It’s official – James is a Responsible Individual …

HWB’s recently appointed associate director, James Flood, has been granted Responsible Individual status by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).

Having joined the Hampshire-based accountancy firm in 2007 following his studies at Barton Peveril College in Eastleigh, Flood went through the company’s training programme and gained his chartered qualification in 2013.

He has been heavily involved in the firm’s audit service offering throughout his time with HWB, working on and managing assignments with owner-managed SME businesses across many different industries, as well as Academy Schools.

His latest accolade underlines his growing experience within audit and Flood now adds to the six-strong team of Responsible Individuals (RI’s) at the firm.

“I’ve always enjoyed working on audits, and really getting to know my clients and their businesses, so gaining my RI status was naturally the next step for me following my recent promotion,” said Flood. “My RI licence means I can now sign-off audit reports for our owner-managed clients which is a responsibility I am relishing,”

To become a Responsible Individual you must provide evidence of a significant amount of audit experience, and also undertake specific continual training to ensure that you are maintaining your knowledge and are up to date with any changes in the sector.

Congratulating Flood on his achievement, managing director Geoff Rhodes said: “James is a product of our in-house student training programme and a great example of what can be achieved through hard work and dedication. He works closely with a number of our owner-managed business clients and is prominent in the audit of many of our Academy Schools.”

There has been increased political and public scrutiny of the audit profession over recent years.

As discussions about the future of audit continue to evolve, HWB sees it as a watershed moment and recognises the need for change to re-establish trust in the quality of the audit. The company has invested in an unusually large number of RI’s for a firm of its size, ensuring it is able to provide a top-quality service.

Looking to the future Flood added: “Audit is one of the areas that is set to become more automated over the coming years, but there will always be a need for a personal touch, especially for SME companies, as well as the need for professional scepticism, which will be difficult for technology to recreate”.

Chartered accountants HWB, headquartered at Chandler’s Ford, near Southampton, provides business and tax advice.