Emma Peterson, Director FinTech Awards Wales & Finance Awards Wales Meets:
Head of ACCA Cymru/Wales
Tell me about your business?
ACCA is the world’s most forward-looking professional accountancy body. We’re a thriving global community of 219,000 members and 527,000 students based in 179 countries that upholds the highest professional and ethical values. We believe that accountancy is a cornerstone profession of society that supports both the private and public sectors. That’s why we’re committed to the development of a strong global accountancy profession and the many benefits that this brings to organisations, individuals and society.
Our qualifications develop forward-thinking professionals with the financial and business skills essential for the creation of sustainable economies and flourishing societies. Every day, ACCA professional accountants support people and organisations in making sound decisions and doing the right thing. We build public trust by creating an inclusive profession with people from all backgrounds, bound by a common global code of ethics and committed to updating their skills to meet ever-changing needs.
Why did you choose to sponsor the Finance Awards Wales 2021?
We are delighted to sponsor the Finance Awards Wales as they have quickly become the major awards in Wales for recognising outstanding achievements by finance teams and individuals.
What impact do you feel the Awards have made in the Finance sector in Wales?
They have played a vital role in recognising the crucial part that finance professionals play in supporting their businesses and organisations, regardless of size or sector. This has been very clear during the pandemic, and their role will be even more important as we recover from the effects of covid-19 on the economy and society.
How has your business been affected by Covid-19 and how have you been able to respond to this?
Like so many others, as an organisation we’ve had to change a lot of what we do – moving all CPD, events and exams online, working from home and maintaining partner relationships remotely. The impact on our members and students has been huge, and varied by sectors, but I am very proud of the support that our members have provided to businesses and organisations, the way that our students (and their tutors!) have adapted to huge challenges, and finally of the support we have provided for members and students across Wales. The insights we’ve gained from our members have been important in informing the Welsh and UK Governments of the situation across Wales and across sectors, and in informing the development of various support packages.
How do you feel the Welsh economy will fare over the next 12 months?
The early signs are encouraging but obviously varies according to sector, and within sub-sectors. There are further challenges ahead as the business support is reduced and loans are due to be repaid but we will continue to work with our partners, including the Welsh and UK Governments, to make sure that ACCA and its members play a key role in supporting the recovery and in developing the next generation of accounting and finance talent.
What plans do you have for your business in the next year?
A key aim is to work with all our partners across Wales to highlight accountants’ role in supporting a sustainable recovery and making sure that people across the business community and beyond understand how ACCA can help them – from the expertise that our members provide to their businesses, providing a pool of well-qualified new talent, supporting employers to upskill their teams and our research activity that points the way ahead for the future of the profession.