Sungesh cropped headshot 2UHY Haines Norton Audit Partner Sungesh Singh recently attended the 2014 UHY AGM in Germany.

This year I had the opportunity to attend UHY’s 2014 Annual General Meeting. The conference welcomed 150 delegates from around the world and was proudly hosted by member firm Dr. Langenmayr GmbH Wirtschaftsprüfungsgesellschaft in Germany. Exactly, please don’t ask me how to pronounce that, but I must say that the German hospitality blew me away.

“Collaboration For Growth”

The theme of the conference largely concentrated on “collaboration for growth” and included interesting topics on the future of international networks, UHY’s own strategy, business internationalisation and client experience. It’s quite interesting to see how the accounting world perceives international networks. Expert opinion is that there will be a significant change in the overall make up of networked firms in the next few years, where new alliances will be formed and causing many firms to either rise in rankings, reduce in size or even disappear!

“International Rankings”

On the topic of rankings, from January 2015 UHY will formally adopt its ranking as a network firm and this will enable us to promote ourselves as a member of the 16th biggest global accountancy network. Our previous position was 25th. This is a significant move upwards, and the fundamental reason for such a change is due to our prestigious membership with the Forum of Firms. Overall the move conforms with the UHY Strategy Plan 2011-2015 which sets goals for establishing UHY as a “leading global network of accountancy firms”.

It is a rather exciting time to be part of the UHY network as we look forward to utilising our new position to project more cross-border business, promote a stronger brand and collaborate towards a bigger and stronger UHY.

“Future of Audits

Another topic discussed at the AGM was the future of audits. It’s quite hard to imagine but again, according to experts, perception has it that the auditing world will become even more paperless. Currently the international audit environment uses electronic working papers and stores data using specific software. In future periods the actual auditing checks will be computerised and this would mean that the auditor could do a lot of work from the office, without visiting the premises. I can’t imagine all this at the moment, but 10 years ago I couldn’t see myself working in a paperless environment – and today I can’t live without it!

Overall

It’s always good to build stronger relationships with like-minded people who pretty much do the same thing that you do every day but may have a slightly different perspective on things. At the end of most discussions we indulged in German beer and the content seemed to get heavier on the second and third days…. I wonder why?!  Overall it was very enjoyable and I’ve returned to New Zealand relatively well charged.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank our clients, both locally and internationally, for their support and business throughout the year. My special thanks and best wishes also to my staff who have shown persistence in upholding audit quality in what was a difficult 2014 audit period.

Have a Merry Christmas and wonderful 2015.

To discuss this article please contact Sungesh Singh at sungeshs@uhyhn.co.nz or phone 839-2184.