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Charity Times - 18/06/2019

DIGITAL Rate of digital change in charities is stalling The Charity Digital Skills Report 2019 suggests some charities are stalling or even going backwards in their integration of digital. More than half (52%) of charities who responded to the annual survey have no digital strategy, an increase from 2017 and 2018, when the figures were 50 per cent and 45 per cent respectively. Mims Davies, minister for sport and civil society and Margot James, minister for digital and the creative industries, said: “For the social sector to take full advantage of the opportunities that digital presents, it needs to be equipped with the right digital skills . . . There is no doubt that many charities are struggling to use digital tools strategically, which is impacting the growth of the sector." Zoe Amar, founder and director of Zoe Amar Digital, which carries out the annual survey, said: “It is reassuring that charities seem to be aware of the issues and where the gaps are... however, the slow pace of change and the decline of progress overall needs urgent attention.” Charity Digital News Third Force News Civil Society GOVERNANCE NCVO accuses Charity Commission NCVO is unhappy with the Charity Commission after the regulator’s chair wrote an opinion piece in The Times accusing charities of not meeting public expectations. Baroness Stowell wrote in the wake of the publication of the Commission’s inquiry report into Oxfam last week: "Over recent years, we’ve seen charities losing sight of what they stand for in pursuit of organisational advantage." In a letter to Charity Commission chief executive Helen Stephenson, NCVO chief executive Sir Stuart Etherington responded: "While claiming that it wants charity to thrive and inspire trust, [the Commission] is only talking about how ‘charity’ has failed," adding "there is a real risk that [these broad generalisations] will . . . . entrench public misconceptions and erode the public’s trust.” Separately, NCVO has announced its new chief executive. Karl Wilding will take over from Sir Stuart Etherington in the autumn. Sir Stuart announced his retirement earlier this year after 25 years with the umbrella body. Third Force News Civil Society FUNDRAISING Nearly a third of people have never donated to charity New YouGov research suggests that nearly three in 10 people in Britain (29%) have never donated money to charity. The most cited reason (32 per cent) for not donating was distrust of charity management, according to YouGov’s What motivates charitable giving report. Twenty-nine per cent said they had never donated because they couldn't afford to, and 28 per cent said they donated in other ways – for example by volunteering or giving goods to charity shops. Briony Gunston, director of not for profit research at YouGov said: “There is a significant portion of Brits who have never donated to charity . . . However, what is encouraging is that the most commonly cited reason for not donating, worrying that administrative costs consume too large a portion of funds, could be less of a barrier with more reassurance and education from charities.” Civil Society Scots law firms in Will Aid campaign McClure Solicitors, which has branches in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverclyde, Rollos Law in Fife, and Miller Hendry in Dundee, Perth and Crieff, were among the top five UK fundraisers in the 2018 Will Aid campaign. The three firms raised a total of £47,634 between them for the scheme. McClure Solicitors is also the top donating firm in the UK for 2018, raising £24,885 last year. Andrew Roberston, managing director, said: “We are absolutely delighted with our efforts, and thrilled that we are not the only Scottish firm to be making a difference.” Bob Inch from Rollos Law added: “There has been a surge of interest in will writing in Scotland since the laws of succession were finally brought up to date in 2016 for the first time in 50 years.” Meanwhile, Caroline Fraser from Miller Hendry commented: “We are thrilled to have helped so many people in Scotland to prepare a will and to have helped the nine Will Aid charities in the process.” Journal Online WORKFORCE Report reveals impact of bullying A new report from the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations (ACEVO) and Centre for Mental Health details the impact of bullying in the charity workplace and makes recommendations to create safer systems, processes and cultures in the sector. More than half (58%) of respondents to the In Plain Sight study formally reported incidents of bullying but only 3% said that their complaint was dealt with satisfactorily. Vicky Browning, chief executive of ACEVO, said: “We believe that as charities we should be taking a lead on how we tackle bullying in order to create inclusive and supportive workplace cultures . . . [The responses to the study] have enabled us to begin the process of tackling an issue that is rarely talked about publicly in the charity sector. This research is an important first step and I am committed to making the recommendations in the report a reality." Third Force News RISK Charity is 'deeply sorry' for data breach A charity supporting transgender children and young people has apologised after thousands of emails were made public online. Mermaids UK said it was "deeply sorry" for what it called a "historical data breach" after it was reported by the Sunday Times. The newspaper claimed the correspondence included "intimate details", names and addresses, but the charity denies the allegations. It said there was "no evidence" the information had been