A little over a week ago we attended the CPA Australia Victoria Public Practice conference. The conference, which was held from Thursday 24 May – Saturday 26 May took place in beautiful Lorne.
The purpose of the conference was to build on the strengths of accounting practices and to drive growth with best practice strategies and technological developments. CPA’s explored the drivers of change to find out how to apply business strategies to improve their service and profitability.
A range of subjects were covered including taxation, practice management and technical requirements to name a few. Attendees not only received tax, superannuation and compliance updates, they were also able to improve their practical skills in areas such as internet and social media.
Key topics included:
- Business impact and opportunities: Where Australia and the world will be in 2013 and beyond
- Doing business the ‘Branson’ way
- Essential tax update
- Countdown to carbon – being prepared for Australia’s Clean Energy future
- Financial advice and superannuation – impact on the practice
- Cloning content: Using social media to create raving fans
The Keynote speakers were:
Phil Rutven, the Founder and Chairman of IBIS World, an international corporation providing online business information, forecasting and strategic services. According to CPA Australia, Phil is “possibly Australia’s most respected strategist and futurist on business, social and economic matters.”
John Haylock, Practice Performance Manager BankLink, New Zealand. BankLink provides soutions to streamline the accounting process for over 4,500 accountants and 300,000 of their small business and Self-Managed Super Funds clients in Australia, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.
Robyn Jacobson, Senior Tax Trainer at TaxBanter Pty Ltd. A professional tax trainer for 15 years, Robyn focuses on Small to Medium Enterprise issues, specializing in trusts, small business Capital Gains Tax concessions and Division 7A.
Troy Dean, Director of Geeky Stuff at Tonto Digital. Troy specializes in simplifying the internet for the underdog. He coaches clients about how the internet is changing the way we communicate, do business and connect with each other.
Edwin Bradley FCPA, Former Senior Banking Executive; Adventurer; and Speaker. Ed spent 38 years as a senior banking exec with Resources & Industries Bank of WA (now known as BankWest) and Standard Chartered Bank. He has significant experience and achievement in risk management, strategic planning and corporate finance. He has also climbed Mt Everest, Mt Kilimanjaro and many other mountains in Argentina, Tibet, New Zealand and the Himalayas.
As a sponsor of the event we were able to introduce our products and services to over 300 accountants and possible future clients. It was a great networking opportunity. The conference allowed us to chat with many of our current clients and get some great feedback.
Our snake guessing competition was a hit with the crowd, and one lucky accountant went home with a great prize – a trip for two to the Yarra Valley for lunch and wine tasting (transport included, bonus!). For those who took part – the correct answer was 139 snakes were in the jar!
It’s always great to speak to people from the industry outside of the office in a more relaxed atmosphere. Such occasions really help us not only to better understand the needs of our clients and perspective clients, but to build and strengthen our business by giving our customers what they really want. It’s events as these, where we come out from behind our desks and computer screens that do wonders for business all around.
On the last evening of the event we enjoyed a lovely dinner and drinks. We were entertained by comedian Ben Price, who provided the audience with more than a few good laughs as well as a great jazz band.
Overall, it was a great event and we look forward to attending again in years to come!