Ian Lloyd is a Wiltshire man through and through and has lived near Salisbury for some 50 years. Outside of work he is currently vice chair of governors at Wiltshire College and has been heavily involved in seeing the College achieving ‘good’ at Ofsted.
We interviewed Ian to find out more about his career, his new role as general practice and audit manager at Milsted Langdon and his plans for the future of the Bath office.
How did you start out in the accountancy world?
I started my career with a small firm in Salisbury, who merged with national firm Moore Stephens. It was here that I met my wife Sarah. To progress my career, I left to join another local firm who are now part of Francis Clark, where I duly qualified and became office manager. It was at this firm that I specialised in the farming and agricultural sector.
In the late 90s I started at Strutt & Parker, Salisbury, as Head of their Client Accounting Department for the South and South West. The role at Strutt & Parker saw my team looking after local prestigious estates and farming enterprises. In 1996, S&P undertook a restructure of this department and I was asked to move to Chelmsford where the national team was to be centralised. I politely declined and decided to revert to professional practice life again.
I joined Monahans’ Chippenham office in 1998, where I served as lead partner for 16 years, until September 2014. During this time, I oversaw three office moves and two mergers and was heavily involved in the local community, being President of the Chippenham Chamber of Commerce and also working closely with the Wessex Chambers, now Inspire.
From my experience, within a number of practices, I would say I know what works and what doesn’t work. I have not stood still in my career and I have been well travelled. I believe I am therefore well placed to advise all businesses in the locality.
What services does the Bath office provide?
We are a full service accountancy office, providing additional/specialist support in corporate finance headed up by Susannah Adams, incorporating buying and selling of businesses, raising finances and valuations. Helen Gregory supports with forensic accounting, a specialist area that is led by Roger Isaacs who is well known across the UK and sits on the national committee.
The Bath office also has a strong tax specialism, with Rachael Verinder (a Chartered Tax Adviser) heading up this area of work. Some of you may know Rachael in Wiltshire for her work with Inspire, as a representative on the partner board. Rachael was formerly with Target in Bath and then Grant Thornton in Bristol, and specialises in all areas of tax.
Other specialists include Gill Freeman who works as our charities and academies expert and Dan Kenyon who leads our business intelligence support for clients. The business intelligence team interprets accounting data, by way of our bespoke software and produces efficient, timely and effective management reporting, which helps strategic planning and business improvement.
In your opinion what are the challenges the accountancy industry faces at the moment?
The current tier system of the accountancy market is changing rapidly. It’s becoming more apparent than ever that to survive you need to have a unique selling point that differentiates you from the competition. Those offering advisory services support to businesses will flourish and those that have specialisms/sector specialisms are likely to be the ones that succeed.
We need to be aware of what is happening in the marketplace internationally and the impact over the next five years. I’m an accredited Mindshop facilitator, which means I am suitably qualified to give strategic advice and advisory support. The network offers benchmarking and new technology for the benefit of clients and businesses. Milsted Langdon is part of the MGI network, which allows us to access colleagues and associated firm across the UK, Europe and the rest of the world; all sharing in best practice and supporting each other.
What are your ambitions for the Bath Milsted Langdon office?
I joined the firm as lead partner in March this year and under my leadership we have already seen rapid growth. My plan moving into 2016 and beyond is for us to be the ‘go to’ firm in Bath, incorporating the surrounding area of Wiltshire, for business and professional contacts. We are approaching this by offering national specialisms at a local level and at a cost that is affordable, providing value for money.
We are also keen to be embedded into the business community locally. We have just signed up as partners/sponsors of Bath Rugby and in Wiltshire we are now partners of Inspire/Wessex Chambers of Commerce.
What is the key to your success in business?
My success lies in my lasting relationships with clients and professional contacts. I spend my time working with clients to become their trusted adviser and add value to them by looking at the total offering, including their personal circumstances and work-life balance. I become part of their team and offer a quality, accessible point of reference.
My passion lies in helping clients set a strategy, implement it, review the growth of their business, and then consider succession planning and exit routes.
Tell us something we wouldn’t know about you
I represented Wiltshire and Dorset at schoolboy level at rugby and cricket, schooling at Bishop Wordsworth Grammar School, Salisbury; playing alongside Bath and England RFU players Richard (Duracell) Hill and David (Eggie) Egerton.
One of my schoolmates was Ralph Fiennes, a thespian at the tender age of 18 years who was destined to be a star… how our lives have changed! I would love his bank balance.
To find out more about Milsted Langdon visit: www.milsted-langdon.co.uk or call the Bath office on: 01225 904940