retrieved by anyone other than the Sunday Times, or those contacted by the newspaper's journalist. Mermaids UK said the Information Commissioner's Office had been notified, and those affected had been contacted. The Charity Commission had also been notified, the charity said, and an independent investigation would be launched. BBC News Third Force News Civil Society NSPCC apologises for dropping first LGBTQ+ campaigner The NSPCC has said it cut ties with transgender activist Munroe Bergdorf because of statements she made on social media which breached the charity's safeguarding rules. Ms Bergdorf had been appointed by the NSPCC as Childline's "first LGBT+ campaigner" - but was dropped only days after the announcement. Ms Bergdorf accused the NSPCC of giving in to pressure from transphobes but the charity said its decision was unrelated to her being transgender. The NSPCC nevertheless apologised for the way it severed the relationship with Ms Bergdorf, saying it "shouldn't have cut ties in the way we did". Charity Update Civil Society BBC News AWARDS Scottish Charity Awards 2019 winners Edinburgh-based Drake Music Scotland, which helps over 1,000 disabled children and adults to play music, received the Charity of the Year Award at The Scottish Charity Awards on June 14th. The People’s Choice Award was won by Scotland's Charity Air Ambulance (SCAA) and Toni Giugliano of the Mental Health Foundation was named Leading Light for his work on suicide prevention. Laura Reid of Support in Mind Scotland won the Charity Champion Award. Move On was named Pioneering Project for its Family Food Service, and the Celebrating Communities award went to Give a Dog a Bone . . . and an animal a home. Marie Curie and MND Scotland received the Cracking Campaign Award for work on the Social Security in Scotland campaign. Third Force News OPERATIONAL ‘Looming crisis’ as care charities hand back contracts The Coalition of Care and Support Providers in Scotland has warned of a looming crisis, with a fifth of its member charities having handed back at least one contract to public authorities such as councils and health board partnerships in 2017, increasing to a third last year. The body commissioned a report from Strathclyde University to look into the rise. The report found that the failure to properly fund social care was driving charities to the brink, while problems also exist in staff recruitment and retention. Charities have criticised commissioners for being out of touch with service provision, lacking realistic expectations of what can be provided within a given budget, and the report warns that commissioning may conflict with the Scottish Government’s Fair Work policy. The Herald AUDIT Charity audit fees up £10m in four years The UK’s largest charities paid audit fees of £72.3m in 2017-18, a rise of £10.2m in just four years, according to a report produced by Charity Financials. The Charity Audit Spotlight 2019 report showed that 33% of the UK’s top 5,000 charity organisations were hit by an increase in fees while 44% saw no change in fees and 19% saw a decrease. The latest data also revealed that 43% of charities have not changed auditor within the last decade. haysmacintyre secured the highest number of new clients during the 2017-18 financial year (25) while Crowe UK netted the highest gain in fee income, worth £534k. Public Finance Accountancy Daily CAMPAIGNS Charity warns of social media addiction A report by Barnardo's warns that children aged five and under are at risk of developing an addiction to social media. The charity found that 60% of professionals who have experience of dealing with vulnerable children reported concerns about under-fives using social networks, with not only inappropriate content deemed a risk but the children’s communication skills jeopardised. Meanwhile, the impact on the mental health of under-18s of platforms such as Snapchat, Instagram and Twitter is “disturbing”, according to the report. It states: “Worries regarding addiction and the substitution of time spent with family for the use of social media were issues that were felt to cause problems related to mental health and emotional wellbeing in this age group”. Some 78% of 11 to 15-year-olds were found to have been exposed to inappropriate or harmful content online. The Independent Evening Standard The Guardian ‘Hidden Harms’ aims to find victims of modern slavery A new campaign has launched in London to find victims of “hidden crimes” such as modern slavery. The Hidden Harms Project, which is being run in seven languages by charity Crimestoppers, aims to increase reporting of potential offences. All information received will be directly passed to the Metropolitan Police Service, with the Modern Slavery Human Trafficking Unit at the National Crime Agency also involved. The campaign will be funded by a £90,000 donation from the City of London Corporation’s City Bridge Trust and the Mayor’s Office for Policing and Crime. Evening Standard More counselling needed for care experienced kids Who Cares Scotland has warned that problems accessing mental health support are putting care experienced children and young people in danger. The charity delivered a letter to Nicola Sturgeon on Friday highlighting the need for better access to counselling and mental health support, with an accompanying report, We don’t have to wait, calling for counselling services to be provided to all care experienced young people as a default, and for the deaths of young people in care to be recorded, with lessons learned from inquiries to be made public. The National Schools failing to support bereaved children Bereaved children are being let down by schools, a charity has warned, because there is no national bereavement policy for schools despite every classroom in the UK containing on average at least one child who has lost a parent or sibling. A study conducted for the charity by researchers at Cambridge University's Faculty of Education on behalf of Winston’s Wish found a "random approach" among schools, with students reporting receiving "only a little or no help at all" following bereavement. Although schools recognise bereavement as a high priority, teachers say they feel ill-equipped to offer support to bereaved children. The Guardian Back to Charity Times archive >>​​

