Thursday, January 19, 2006

Supersize Me!

The front page of today's Accountancy Age again reports on that most well publicised, and poorly kept, secret namely that the ICAEW are pressing ahead with plans to integrate with the Institute of Financial Accountants (IFA).

IFA have only 9000 members, and are allegedly embroiled in something of an internal spat amongst themselves over accusations of disciplinary issues within the upper echelons of their leadership.

Needless to say, if the documents that Accountancy Age claim to have are anything to go by, the ICAEW are not put off by the damage to our reputation and credibility that the association with IFA will do to us.

They appear to be carrying on "full steam ahead" to bring IFA on board.

Their rationale being that size matters, and that the integration will address the falling student and membership numbers.

When will the ICAEW realise it is not size that matters, but quality?

Additionally, does it not occur to the ICAEW that the reason for the falling student numbers is the fact that they are unable to provide a syllabus that is relevant to the 21st century?

In fact, as their botched introduction of the 2006 syllabus shows, they are not able to provide a syllabus at all!

We kicked the absurd idea to merge with CIPFA into touch, and we will most certainly do the same with this ridiculous plan.

One small thing that the leadership of the ICAEW seem to have forgotten, is that they have yet to tell the membership of their plans.

This despite the fact that the talks, allegedly, have been going on for at least six months.

Indeed the plans allow for IFA becoming a "fallback" body for failed chartered accountants, especially CIMA and ACCA failures, under what the ICAEW term a "confederation".

Star Trek this is not!

Happy with this?

Proud of your institute?

I am most certainly not!


  1. It states on page 2 of Accountancy Age that the plan is to make ICAEW the Institute for failed CIMA and ACCA finalists.

  2. I dont understand ICAEW strategy.
    I dont think they have learned anything from ACCA. They should look at ACCA's direct membership!!!! If a body is considered equals, ACCA would admit a member of that body. The only caveat is that person would not get a audit rights in UK unless under gone certain training. For ACCA, this is a cash cow. No need to support these group of people as they are not in UK yet they pay the same amount of fees. These members also increased the membership of ACCA. It is a win win situation for ACCA.

    If I were ICAEW, I would look at this class of membership!!!

  3. Just to keep you all informed the IFA have 5,000 members not 9,000.

  4. ICAEW should position itself as the leading accounting body in Europe instead of seeking expansion overseas in countries like China, India or Hong Kong.

    Lost of identity is the major problem with ICAEW. It shouldn’t copy the expansion strategy of ACCA that has originally been established as an international body of accountants.

  5. It’s really a brilliant idea for ICAEW to offer direct membership to bodies of equal standing in western countries like ICAA in Australia, CICA in Canada, ICANZ in New Zealand, SAICA in South Africa or AICPA in the United States. Whereby it should abolish the requirement of passing an aptitude tests in UK Law and Tax before considering admission into ICAEW.

    It is a Win Win situation for both the overseas accounting bodies and ICAEW in which ICAEW could expand its membership base without enlarging those CAs eligible for public practice and also grab some membership fees from overseas. On the other hand, member of renown overseas accounting bodies could save the need to re-qualify in UK for continuing their accounting career.