Accountancy Practice Conference - The Future

Join us at our exciting conference looking at the current status and future of the accounting profession. Join other leaders to discuss the future landscape and evolution of the industry, exploring themes such as technology, audit, leadership and much more.

This conference will run as a live virtual conference via Zoom.

Bookings can be made as usual online or via emailing our enrolments team.


Loading events...

Full conference agenda


Andrew Paul

In this session Andrew will look at what is going on in the technology space which firms should be aware of.

Should we be in the cloud? What about AI? What is the next big thing going to be?

Andrew will look at the general themes in technology and try and give some thoughts on where the forward looking firm should be positioning itself.


Lisa Leighton

Lisa will take us on the whistle stop journey of how BHP have grown from a £7m turnover local practice in 2010 to a regional player, featuring at 35 in the Top 100, with over 350 staff across 5 locations, becoming a Sunday Times Top 100 Best Company to work for. This session will cover the practical things that BHP have implemented to get it where it is today including: acquisitions strategy, leadership training, employee initiatives, investment in technology and advisory services.

The session will end with an ‘ask me anything’ section.


Adrian Gibbons

So where does this leave the small/medium sized audit firm that deals with a range of non-public interest entities?

This session will consider the impact of the following on audits:

  • The Brydon Report
  • New Ethical Standards
  • The impact of the audit of less complex entities
  • Audit quality and regulation
  • Should firms keep their audit licence or is this a broken service?

The whole of the audit profession will face increased interest from the public and the regulators will be keen to prove that they are responding to the public.


Dave Goodyear

Make sure you are on top of the best marketing practices your firm should be utilising and the free tools available to you. This session will take you through the essentials of marketing, while also looking at upcoming innovations and developments in the industry that you need to be aware of.


Sunil Shah

This session looks at how Accountancy practices can obtain INSIGHTS from Practice Management DATA to make meaningful DECISIONS and take appropriate ACTION in a timely manner, using tools such as Microsoft PowerBI.

PowerBI enables data from different sources including (but not limited to) Tax, Accounting and CRM software to be combined with the Practice Management data, to create actionable KPIs, Dashboards and Reports.


David Norris

While so many industries have changed the way they sell products and services, most accountants still take time a timesheet, write off some time and then surprise the client with a bill at the end of assignment.

This session will consider the pros and cons of timesheets, look at how other industries price goods / services and how they advertise their goods / services, and also discuss other ways of pricing. There will also be examples of the pricing models of some innovative accountancy firms.


John Sharkey

The Coronavirus pandemic has accelerated and accentuated one of the most seismic periods of change in the Profession’s history, making the need for effective leadership greater than ever before. 

This session will look how practice leaders can ensure they have the fundamentals in place to enable their practice, their people and their clients to achieve future success and take advantage of the new opportunities that these unprecedented changes provide.

Conference speakers


Andrew joined Mercia in 1999 as part of the Audit and Accounts technical team and lectured on Practical Training Workshops, Paper and Paperless Audit Manual courses and undertook Peer Reviews. He has also been a Training Event Manager.

At the end of 2012 Andrew left Mercia to work In Rwanda for six months, helping to build the capacity of finance teams working in the healthcare sector with the US Charity Partners in Health. On returning to the UK, Andrew held the post of Finance Manager for Compassion UK, a £30m+ income Charity.

Andrew returned to Mercia in Autumn 2014 as part of the Audit and Accounts technical team.

Andrew retains lots of contacts in the charity sector and is a regular volunteer at events such as London Olympics 2012 and Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games as well as being a keen Leicester Tigers supporter.


Lisa joined the team in 1995, qualified as a Chartered Accountant in 1998 and later was appointed Partner in 2008. Lisa has an extensive knowledge and practical experience in providing accounts auditing, business advice and corporate finance services to a wide range of organisations. She also spent 7 years working in the corporate finance team and until 2018 was the Treasurer for Cavendish Cancer Care.

Lisa and Hamish Morrison became Joint Managing Partners in April 2019.


Previously the Managing Director of SWAT UK, Adrian is now one of Mercia’s A&A Consultants. He is a very entertaining speaker who lectures regularly on audit and accountancy topics for the ICAEW, ACCA, District Societies and other training groups. Outside work, Adrian is a keen sailor and is currently Vice Commodore of the Colne Yacht Club based in Brightlingsea.


Prior to joining Mercia in 2013, Dave worked at advertising agencies in Leicester and London for several years working across numerous large B2C and B2B clients.

Dave is the Head of Client Marketing Innovation and is responsible for creating new products and innovations for both Mercia and our clients. Along with innovation, Dave also looks after the digital marketing products for Mercia, ensuring they evolve and adapt to ever changing requirements.


Sunil is the IT Partner at MGR, specialising in Business Intelligence solutions.

Sunil is a qualified Accountant, but has spent most of his career developing a variety of database applications to make the practice (and some of their clients) more efficient and effective.

Data visualisation and analytics using Microsoft PowerBI are his current areas of focus, together with streamlining processes using PowerApps and PowerAutomate (all part of the Microsoft’s Business Application Power Platform).


John is Director of Mercia's Management Training Division. For over 20 years, John has been helping professional firms to increase profitability through more efficient and effective working practices by harnessing the untapped potential of their people and delivering service excellence to their clients.

He joined the Mercia consultancy team in 1998, having previously been the Managing Director of a training consortium in the Thames Valley. He has built Mercia's Management Training Division into one of the leading providers of management and personal skills consultancy to the independent accountancy sector. His presentations are renowned for their energy, enthusiasm and practical relevance and for challenging participants.


David is the Product Director. He joined SWAT UK in 2000 as an audit lecturer and reviewer, having qualified as a Chartered Accountant with South West firm Thomas Westcott.

In 2014, David was appointed to the Board as Training Director and is responsible for the content, delivery and development of all SWAT UK courses throughout the country and over the web, before moving onto his current role.

He also remains responsible for the Southern region and for the service delivered to all clients in that region, and he still performs a large number of file review visits and lectures, mainly in the areas of audit and financial reporting.

One Day Conference