Adam Harper is director of professional standards and policy at the Association of Accounting Technicians
I am honoured to have been asked to be a judge for the Yorkshire Accountancy Awards for the last two years, and I was delighted to have chaired the judging panel this year.
Given the unprecedented nature of the last two years, and recognising that the accountancy profession has not been impervious to the impact that the pandemic has had, there continues to be significant reflection on the pressures you have all faced in advising and supporting your clients or your employers. Once again, through the submissions received this year, the role that the accounting profession has played in helping to keep businesses going during this period is extremely evident.
The panel did note, however, that there were a couple of other very strong themes emerging across a number of the categories.
Those themes encompassed stories of strong growth within the sector and a clear focus on the future. This is particularly encouraging, and bodes well for the continued impact you can have in terms of wider economic growth and the way in which you can support the growth and stability of businesses within the region.
Another strong theme that emerged was the commitment to supporting your employees. There was significant evidence of the investment made in wellbeing and mental health initiatives and resources. This critical recognition of the scope to ensure and enhance the resilience of your own teams can often be overlooked in terms of its importance, so to see so many positive outcomes on the back of that investment was richly rewarding.
As ever, the task of judging such a wide range of high quality entrants across all of the award categories is as enjoyable as it is challenging. Enjoyable in the sense of the insight it provides into the rich contributions made across the sector, and challenging in the sense that we wish you could all be winners, but we had to take some tough decisions.
I would therefore like to give a big thank you to my fellow judges for their time and commitment in reviewing all of the submissions and for their enthusiastic engagement in the judging debates.
And also, I’d like thank all of you who submitted your applications, the time and care you evidently took in preparing them enhanced our experiences as judges.