Sean Nicholson

Q. How long have you been a CAPPA member?

A. I have been a CAPPA member for around 20 years.

Q. Tell us a little bit about your history with CAPPA?

A. I started as a member when I first got in to the industry. I always felt very fortunate to get a job in PA so I got involved with CAPPA, first as an instructor at Mount Royal and SAIT and then moving to the Board as a way to give back to the profession. I started as Conference Director then I went to serve as Vice President, President and Past President. In 2015 I received my Lifetime Membership from CAPPA which I am very proud to be recognized for.

Q. What is your current role/company?

A. Currently I am the Manager, Production/Revenue Accounting at Crescent Point Energy.

Q. Can you tell us a little bit about your education and work experience that paved the way to your current position?

A. For work experience I started as a PA at Renaissance Energy and moved to Baytex Energy after that. My first PA Team Lead role was at Samson Canada. My Supervisor at the time gave me some very good advice. He said that people skills will get me farther than technical skills if I want to stay on the leadership track. At that time I decided to focus on leadership skills first and foremost. This allowed me to move to a Manager role very quickly at Fairborne Energy and that focus has allowed me to continue to be successful at both Trilogy Energy and Crescent Point as a PA Manager. Anyone new to a Team Lead role I would recommend working on your coaching and mentoring skills. It is transferable and will help you be successful. From an education standpoint I was able to get an MBA from the Smith School of Business (Queen’s University) in 2015. That is my ultimate academic achievement as I was working full time and helping to raise a young family.

Q. Tell us what you most enjoy about your current role.

A. I mostly enjoy helping others reach their professional goals successfully. It is my job to ensure that people are challenged and moving in a forward progression. When they are successful I feel successful too. There are also very exciting technologies out there that we are embracing and will change how we approach our jobs.

Q. What do you see in the future for production accounting?

A. Technology will have a huge impact on the future of PA. At Crescent Point we have completed a successful proof of concept for robotic process automation (RPA) for single well batteries. We anticipate having this in production in September. We hope to expand RPA to include multi well batteries, master data setup and revenue. The processing always needs to be done but that usually means the analytical work takes a back seat. By embracing RPA we aim to put the emphasis back on the analytical piece rather than having everyone bogged down with processing and handling data. Crescent Point is also in a proof of concept for blockchain using a Royalty Ledger under development. These two technologies represent the future of PA and I am honoured to be a part of making these technologies a reality and viable for the industry.

Q. What advice do you have for those considering a career in production accounting?

A. Don’t be afraid of technology. It is there to ensure we have the maximum amount of time to perform our analytical work which is where we add the most value to the companies we work for.

Q. What is the key benefit you see in CAPPA membership?

A. It is an opportunity to network with your peers and a valuable educational resource.

Q. What do you like to do outside of your career?

A. Outside of work, I like to spend time with my wife and three daughters. I play guitar and sing in a rock band for fun and also play hockey and golf. I like to retreat often to my “cabin” in Las Vegas as often as I can to get away from it all…

Q. Anything else you would like to tell us?

A. I think I’ve said enough. Ha!