Virtual Finance Function Senior Manager
WHO I HELP
Medium to Large Companies.
HOW I HELP
International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) Technical Accounting.
Across all sectors.
“I LIKE TACKLING TRICKY PROBLEMS.”
Ian Chapman is a Senior Manager within our Virtual Finance team. He specialises in IFRS technical accounting. So provides a slightly more bespoke service than the usual processing or accounting functions handled by the team.
Based in Edinburgh, Ian works with clients who are dealing with special situations. Maybe they’ve acquired an entity that currently reports under US GAAP, but now needs to convert to IFRS. Or perhaps they have a lot of mergers or acquisitions going on. It’s a fledgling service, but Ian is excited about growing this offering so that even more AAB clients can benefit from his experience and knowledge.
BUILDING A PICTURE
“It always helps if I can get a full and frank briefing from my client. If they can spell out exactly how their business works, what they’re doing and what they hope to do. That’s when the whole process works best. In a job like mine, openness and transparency is everything. When I have that, I can take all the facts away, apply them to accounting standards. Then I can come back to my client and say, this is what you have to do, and these are the potential pitfalls that you need to be aware of.”
QUICK AND AGILE
“When clients work with me, I think they expect technical expertise, mixed with a personable approach. It’s no good me just bamboozling them with tech speak all the time, which is easy to do. They need someone they can rely on to make everything simple and guide them to the correct answer. They’re looking for that second pair of eyes – a bit of comfort over what is being done.
And the great thing about AAB is that we’re incredibly agile. In some firms, you can get bogged down in bureaucracy. You might come up with an answer, but you have to go through layers of reviews before you can even give that to your client. Here I can do the research and then deliver my clients what they need in next to no time. And that’s so refreshing.”
“I’m quite a techy person. I love nothing better than being given a unique issue and having to research exactly how the accounting standards apply to that. And then helping my client understand how it all works. Often, it’s about solving really tricky problems and finding innovative ways to do that. A lot of people think of accounting as purely black and white. That there’s a right and wrong answer to everything. But quite often that’s not the case. There are shades of grey in there as well – and if you work with those, you might be able to find a better solution.”
MEETING THE CHALLENGE
“I guess the greatest challenge I face is when clients ask me about something that I’ve just never dealt with before in the accounting world. But that’s kind of my main skill set. I’m good at taking everything back to the key facts and then applying them to the accounting standards to get the correct answer. From that, I can offer my client a range of options and help them understand what impact that will have on their business. Of course, it’s also a challenge keeping up with the guidance that circulates around accounting standards as that’s changing all the time. But it keeps me on my toes.”