AA Awards 2008: Small Firm of the Year

City-based FD Solutions has maintained outstanding growth to walk away with
the 2008 Accountancy Age Small Firm of the Year award.

The firm has recorded a compound annual growth rate of 60% over the past four
years, and is on track to reach the £4m annual turnover target set for 2008/09.

Currently servicing 100 clients – 17 of which are AIM quoted, FD Solutions
prides itself on its low staff churn rate and an ongoing commitment to employee
training and motivation.

Around 30 full-time staff employed by the firm dedicate half their time to
servicing clients charged on an hourly rate. The acquisition of clients has
averaged one a week over three years.

A consultative meeting is arranged within 24 hours of initial contact with a
client and an FD is then appointed for an immediate start. Several FDs can be
tasked with working on the contract as a team.

The judges praised the firm for its distinct approach to business. ‘FD
Solutions is a firm that’s adopted a very interesting model and demonstrated
innovation and strong growth,’ they said.

The original business model has evolved from being a team of pure FDs to
include those with skills as IT systems implementers and IFRS specialists. A
large proportion of client work is generated via recommendations by accountancy
firms who recognise the need for FD specialisation.

The business has expanded operations into the Home Counties and Birmingham,
as well as having invested in the Australian market. This year’s win is a first
for FD Solutions having never previously been nominated as a finalist.

People power

FD Solutions prides itself on the strength of its people who are free to work
in an independent environment. The firm employs its staff rather than using them
on a sub-contracting basis or selling them franchises. A director is assigned to
each and acts as a mentor and ongoing training and development is facilitated by
six training days each year.

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