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The Benefits of Working in a Finance Charity Role

Working in a finance role in the charity sector offers you the opportunity to use your skills in finance and accountancy to support a cause you are passionate about. Many finance professionals who work in the charity sector note that job satisfaction, a good work-life balance and the chance to give back are just some of the benefits of working for a Not-For-Profit organisation. The third sector offers a huge range of opportunities, from varied roles to different working environments, many of which are just as exciting and fast-paced as the commercial sector. Considering a career change? Our specialist charity finance recruiters have provided insights as to why you should consider moving into a finance role in the charity sector. Joining the finance department of a charity or Not-For-Profit organisation puts you right at the heart of the organisation. Working in finance in this sector offers variation - you could find yourself working to raise the profile of fundraising projects one week and ensuring donations are accurately recorded the next. It is important for charities to have a strong financial infrastructure as well as committed and motivated employees to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the organisation, all the while contributing towards its cause. Whether you are managing gift aid, maintaining financial records or developing profit projections, the way in which an organisation’s finances are run allows for goals to be reached and for invaluable work to continue successfully. Due to the importance of an effective finance department within charities, there is a constant demand for finance professionals who have a genuine interest in the sector - or even better, a genuine connection to a charity’s cause. Moving from a finance role within a large corporate company to work for a smaller charity is incredibly beneficial, as you can use your commercial background and awareness to add value to a non-profit organisation. While the emphasis in a purely commercial organisation is on profitability, the focus across many NFP organisations is now on surplus and return on investment. There are many ways in which the knowledge that comes with having a commercial background can be utilised in the charitable sector. NFP organisations often have trading companies underneath them selling a product and using the money from sales to invest back into the organisation’s valuable work. For example, the income of the British Council is projected to being in the region of 2 billion by 2020, the majority of which is going to come from commercial activities. This is similar for a charity like Marie Curie, where profits from sales and retail operations are invested back into funding care and support. While these are examples of larger organisations, smaller charities also often have a commercial function to maximise the impact of donations and funding towards the core goals of the charity. This is why charities and Not-For-Profit organisations need finance professionals who have a commercial background, as having commercial awareness means that you appreciate profit and loss, ROI, scenario planning and dealing with commercial products and sales. Salaries and benefits will depend on the size and location of the organisation, and while larger charities may have the means to offer larger salaries, smaller charities will have smaller finance departments which means more responsibility and the chance to make a big impact. Laura de Poitiers, Finance Manager at Belu Water Ltd surmises, ‘the best part of my job is seeing the work I do have a real impact on the profits we can make, the carbon savings we can deliver and the transformations these actions can effect on the world and its inhabitants.’ The main reason many people choose to work in the charity sector is wanting to give back and make a difference, as opposed to benefitting shareholders. As cited by the ICAEW, whether you want to support your local community, the natural environment or causes that affect people all over the world, you can work for an organisation and a cause that means something to you. The charity sector can be overlooked by finance professionals searching for roles, but no longer is the charity sector seen as a dusty old sector or the ‘poor cousin’. In reality, organisations within the third sector are often exciting, commercial and fast-paced and can offer a rewarding career, and you often see people who have this ‘world first mentality’ move from corporate organisations into small charities and Not-For-Profit organisations. Working in a finance charity role, you get the best of both worlds! It is an opportunity to utilise your commercial experience as well as making a real difference in society. For more information on this article, or to talk to Matt about your next finance charity role in London or Nationwide, contact him on 020 7269 6323 or matt.davidson@pro-finance.co.uk.

