British Accountancy Awards 2011 – four weeks to deadline

WITH four weeks to go before entries close for the British Accountancy Awards, it is worth considering the qualities that won in last year’s event.

Winner in the mid-tier category 12 months ago was Hallidays, Stockport’s oldest firm, which won with a recession-beating performance.

The judges said: “Hallidays identified some strong successes over the year and used a number of metrics to back up a positive growth story.”

This year’s awards has been remodelled to give renewed focus on practice as a result of consultation with an awards advisory panel made up of some of the most respected members of the profession.

The deadline for entries this year is 9 September, with the gala dinner following on 30 November at Old Billingsgate Market in London. Click here for more information.

Hallidays won after transforming the firm. In an interview, Hallidays’ managing partner Nigel Bennett said: “The truth is that the standard of many accounting firms is poor. They don’t focus on the client, they focus on compliance work. Clients want a business advisor who is like a non-executive director. Very few do that and anyone who does it is going to be successful.”

In 2010, the firm: doubled its number of leads; improved cash flow; grew fees by 5%; dropped timesheets in favour of fixed-price agreements; completed work on new practice management software; and launched a new client care programme. In addition, an in-house recruitment agency was set up, not only to find its own new recruits but also staff for other local firms.

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