Home' A Plus Magazine : Feb 2013 Contents 20 February 2013
Creating a strong message
Institute vice-president Mabel Chan
urges better communications with
members, stakeholders and the public
The Institute’s membership is grow-
ing rapidly – it has risen by about
1,800 members annually in recent
years – and that’s a growing community that
we need to represent. It is important that we
provide a supportive environment for mem-
bers’ professional development.
Accounting remains one of the most
popular and respected professions in Hong
Kong. At the same time, accountants are
seeking better positions and we need to
make sure they have the necessary skill sets
to perform their jobs. We need to help equip
members better so they can excel.
The membership is not only growing, but
also its demographics are changing. We have
far more women and younger members join-
ing us. How do we meet their needs? We have
to listen to women’s voices and younger voices.
We must hold forums where they can offer
their views and have more detailed discus-
sions about their expectations and aspirations.
It is not easy for an organization with
such a diverse membership to remain re-
sponsive and inclusive, but we must achieve
this. We have accountants in practice, ac-
countants in business, accountants in gov-
ernment. We represent every business sector
in Hong Kong.
While it is important to make our mem-
bers heard and feel involved, it is equally vi-
tal to make sure our communications’ reach
extends to every stakeholder. We need to let
the public know more about what we do, how
we support the city and the country and how
we contribute to business and the economy.
People generally don’t understand what
accountants do. They might know we un-
dertake audits and advise on tax, and per-
haps some people know we are involved in
initial public offerings. But we do a lot they
don’t know about. We need to enhance our
public communications and better relate to
the public so they can understand and ap-
preciate our role.
The Institute needs to enhance its rela-
tionship with members in small- and medi-
um-sized practices and help create more op-
portunities for SMPs both in Hong Kong and
in the Mainland through cooperation with
the Ministry of Finance and Chinese Institute
of CPAs. Our SMP leadership panel should
engage in dialogue with its peers in inter-
national accounting bodies to cooperate on
strategies to further develop our SMPs.
Many of our members are either working
in China or travelling between Hong Kong
and the Mainland. Some even commute
daily. We need to be able to engage with
these members to improve our capabilities
on the Mainland and forge better links with
Mainland businesses and institutions.
We need to also deepen relationships with
both the Hong Kong and the Central govern-
ments and further our communications with
stock exchanges both here and on the Main-
land, the Securities and Futures Commission
and other regulatory authorities in Hong
Kong, China and internationally.
This is particularly important, given that
the Institute’s own regulatory role is about
to change with the transfer of some respon-
sibilities to the Financial Reporting Coun-
cil. This is a process that we must manage
smoothly with an efficient mechanism.
Finally, Hong Kong must maintain its
“It is not easy for an
organization with such
a diverse membership
to remain responsive
and inclusive, but we
must achieve this.”
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