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Finance Practice vs. Industry: The Big Debate

Once you become a newly qualified accountant, you will inevitably come up against the decision of whether to build a career in practice or to move into an industry role. Both have their pros and cons, and your decision will ultimately come down to what type of person you are and what is important to you in your career. Making this decision can often feel daunting, but our specialist finance recruiters have put together key advice to help you make an informed decision! Type of Work Many newly qualified accountants are attracted to industry roles because the companies themselves often seem more interesting, or just because they’re not audit roles! But in reality, although moving from practice to industry gives you the opportunity to use your skills in a very different environment, roles in industry can lack variation and excitement. You will find yourself working on the same or similar things on a day-to-day basis and you will most likely lose the client-facing aspect of a role in practice. If you are looking to be involved in the business development side of the firm you work for, you are best to seek a role within practice as opposed to industry where business development focused roles tend to be limited. As well as this, with a finance practice role, you will find you have a varied workload and responsibilities with certain busy periods throughout the year. Depending on your firm and department, your work could be audit, tax-focused, or accounts-focused to name but a few, and you will have autonomy in your work. Every week will see you working with different clients across different types of work that can vary in size and topic. Salary & Benefits Newly qualified accountants are often drawn into industry with an attractive pay rise compared to starting salaries within practice. Salaries within industry for a new-qualified accountant are typically around the £45,000 mark, occasionally going up to around £55,000 in certain sectors like Financial Services. However, the initial pay gap between industry and practice has reduced considerably and the salary for a newly-qualified candidate within practice can actually be higher than in industry, with many firms now matching the money offered in order to retain the best talent. Not only this, if you were to stay in practice and become a future Director or Partner, the pay would more than equal itself out and you would be looking at earning more further down the line. When it comes to benefits, packages in industry are very variable depending on the sector and business, however, more often than not they do include a bonus and a wide variety of benefits. Benefits within practice are typically better for two reasons - they are better-established companies with defined risk & reward teams, and you will also receive benefits in line with longevity of service, compared to industry where it would be a new role. Working Hours Industry roles tend to be busy when it comes to month-end but, again, that is very dependent on the size of the business. Practice roles will have seasonally busy periods throughout the year, but it’s also important to note that accountancy firms are very bottom-heavy meaning there will always be juniors carrying out work that is perhaps more menial, which is often not the case within industry. Typically, working in an industry role offers the opportunity to have a better work-life balance, with regular working hours and no late nights in the office! However, improving work-life balance is something that a lot of firms are increasingly working towards for their employees. The Big 4, for example, are not known for having the best work-life balance but this is improving on a daily basis with more firms understanding the value a healthy work-life balance adds to employee happiness. Progression Prospects Progression will depend entirely on the organisation and its structure. It can be possible to progress quickly within industry depending on your personal performance, as these companies do not have a rigid structure. However, progression within these companies is often very competitive! Teams tend to be smaller and while this is good in terms of extra responsibility, these teams typically do not offer a set career path and it is more difficult to stand out. On the other hand, a finance role in practice tends to offer a clear career progression path. This is particularly true when you get towards higher levels and there are targets to hit to move up in the company. The path for progression is very clear and structured into people’s careers, all the way up to Partner with equity in the firm, and CPD training and development is often a primary focus. Ease of Finding a New Opportunity If you are looking to move from practice into industry you will find yourself in a highly competitive market, particularly if you have trained in a smaller practice as you will be competing against Big 4 ACA qualified candidates, as well as industry-trained CIMA/ACCA candidates who will have more relevant experience in industry-specific roles. Therefore, it is often worth moving into a Big 4 or Top 10 firm to gain the experience and skills needed to open up a range of options for your next career step - whether this be a move into an industry role, a role at a smaller practice or SME, or remaining and progressing within a larger firm. Once you have chosen a route in industry it can be difficult to move sector or change your role type. For example, if your first move from practice to industry is within a Financial Accountant role, you will rarely be able to move within the same company to a Management Accountant role. It can also be challenging to move back into practice if you change your mind later down the line, particularly after a period of time longer than 12-18 months, as advances in the profession and working towards the new reporting standards would require a significant catch-up. However, within practice there is room for movement between different aspects of the business, offering variation and the chance to decide what type of role is best for you. Ultimately, your decision will come down to what type of work suits you and what you want from your career as a finance professional. If you are looking for a role within a company whose brand and household name excites you, then a role in industry may suit you. However, if you are looking for a client-facing role that offers autonomy and variation in your day-to-day responsibilities with a clearly defined career path, you should pursue a finance role in practice. For more information on this article, or for advice on your next career move into a finance role in practice, contact Aaron on 020 7269 6340 or aaron.scott@pro-finance.co.uk.

