The world of tax and accounting is changing rapidly, and with it, so is the landscape of continuing professional education (CPE). As technology continues to evolve, it is becoming increasingly important for tax professionals to stay up-to-date with the latest tools, techniques and trends in the industry. In this article, we will explore the CPE future and how technology impacts continuing education for tax professionals. 

There has been a significant shift in how tax professionals approach their work in recent years, with many embracing new technologies to streamline processes, improve accuracy and enhance client relationships. This has led to an increased demand for high-quality CPE programs that provide the necessary knowledge and skills and incorporate the latest technological advancements. As the future of CPE continues to unfold, tax professionals need to adapt to these changes and prepare for the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead. 

By understanding the impact of technology on continuing education and embracing the CPE future, tax professionals can ensure they remain competitive, knowledgeable and up-to-date with industry standards. 

How technology impacts continuing education 

The rapid advancement of technology has profoundly impacted the future of CPE, with many new tools and platforms emerging to support tax professionals in their ongoing quest for knowledge and skill development. One of the most significant developments in recent years has been the rise of online learning platforms like Surgent’s suite of accounting and financial education products, making it easier than ever for tax professionals to access high-quality CPE courses and content from the comfort of their homes or offices. Online learning allows for greater flexibility, convenience and cost savings, making it an increasingly popular choice for busy tax professionals. 

Additionally, the widespread adoption of mobile devices has significantly impacted CPE, with many tax professionals now relying on smartphones and tablets to access learning resources and complete course requirements. This has led to the development of mobile-friendly CPE courses and applications, which offer a more flexible and convenient way for tax professionals to engage with continuing education. As mobile technology continues to advance, this trend will continue to shape the future of tax professionals.


Automation is another example of how technology impacts CPE, with many tax professionals now leveraging advanced software and tools to streamline their workflows and improve efficiency. Automation can help reduce the time-consuming and repetitive tasks associated with tax preparation and compliance, allowing tax professionals to focus on higher-value activities such as tax planning and advisory services. 

In the context of CPE, automation can improve the overall learning experience for tax professionals by providing personalized learning pathways and adaptive content based on individual needs and preferences. For example, an automated learning management system (LMS) could analyze a tax professional’s previous course completions, assessment results and learning preferences to recommend relevant CPE courses and content. This personalized approach can lead to a more engaging and efficient learning experience, as tax professionals can focus on the areas where they need the most improvement. 

Automation can also play a role in streamlining the administration and management of CPE, such as tracking course completions, maintaining records and ensuring compliance with regulatory requirements. By automating these aspects of CPE, tax professionals can spend less time on paperwork and more time on learning and professional development.

Artificial intelligence 

Artificial intelligence (AI) and machine learning (ML) are playing a crucial role in shaping the future of CPE. These advanced technologies can create personalized and adaptive learning experiences, improve content delivery and enhance the overall learning experience for tax professionals. 

AI and machine learning can be particularly beneficial in CPE, as they can help to identify patterns and trends in learner data, allowing for a more targeted and efficient approach to course development and delivery. For example, machine learning algorithms can analyze learner performance data to identify areas where tax professionals may struggle or excel and adjust the course content and delivery accordingly. This adaptive approach to CPE can lead to a more engaging and effective learning experience for tax professionals. 

AI and machine learning can also be used to develop predictive models and analytics, which can help tax professionals anticipate changes in the industry and identify emerging trends and opportunities. By incorporating these insights into their CPE programs, tax professionals can ensure they are well-equipped to navigate the dynamic landscape of the tax and accounting industry.

Tax software innovations 

Innovations in tax software are also playing an increasingly important role in shaping how tax professionals approach their work. Advanced tax software can streamline processes, improve accuracy and enhance client relationships. 

Much like CPE, tax software can benefit from integrating AI and machine learning capabilities, which can help automate time-consuming and repetitive tasks, identify potential errors and discrepancies, and provide real-time guidance and support. By leveraging these advanced features, tax software can help professionals significantly improve their efficiency and effectiveness, allowing them to focus on more strategic and value-added services. 

Another key development in tax software innovation is the rise of cloud-based solutions, which offer greater accessibility, scalability and security than traditional desktop or on-premises applications. Cloud-based tax software allows tax professionals to access their tools and data from anywhere, at any time, making it easier to collaborate with colleagues, clients and other stakeholders.

How technology will impact CPE future

As CPE continues to evolve, tax professionals need to adapt to the changing landscape and embrace the opportunities and challenges that lie ahead. To prepare, tax professionals should prioritize the following: 

  • Stay informed: Keep up-to-date with the latest trends and developments in the tax and accounting industry, including new technologies, regulatory changes and emerging best practices.  
  • Invest in CPE: Choose high-quality programs incorporating technology and offering personalized, engaging and relevant content. Look for programs that are accredited by recognized industry bodies that align with your specific needs and career goals. 
  • Embrace technology: Be open to adopting new technologies and tools to improve your efficiency, effectiveness and client service. Seek training and support to help you learn and master new tools and platforms. 
  • Collaborate and network: Connect with other tax professionals, both within your organization and across the industry, to share knowledge, best practices, and support. Collaborate on projects, attend networking events, and engage with industry groups and associations to stay connected and informed.

Partner with Surgent 

At Surgent, we’re committed to helping tax professionals stay up-to-date with the latest trends, tools and best practices in the industry. Our CPE programs offer first-to-market content impacting the accounting industry and various courses focusing on artificial technology, cybersecurity and many other tech-related topics. 

Partner with Surgent to attract, retain and upskill your teams to drive organizational success for you and your clients. Surgent CPE offers a variety of support for firms and their associates. Here are some of the ways we can help: 

  • Exam preparation: Our innovative technology helps students pass professional exams twice as quickly as other providers. 
  • Continuing education: Keep your personnel informed on the latest subjects through engaging and up-to-date material. 
  • Staff-level training: Our blend of technology and flexibility helps reduce the administrative workload of learning and development. 

Surgent offers top-notch instructors with more than 500 CPE Speaker of the Year awards, more than 1,500 CPE webcasts and 15-plus webinars added monthly, and diverse course offerings with various formats and programming. 


CPE is rapidly evolving, driven by the power of technology and the changing demands of the tax and accounting industry. As tax professionals looking to stay competitive, embracing the opportunities and challenges presented by technology and innovation is essential. 

Tax professionals must prioritize continuous learning and development, invest in high-quality CPE programs, embrace new technologies and collaborate and network with peers and industry thought leaders to succeed in the CPE future. By doing so, they can adapt to the industry’s changing landscape, drive organizational success and deliver the best possible service to their clients.

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