Inside ICAS: Top talking points from March 2022
From our first Admission Ceremony since 2019 to the launch of our new mentoring platform, your Office Bearer team review their top talking points from March.
President Bruce Pritchard CA, Deputy President Indy Hothi CA, and Vice President Clive Bellingham CA highlight some of the key ICAS initiatives and activities they were talking about during March.
Bruce’s top talking point
It was one of the privileges of my presidency, to be there on the day to congratulate in person and welcome our new colleagues into the profession.
Bruce Pritchard CA, ICAS President
"On Saturday 26 March I was at the Edinburgh International Conference Centre speaking to an audience of almost 300 newly qualified CAs and their friends and family. The event in question was the ICAS Admission Ceremony – the first since what now seem like the very distant, pre-pandemic days of 2019.
It was one of the privileges of my ICAS presidency, to be there to congratulate in person and welcome all our new colleagues into the profession. As I said in my speech on the day, it’s incredible to think of all that’s happened in the two years since our last Admission Ceremony – the struggles and hardships we have faced – the adversity that those in attendance had to overcome whilst working full time, completing their training and sitting (and passing) exams.
No one knows what the future holds but whatever happens, with the ICAS CA qualification in their back pockets those young women and men are equipped to grasp the opportunities, overcome the challenges and lead the way.
Congratulations once again to all our newly qualified CAs, including those who weren’t able to attend the ceremony in Edinburgh. The future of the profession truly is bright."
Indy’s top talking point
My personal board is comprised of colleagues, family, friends and, of course, mentors.
Indy Hothi CA, ICAS Deputy President
“The benefits of mentoring are well known and there’s no doubt that mentoring has played a key role in my own career, from its early days to now, helping me to get started, to learn and grow and realise many of my ambitions.
When I think about companies and governance, they all have boards to provide challenge, counsel and support to the executive team. And as individuals, we have our own ‘boards’ too. My 'personal board' is comprised of colleagues, family, friends and, of course, mentors. They are there when I need to call upon them, as a sounding board, to offer advice and provide support.
Finding a good mentor hasn’t always been easy, especially for the self-employed or CAs working in smaller firms. However, with the launch of Career Connections, the process should now be far simpler. The new platform is designed to enable relationships between ICAS Members (and CA Students), connecting prospective mentors and mentees, no matter where they are in the world. You can search for mentors through the platform, offer your expertise as a mentor, send messages and set up and host either online or in-person meetings."
Find out more about the platform and start working on your own ‘personal board’.
Clive’s top talking point
...with many organisations now publicly announcing their net zero commitments, stakeholders want to be able to rely on reporting and to hold corporates to account.
Clive Bellingham CA, ICAS Vice President
“Alongside my role as Vice President, I’m also Chair of an ICAS expert working group representing investors, academics, preparers, auditors and non-executive directors. Our group recently published a report entitled, ‘Sustainability: The necessary conditions for the reporting of high-quality information’.
The report was published against a backdrop of ever-increasing interest in sustainability and demand for reliable information around what an entity is doing to mitigate climate-change risks and the opportunities that transition to a greener economy may bring. And with many organisations now publicly announcing their net zero commitments, stakeholders want to be able to rely on their related reporting and to be equipped to hold corporates and their leaders to account for achieving their stated commitments.
Our paper acknowledged that, unlike financial reporting, sustainability reporting is still evolving, and as such the internal systems and processes for the collection of sustainability-related data aren’t as mature as they are for financial data. Arguably, however, sustainability reporting has a much wider audience and may even extend as far as the public at large, hence the need for greater transparency and accountability in the related reporting."
What else has got us talking
President's Dinner: Bruce hosted the ICAS President's Dinner 2022 in Edinburgh, which was attended by 180 guests.
Ukraine-crisis resource hub: ICAS launched a new Ukraine-crisis resource hub to keep you updated on the latest information on current sanctions and professional obligations, and with links to the available support and guidance.
21st century tax-debt collection: ICAS responded to an HMRC call for evidence on options for modernising the collection of tax debt and how it could improve collection from businesses choosing not to pay.
ICAS and global accounting bodies unite on nature: ICAS was amongst the world’s leading accountancy institutes that joined together to support a new call to action in response to the nature crisis, ahead of the upcoming UN Convention of Biological Diversity (CBD) COP 15.
Scottish Parliament: ICAS gave evidence to the COVID-19 Recovery Committee of the Scottish Parliament as part of their Stage 1 consideration of the Coronavirus (Recovery and Reform) Bill.
International Women's Day: To mark International Women's Day 2022, ICAS’ Championing Unique Perspectives series featured an interview with Samantha Frost CA, Director of ThinkWellbeing and Think Consulting and a member of ICAS Members Board. Samantha shared her thoughts and insights on gender bias in the workplace, shifting attitudes towards career breaks, the power of mentoring and the pressure that’s placed on women to act as role models.
That’s all for this month’s round-up. Join us again in a few weeks to find out what else has got us talking.