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5 Key Points: Pushing for Partner

By now, you’re probably at Director-grade, and have been for some time. You’ve been focused on your business and personal case and working towards the targets therein for a while. It’s been a career ambition to make Partner in your area of expertise; this could be the first time you’re going for it, or you may have been through the process before. Either way, there are five areas of your business which you need to focus on to make that all important step up. 1) Plan. It goes without saying, but it’s so often seen. One of the most important factors to becoming a Partner is knowing when you want to make it and how you’re going to get there. Be realistic; Partner is a prestigious title – one that most professionals take years to achieve. It is among the highest recognition of performance. Set yourself an achievable route. 2) Don't only play to your strengths. Part of planning is knowing your skill set; the areas which you’re good at and those which need work. Weaknesses are opportunities. Most people shy away from weaknesses; it’s less scary to remain in your comfort zone. But growth takes place when you’re uncomfortable – don’t be afraid of discomfort. Paying attention to the unfamiliar areas of your overall business case are the ones which will strengthen your Partner-case and increase the likelihood of success. Of course, continue to work on the areas you’re good at. “There’s always room for improvement”. 3) Network. But don’t only network. You should know that a large part of becoming a Partner is your “business case” - basically, your profitability. In order to build revenues, it’s a good idea to have a good pool of clients to promote your expertise to. A network which is willing to interact with you. However, while a broad network is important, it’s not the only area you should focus on. Far too many aspiring Partners place too much emphasis on networking rather than building long-standing, weather-bearing relationships. Genuine relationships allow the practice to cross-sell, which in turn promotes alternate services of the practice and improves your overall business case. 4) Specialise. It is essential that you’re able to identify market trends and be forward thinking about economic and technological cycles. Sectors with heavy or changing regulation require professionals with an up-to-date knowledge of those changes and how best to extract value for the practice. For example, the recent changes in VAT legislation surrounding MTD has seen some firms leapfrog others, just by being prepared and having innovative Partners. 5) Know what is out there. Being a Partner shouldn’t be a short-term commitment. The effort you’ll go through, the late nights and the potential disappointment all needs to be worth it. It is always advisable to explore Partner opportunities within other practices, for two reasons: a) It gives you something to compare to. You’ll get a taste for the Partnership structure and vision of your competition, which may be different to what you’d imagine b) It provides a back-up plan. Partner-track is a “slippery slope”. Running a Partner process side-by-side saves time but also provides an alternative if you’re let down by your preferred choice. Becoming a Partner is a long, testing and multi-faceted process, which is ultimately offered to those individuals who can demonstrate technical skills to win and advise on new deals and truly represent the values of the firm. If you are a Director, Executive Director or Associate Partner committed to becoming a Partner in accounting practice, contact Chris on 020 7269 6313 or chris.davey@pro-tax.co.uk for a discreet discussion on the market.

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Charity Times - 11/06/2019

REGULATION Oxfam findings released by Charity Commission The Charity Commission has published a critical report on Oxfam GB, with aspects of the charity’s past record on safeguarding allegedly amounting to mismanagement. The charity was found to have repeatedly fallen below expected standards, tolerated poor behaviour, and failed to meet safeguarding goals. The organisation’s overall approach to safeguarding both in the past and currently was deemed unsatisfactory. Helen Stephenson, Chief Executive of the Charity Commission, commented: “The charity’s leadership may have been well-intentioned. But our report demonstrates that good intentions have limited value when they are not matched with resources, robust systems and processes that are implemented on the ground, and more importantly, an organisational culture that prioritises keeping people safe.” Sky News Fundraising Third Sector Gov.uk Morgan review: Charity accounting needs radical overhaul Professor Gareth Morgan, chair of the Charity SORP review panel, has said that charity reporting and accounting needs to be overhauled to provide more transparency and accountability on financials and to simplify the reporting process for the smallest charities. The nine-month investigation was instigated following criticism of the members of the Charity SORP committee, who are responsible for writing the accounting rules for the charity sector. One of the main criticisms was the committee's slowness to reflect wider changes to FRS 102 accounting rules, as well as failing to strengthen the weak controls over anti-money laundering and cross-border financial oversight of charities. The governance review was undertaken by an oversight panel comprising a representative from each of the four charity regulators and an observer representative nominated by the Financial Reporting Council. Accountancy Daily Gov.uk OSCR Third Sector Foreign Affairs Labour’s civil society strategy broadly welcomed The charity sector has broadly welcomed Labour’s newly-published 14-page civil society strategy, entitled From "Paternalism to Participation," which includes pledges to increase grant funding for small charities and measures to increase diversity among charity leaders. Roberta Fusco, director of policy and engagement at the Charity Finance Group, championed the focus on