Stephen Drew, Smith & Williamson: The Importance of Culture

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25 Nov 2019

Stephen Drew, Regional Managing Partner, discusses with us the importance of culture and how Smith and Williamson are building their brand in the Midlands.

Having established our Birmingham office over seven years ago, Smith & Williamson view Birmingham and the Midlands as an important growth area. We have increased the size of our team by over 25% in the last six months in a drive to build on our full service office for private clients and business services including corporate finance, tax and audit.

What is unique about Smith & Williamson?

Smith and Williamson are unique for an accountancy firm, especially one of the Top 10 largest firms in the UK, where we combine an accountancy, advisory and tax practice with a wealth management business – offering a truly full and inter-generational service.

We have an emphasis on people that own assets, including businesses and building long term  relationships with them. The firm is unique in the fact that our partners are actively encouraged  to invest time with clients not just on chargeable activity but in really getting to know them. 

Smith & Williamson have a different entry point to clients in comparison to other similar sized firms. We are recognised for our Private Client work which then allows us to work alongside clients with regard to their business interests.

Our team have a clear understanding of a client’s individual objectives and aspirations, providing us with a wealth of knowledge and understanding, allowing us to provide advice and assistance with their businesses at every stage of the lifecycle. Client feedback to us that they value our focus on looking after them, their family and their business interests.

How is the role of accountants changing?

As the role of the accountant shifts towards becoming more of an adviser and consultant to clients, Smith and Williamson’s approach is unique and ahead of the curve. Our high level of client interaction allows us to really become their partner both with individuals and businesses. And we test that we are getting that right for clients with a firm wide client care programme.

Technology and cloud accounting is delivering a host of efficiencies in reducing the time required to manage the technical and reporting work. Thus, creating time for Directors and Partners to nurture clients and aiding them with their business interests. 

What are you looking for in Senior Level hires?

As we have a unique approach in comparison to the rest of the market, we are looking for individuals who are entrepreneurial and enjoy investing time with clients and nurturing relationships.

Cultural fit is an essential element to us as a firm when we are looking to attract Senior Managers, Directors and Partners to our Birmingham office.

Smith & Williamson present an opportunity for senior level accountants to join a growing firm that provides you with the scope to shape the direction of the firm in the local region.

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