CA magazine: June 2020
As we enter our third month of lockdown we are still some way from the calm after the storm. But we are slowly adjusting our outlook and beginning to imagine the ways in which our post-pandemic world will look very different – and those where it might look the same.
The global lockdown has brought with it a growing acceptance of working from home – or WFH, to use the acronym to which we have all become instantly accustomed. If the lingering suspicion that WFH isn’t really W is a casualty of this crisis, then we can chalk that up in the plus column, alongside the demise of “presenteeism”.
Of course, this couldn’t have happened without the extraordinary digital revolution that has already transformed our lives, and will do so at an even greater pace in the coming decades. Videoconferencing will be the new normal, travelling long distances for short meetings will be frowned upon.
ICAS embraces this new landscape. You will have noticed this magazine is – temporarily – digital. But we have also moved as many of our services as possible online and expanded our range of OCR live courses to include many that were face to face. Last month I told you about the launch of the Ask ICAS webinars. Now we are also creating the ICAS Insights series, based on the topics your feedback tells us you want to hear more about.
By the time you read this, we will have conducted our first online examinations – an initiative we have been discussing for a while and which has now been accelerated out of necessity. We continue to champion our CA Connect platform, which links all members to a global network of CAs.
But one thing that won’t change is the human need for personal interaction. A recent YouGov poll, of more than 4,000 respondents, reports that just 9% want life to go “back to normal”. While most are looking to make personal changes, a substantial number also want more emphasis on community and the environment in the future. It may be that, just as the Spanish flu of a century ago gave way to the Roaring Twenties and La Belle Epoque, a mixture of relief and sense of carpe diem will bring on an extraordinary flowering of creativity, both in business and the arts. Let us hope so.
One change we can be sure of – that is the arrival of our new President, Catherine Burnet CA. While she arrives at a time few could have foreseen, she brings a wealth of experience, expertise and enthusiasm, as you will see from her interview. We welcome her to ICAS and hope you enjoy this digital issue.
Read the June issue of CA magazine.