CPA firms are growing their revenue and billing rates, thanks to effective practice management, according to a newly released publication.

Ioma's 2008 CPA Firm Statistical Analysis Reference Handbook found that one-quarter of CPA firms expect revenues to grow more than 10 percent this year, while 44 percent expect revenues will rise 5 percent to 10 percent this year. CPA firms are taking advantage of the revenue growth to raise their fees. They are also exploring alternative billing and fee arrangements, while getting more comfortable with moving away from the traditional billable hour.

Billing rates for CPA firm owners averaged $229 per hour, $15 per hour above last year's rates, with non-equity owners surging to $235 per hour this year.

Overall, partner compensation (excluding bonuses or perks) rose to $344,165 for the highest range of owners in 2007. The average group earned $216,619 and the lowest group, $153,317. The average salary for a non-equity owner also soared, to $140,851, with an average bonus of $16,074.

Among staff CPAs, supervisors/managers billed on average $167 per hour in 2007; seniors, $121; juniors, $102; juniors who had not yet passed the CPA Exam, $91; paraprofessionals, $81; firm administrators, $99; and marketing directors, $115. Of these, only administrators and marketing directors averaged less than last year. The full report costs $449 and is available from www.ioma.com.

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