many businesses are placing their efforts.
“The skills you build should be focused on communication and client relationship management, sales, managing different kinds of talent at your firm, and most importantly, translating real-time data into insights while tapping into your vast experience working across many different kinds of business. This affords you the opportunity and unique capability of advising clients on their current and future financial health and growth,” according to Accounting Today.
In honor of today, we wanted to give a big thanks to our internal and external accounting team, and our accounting clients and friends – we applaud you for the tough, important work you do!