How membership of an accounting networking group can help small and medium-sized accounting practices and their SME clients

3rd May 2018

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Successful accounting practices tend to have developed networks and cooperate with other accountants, as well as professionals such as lawyers, corporate financial advisors, chartered secretaries and qualified valuers.

According to a recent article by the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), small and medium-sized accounting practices (SMPs) should consider how they approach collaboration, networking and alliances with other professionals to help them remain relevant for tomorrow’s small and medium-sized enterprise (SME) clients.

In the last published IFAC Global SMP Survey, over half of respondents said they were part of a collaborative network or at least looking to join one. Altogether, 28% were members of a network (11%), association (10%), or alliance (7%) and a further 24% indicated that their practice was considering joining one.

Key benefits indicated included broadening client service offerings, retaining clients, expanding in size and/or operations and strong networking opportunities. 

The survey findings showed that regardless of jurisdiction, small and medium-sized accountancy practices tend to be the preferred advisors to SMEs. This is due to the in-depth knowledge of SMPs, and their understanding of SME clients' needs, which makes them well-positioned to provide a range of services.

What's more, SMPs have an extra advantage in that their client relationships are often long-term, and centred on personal relationships built on trust and open communication.

How can membership of an accounting networking group help?

Small and medium-sized accounting firms operating independently in the local market can sometimes have limited ability to provide a full range of audit, tax, accounting and consulting services to assist with every client need or enquiry.

However, as part of a global accounting networking group, small and medium sized accounting firms can develop networks and cooperate with other like-minded accountants and professionals from similar sized firms that work with the same type of clients in their region and internationally to gain access to expertise from outside their firm and support their SME clients.

How can small and medium-sized accounting practices remain relevant for tomorrow’s SME clients?

With belonging to a network being one of the top two factors listed for how a small and medium-sized accounting practice can remain relevant for tomorrow’s SME clients, the article also highlighted the following as important:

●      Leveraging the latest technology
●      SMPs positioning themselves as trusted business advisors
●      Effective talent management

With business advisory services set to be more of a focus for small and medium-sized accountancy practices, membership to a high-quality accounting association provides independent audit, tax, accounting and consulting firms with the opportunity to collaborate with other like-minded professionals from similar sized firms that share the same values and work with the same type of SME clients. This allows them to share experiences and expertise with each other as part of a trusted referral network.

MGI Worldwide provides member firms with access to partner-level support from a collaborative network with some 5,000 professionals in more than 80 countries around the world. Here are just some of the benefits of belonging to our network.

Find out why our members are so proud to be a part of the MGI Worldwide global accounting network here.

Are you looking for high-quality international accounting associations to join?

If you are looking for accountancy membership organisations to join, are interested in becoming a member of our international accounting association and would like to talk to us about membership of MGI Worldwide, informally and without commitment, please complete our membership enquiry form and a member of the MGI Worldwide team will be in touch.

MGI Worldwide is a top 20 ranked global accounting network with some 5,000 independent auditors, accountants and tax experts in over 260 locations around the world.

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