improving access to digital services in the sector and plans to review the Gift Aid Small Donations Scheme. Jay Kennedy, director of policy and research at the Directory of Social Change, praised the pledge to involve charities more in determining how the government’s Shared Prosperity Fund will be allocated to replace current EU funding, along with plans to use funding from dormant financial assets to support community organisations and projects, while Sir John Low, chief executive of the Charities Aid Foundation, cautioned: “This strategy has an ambitious scope but it could go further and details are needed to flesh out what the party would do in practice.” Civil Society Audit committees and financial reporting Don Bawtree of BDO highlights that the Financial Reporting Council and the ICAEW have issued a guide on issues audit committees might need to consider in relation to financial reporting. He says the guidance, which he describes as “straightforward and practical”, can be applied to charity trustees. Third Sector Regulator warns against taxing private schools In a submission to Holyrood’s local government committee, the Office of the Scottish Charity Regulator has advised against forcing private schools to pay business rates as it risks forcing them to cease operating as a charitable institutions, which would have a detrimental impact on communities due to lost access to valuable shared facilities and state pupils missing out on classes. The Scottish Government is considering implementing the recommendations of the Barclay review into business rates, allowing councils to tax independent schools in future. The Times Scotland Charity Commission probes Jarrow's St Clare's Hospice St Clare's Hospice’ collapse into insolvency is being reviewed by the Charity Commission, which is "assessing information, including a serious incident report submitted by the charity”. This follows South Tyneside Council's overview and scrutiny committee chairman Rob Dix agreeing last month to write to the Commission to request an assessment of the events leading up to the collapse of the hospice in Jarrow, South Tyneside. BBC News Shields Gazette Viva Palestina report says charity ‘may have delivered no aid’ A damning new report from the Charity Commission has found that humanitarian charity Viva Palestina, fronted by former MP George Galloway may not have delivered any aid to Palestine. A decade of probes into the organisation has found that while “significant cash donations were received by the charity via direct bank transfer”, there was “no evidence that these donated funds had been spent on their intended purpose”. The charity was also found to have failed to maintain records of donated assets. The Independent Civil Society The Guardian FUNDRAISING Few BAME fundraisers, report says Just 9% of fundraisers belong to a Black, Asian, minority ethnic (BAME) background, according to a new report released by the Institute of Fundraising, which also shows that only 3% have a disability. The “Who’s Not in the Room” research aimed to give a snapshot of diversity in fundraising and was based on survey data provided by hundreds of respondents. London-based charities had 11% of fundraisers from an ethnic minority background, compared to a 40.2% total BAME population, while the West Midlands and the North West have 13% and 12% BAME fundraisers respectively. Fundraising Third Sector Scots’ generosity to charity dips Scotland's generosity to charity has dipped, according to the Charities Aid Foundation’s (CAF) annual Scotland Giving report, prompting calls for charities to increase public engagement. The amount donated by Scottish people to charity in 2018 fell by nearly 30% (£349m) to £851m last year, down from a high of £1.2bn in 2017. Though Scots are still 12 percentage points higher than the UK average of 64% when it comes to donating to charity, Susan Pinkney, the CAF's head of research, underlined scope for charities to use the figures as a catalyst for greater engagement, adding: "This can also act as an opportunity to reassure them that their favourite charities are worth their time, effort and hard-earned money." Herald Scotland Fundraising platform adds WhatsApp functionality Not-for-profit digital matching platform The Good Exchange has integrated online chat network WhatsApp into its services. The online fundraising platform says the added functionality will enable people to easier share fundraising projects to drive awareness and increase visibility. Charity Digital News Young Fundraiser of the Year announced by IoF Emma Powell has won this year’s Institute of Fundraising Young Fundraiser of the Year Award. She has fundraised for cancer charities since her twin sister died of the illness aged 11, raising more than £130,000 for The Chartwell Children’s Cancer Trust, Rays of Sunshine, Demelza Hospice and CLIC Sargent. Fundraising Fundraisers register for free virtual conference The Resource Alliance community of fundraisers and changemakers is about to welcome thousands of people who have signed up to participate in the Fundraising Online 2019 free online conference. This year’s event begins on June 12, with keynote speakers including Ann Mei Chang, author of Lean Impact: How to Innovate for Radically Greater Social Good. Fundraising DIGITAL Report urges charities to embrace digital Charities must embrace digital fundraising to remain relevant, according to the new "Future Charities" report by Kivo, Manifesto Digital and Massive consultancies, which focuses on six factors which are needed to address the technological, social, demographic and economic challenges facing the industry - redefining purpose, building confidence, securing the right people, measuring meaningfully, collaborating actively, and looking beyond the sector. While digital challenges are clear, many respondents to the survey spoke of the positive opportunities which new technologies present, with 75% indicating that they believed that changes in technology could affect their workplace and organisation in a positive way. Charity Digital News Fundraising Rafful raises £150k Manchester start-up Rafful, which enable