Mergers are becoming more commonplace in the accounting industry. The advantages are evident; pooled resources, increased market share and potentially greater efficiencies. However, to achieve these outcomes merged accounting firms need to first overcome the biggest hurdle – harmonising the operations to allow for one synergised, well-oiled accounting firm. The key to this harmony is to create an agreement prior to the merger.
The creation of an agreement will avoid discrepancies in expectations and set clear goals for the future. The agreement should contain a ‘what happens if’ contingency plan, which both accounting firms agree to early on. It is not uncommon for accounting firms to experience delays and challenges as a result of a merger where both parties are not in agreeance so it is imperative to ensure there is open and honest communication in the planning phases of the merger.
For the benefit of your accounting firm and your clients, follow the steps outlined below to ensure the continuation of your Audit Shield service is seamless in a merger situation.
The steps to take for your Audit Shield service
- Agree: Both accounting firms involved with the merger need to create an agreement which includes approval of the continuation of the Audit Shield service to their clients.
- Review: Identify and settle any outstanding claims with Accountancy Insurance (if any) as soon as possible as the claims belong to the pre-merger firms.
- Transfer: Discuss with your Account Manager as to how the ongoing participation of all paid clients will be managed under the new merged firm until the next policy expiry date.
- Align: Inevitably policy renewal dates for both firms will differ. Discuss the renewal process with your Account Manager, confirming how to merge the two policies into one new policy and understanding the best way to practicably facilitate this process.
For more information please talk to your Account Manager or contact Accountancy Insurance on 1300 650 758 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Charlotte Gell | Accountancy Insurance