Thursday, January 17, 2013

Find A Chartered Accountant

The ICAEW's Find a Chartered Accountant site has received a drubbing on the ICAEW Linkedin group.

David O'Keeffe started the discussion a fortnight ago:
"ICAEW's brand new Find A Chartered Accountant site is embarrassing

The site was launched yesterday but it has clearly not been properly tested and contains incorrect data.

When I checked out my own entry, I discovered it was missing. I tried to contact Tolley - who are providing the service for ICAEW - but, despite two emails, no one got back to me. My entry did mysteriously appear later in the afternoon, but it is incomplete. I have chased again, but still no response.

However, it's not only the incompleteness of my entry (and who knows how many others) that concerns me. Searching at my location (New Malden), the site tells me that there are 17 firms at that location. Expanding the search to within 1 mile of New Malden produces no firms at all (where did the initial 17 go?) This is also true as we go further out, until we get to 30 miles from New Malden where, suddenly, there are 20 firms - but, (wait for it) they are all in NORTHERN IRELAND! Are Tolley using Apple's mapping app, I wonder?

If you search at >100 miles from New Malden, you find a total of 21,381 firms. This, presumably, should be everyone in the database, but it is actually greater than the number of firms listed in the root search (ie with no filters at all).

This would all be mildly amusing (as well as personally irritating that my entry is still incorrect) if it weren't for the fact that this is a public tool. What sort of impression does it create of our Institute and of Chartered Accountants generally? Why was this site launched without proper testing and verification of the data?"
Has anyone else experienced problems with the site?

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