Last week Linford Grey attended the ACCA Roadshow in partnership with Practice Ignition. An event hosted by our regulatory body and one of our major app partners.
The day focussed on the changing landscape of the accountancy industry and the new role that accountants will play in saving the world and small business, by becoming trusted and valued advisors that would in turn facilitate the growth of not just their client’s business but their own.
For us though, it was the CEO and Founder of Clarity, an advisory software platform, Aynsley Damery that put the strategic role of the advisor into clear focus for anyone in the room listening and willing to execute on the advice of the day.
Moving the needle
There are 5.7 million small businesses (SMEs) in the UK.
60% of SMEs fail in the first year and only 1 in 10 last more than 10 years. This shows, that in a world of information overload, it is insight and guidance that are missing.
Linford Grey has always been focused on implementing and executing seamless, automated solutions to the everyday grind of business. In doing so we have been able to focus on the strategic importance of running an advisory-led accountancy practice.
We believe that in doing so we have been able to move the needle in favour of our clients. Giving them a higher chance of sustainable, scalable success over the short, medium and long term.
As an industry how we move the needle will depend not just on our commitment to this vision and our desire to realise the full value of our skill set in the world but also on the technology we use to leverage value for our clients. In the industry this is commonly referred to as our ‘tech stack’ and they are the weapons with which we choose to go to war with.
Our Approach to advisory and the benefits
Our approach begins with understanding the client’s end game by asking what success looks like for them over the short and medium term. We then perform a gap analysis, identify key performance indicators, decide on some short-term actions and schedule a regular accountability call.
Given that most SMEs in the UK run at a cashflow deficit month on month, we then prepare a 12-month three-way forecast to identify the extent and timing of any deficits to better understand the implications of this for the business and for stakeholders.
We find that doing this has several benefits for clients, that include but are not limited to:
- A better understanding of the critical success factors
- A new focus on improving key performance metrics
- A renewed vigour for the challenges ahead
- Shared dashboards, real-time updates and alerts improve control and decrease stress
- Trust and reliability are built into the relationship from the outset and moving forward
The accountancy landscape is changing, accountants can no longer survive as mere technical gatekeepers and it seems that the deck is still stacked against SMEs in the UK.
By focussing on our value as advisors, the UK accountancy industry has the opportunity to tip the scales, to make sure more businesses, survive, strive and thrive in their enterprise.
It is a challenge we at Linford Grey have embraced and constantly revisit, adapting and moving with the environment seeking to become the most valued of business partners.
Linford Grey Associates. An intelligent friend. A trusted advisor.
If you’re looking for a new kind of accountant, feel free to get in touch.