Editor's note

Issue 654

World Survey 2024

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Accounting professionals proficient in data analytics, cybersecurity, and emerging tech will drive business growth

Welcome to our 2024 World Survey edition. This year’s World Survey 2024 ranks 49 global accounting Networks and Associations. For FY23, overall growth remained positive for the top 31 accountancy networks, sitting just shy of double figures at 8%, bringing total fee income to $274.8bn. Meanwhile, the 17 associations that took part achieved a total fee income to $29bn, an 8% increase on last year. As well as the overall World Rankings, this issue also includes breakdowns by service line and region, as well as rankings for The Big Four.

I also wanted to share that at the start of this year, our editorial team received a very positive response from Global accounting CEOs to a short survey including questions on how they value and use IAB’s World Survey Rankings. The overwhelming response was that our USP rings true in the minds of our readership, as we continue to focus on providing thought leadership, benchmarking industry growth across markets and providing deep analysis, critical to the profession’s growth.

Looking to the year ahead, Global accounting leaders predict that, in 2024, the increased focus on advanced technology, in particular AI, will drive a rise in demand for skilled talent. Businesses will need to recruit skilled staff who are able to tackle expanding business needs through the use of data analytics and management of cybersecurity initiatives. There is also an emphasis on collaboration, with many firms outsourcing services to fellow members and an increase in Private Equity investment into the sector. Firms are also facing an ongoing ‘war for talent’, as they try to retain existing staff whilst attracting and upskilling a new generation of entrants into the profession. These are all tall orders, and ones that require careful re-evaluation of an organisation’s strategic objectives for the future.

To this end, I have connected with 14 accounting industry leaders to discuss market challenges and their plans for business growth. Read what they have to say in our feature, “What’s in store for Accounting’s evolving landscape in 2024?”

Elsewhere in this issue, IAB reported Kris Cooper speaks to Allan Koltin, Koltin Consulting Group CEO, about private equity trends in accountancy; We hear from Alice Grey Harrison, managing partner at AGH Consulting Group, on building a positive company culture and how strategic communications can foster trust and help to algin staff with corporate goals; and we hear from author and social development specialist Ildiko Almasi Simsic about the need to deploy social impact tools to Attract and retain the best Gen Z talent

We welcome your feedback and continued participation.

Zoya Malik, Editor-in- Chief, Financial Services Practice, GlobalData