organisations to raise money for charities by partnering with influential people and leveraging their social media followings to spread the word, has raised £150,000 of equity investment to build a dedicated platform. Charities including MIND, Cancer Research UK, The British Red Cross and Oxfam have already signed up to use the portal. Business Cloud Tyneside mobile donations startup raises £300k Newcastle-based tech startup Donr, a platform to allow people to donate to charities using their mobile phones, has secured a £300,000 equity investment from the Northstar Ventures-managed North East Innovation Fund. Donr is already used by over 800 charities, including national organisations like The Big Issue Foundation and The Trussell Trust, as well as local, North East charities such as Sage Gateshead and Tyneside Cinema. Insider Media GOVERNANCE Government releases public sector AI guidance The UK Government has published comprehensive new guidance on the use of artificial intelligence (AI) in the public sector. The report, led by Office for Artificial Intelligence (OAI) and the Government Digital Service (GDS), with The Alan Turing Institute’s public policy programme contributing, asserts that uses for AI in the public sector must be balanced with ethical, fairness and safety considerations. Charity Digital News Ex-Downing Street adviser’s trust to give up its schools Floreat Education Academies Trust, which was set up by a former government minister, has announced that both its schools will join GLF Schools. The trust was founded by James O'Shaughnessy, a former 10 Downing Street aide to David Cameron who later became a health minister in the House of Lords. Floreat had previously looked at merging with another trust in 2016, because of the financial challenges of running a small academy trust of primary schools. A spokesperson said Floreat’s parent charity would not be wound up, and would instead “use its remaining resources to support the schools as they grow to full capacity”. TES LEGAL Charity questions spy kid policy The Home Office faces a legal challenge from Just for Kids Law, with the charity saying police are putting children at risk by using them as spies to investigate gangs and dangerous criminals. The charity will tell the High Court that the activity lacks safeguards and contravenes human rights laws. The Times High Court orders winding up of housing charity Thrift Urban Housing Limited is to be wound up after the High Court approved a petition from the Charity Commission. Judge Jones ruled: “I would have viewed this petition from a different angle had completely new trustee/directors been appointed […] This has not happened, but that approach adds to the reasons I rely upon when deciding it is just and equitable to wind up the charity”. Meanwhile, Amy Spiller, head of investigations team at the Commission, remarked: “Organisations that enjoy the privilege of charitable status should be run with probity and respect.” Civil Society INITIATIVES Secondary teachers to get mental health training Secondary teachers are to receive training on how to recognise the warning signs for depression and anxiety as part of a government-funded mental health drive. Over 1,800 schools and colleges will receive the training, as part of the latest phase of the mental health awareness training. The new phase of training will take place in 130 locations across England and will be delivered by mental health charity the Anna Freud Centre. The sessions will also address common mental health problems that teachers are likely to confront in schools. “It’s about ensuring that you have a robust mental health and wellbeing policy in place, and giving teachers skills to go back to their settings and set that up,” commented Davina Metters, head of programming in mental health in the school's team at the Anna Freud Centre. TES Fundraising staff can be protected from sexual harassment Stephanie Smith, director of income generation and marketing at Chestnut Tree House and St Barnabas House hospices in Sussex, explores how protocols to protect nurses from harassment at hospices can be applied to workers in the fundraising sector. She cites the reporting methods and safeguards nurses seek from their employer and through the Royal College of Nursing as inspiration for how fundraisers could be better protected. Civil Society Tags used to prove addicts capable parents Substance misuse charity Change Grow Live, in partnership with Blackburn with Darwen Council, has been offering free, voluntary use of alcohol-tracking ankle tags to vulnerable addicts who have had their children removed by social services due to substance misuse and chaotic lifestyles. The devices allow them to prove that they are capable of caring for their children, and key workers now say the scheme should be rolled out across the UK. The Sunday Telegraph Starbucks to trial reusable cups at Gatwick Starbucks is launching a reusable coffee cup trial at its Gatwick Airport branch, in partnership with the environmental charity Hubbub. The trial will provide customers at Starbucks with the option to borrow a free reusable cup which they can drop off at a designated point before boarding their flight. The aim is to put 2,000 reusable Starbucks cups in circulation in the south terminal in an attempt to cut waste and tackle the "throwaway" culture. Last year Starbucks became the first UK coffee chain to introduce a 5p charge on paper cups to encourage reuse. Trewin Restorick, chief executive and co-founder of Hubbub, said: "We want to find out whether people will get on board with reusing cups if we make it easy and convenient. The airport is the ideal environment to trial a reusable cup scheme as it has the potential to reduce large volumes of paper cup waste." The Guardian Royal Mail rolls out digital missing people alerts Charity Missing People has partnered with Royal Mail to deliver "missing people alerts" via postal workers' handheld digital devices. Since the initiative was launched, 120,000 postal workers in the UK have received alerts that a missing person could be in their area and Royal Mail’s Director of Public Affairs & Policy, David Gold, said: "Families waiting for news have told us how much of a comfort and encouragement it is to know that postal workers are helping in the search for their loved ones." Charity Digital News CAMPAIGNS Young carers miss out on education Half of young carers drop out of education, a new study by Barnardo's has revealed. Of the country's estimated 800,000 carers under 17, 10% say the pressure of looking after loved ones meant they had to quit secondary school. A quarter said that their role stopped them going to university while a further 15% said being a carer led to them dropping out of further or higher education. Some 67% said the role made them feel tired in lessons; 73% took time off learning, while a third missed school most weeks. Emma James from Barnardo's said: "These are forgotten children who are being isolated from their peers as they struggle with school and their own mental health." Sunday Express Nurseries in deprived areas 'face closure over funding gap' A shortfall in government funding means some nurseries in England's poorest areas are facing closure, a charity has said. A report by the Early Years Alliance (EYA) found 17% of childcare providers surveyed in the most deprived areas of the country "anticipate closure in the next twelve months". The survey of more than 350 nurseries and childminders found 43% of providers had been forced to cut back on learning resources and 19% said they had lowered the quality of food they gave to children." How much bigger does the early years funding shortfall have to grow before the government acts?", Neil Leitch, chief executive of the EYA, asked. BBC News Charity concerned by lack of parent-infant mental health teams A new report claims families where young children are at risk of developing mental health problems because their parents are struggling face a “shocking” lack of help from the NHS. The charity Parent Infant Partnership (PIP) UK found that only a handful of health service bodies across the UK had a specialist parent-infant relationship team to help children in households where there was domestic violence, substance misuse or a parent who was mentally ill. PIP has established there are just 27 specialist teams across more than 200 local NHS bodies in the UK. An in-depth study of children’s mental health published by NHS Digital last November revealed that one in 18 children of pre-school age in England had at least one mental health disorder such as anxiety or depression. The Guardian OTHER What’s in a middle name? A blue plaque marking the location of a school in which the founder of Save the Children taught has been revealed to be using the wrong name. The sign, honouring charity founder Eglantyne Jebb, was unveiled in Marlborough in 1996 by Princess Anne, but a researcher from Marlborough News spotted that the full name given in the sign – Eglantyne Mary Jebb – was incorrect, as Ms Jebb never had a middle name. A replacement plaque has now been installed, part-funded by Marlborough News. BBC News Back to Charity Times archive >>​​

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60 Seconds With: Matthew Rees, Group Head of Indirect Taxes at Schroders

Matthew Rees is the Group Head of Indirect Taxes with the FTSE100 asset manager, Schroders. A bright Oxford graduate, Matthew started his impressive career to date with PwC, where he trained for his CTA and progressed through the ranks in VAT for financial services businesses, all the way up to Head of Investment Management VAT prior to his current role. We sat with Matt to ask on key areas where someone of his standing may be able to offer career-insight, between experiences in practice and in-house, and what advice he might be able to provide – to himself and the next generation of tax professionals. How are things at Schroders? Schroders is a really pleasant place to work, and I don’t use the term ‘pleasant’ lightly. As you know, a significant portion of the shares remain owned by the Schroder family, which I think keeps a family-feel to the office – it’s a very collegiate environment. The culture totally revolves around treating staff well, and this is reflected in the tenures of those employed. Some of my colleagues have been at Schroders for 12, 15 and even 18 years, which speaks volumes. You made the transition in-house at a fairly senior level. How was the adjustment and what challenges did you face? I think the transition was both insightful and challenging. The good news is that I had progressed to a fairly senior level within PwC and had worked in a number of different teams. Through these various roles and rotations, I had developed decent soft skills, such as team management, which were largely transferrable to the in-house context. But the key transition is getting your head fully around the responsibility involved in-house, in terms of end-to-end process ownership and stakeholder management. It isn’t the easiest process but if you keep at it, the effort and hard work will definitely pay off. With these challenges in mind, what practical advice would you give to yourself if you could, when tackling these transition challenges previously? Great question. Practically, when making the first step from practice to in-house you simply must remain open-minded. You really don’t know what it will be like – closer to the lines of business and responsible for full delivery of projects – until you’re there. At the same time, it’s fundamentally important to keep hold of what you’ve learned in practice. Keeping fresh with the technical matters you’ve faced previously puts you in a good position to have ‘quick wins’ when in-house and this is where you have the opportunity to add value and build a profile. On a wider note, as I’ve developed in my role at Schroders, I’ve found it very helpful being a member of sector bodies: e.g. the EFAMA and IA VAT committees. I say this on three accounts; firstly, it’s good to give something back; secondly, it’s important to retain a network of peers with which you can share experiences, challenges and opportunities; and finally it requires you to keep your technical skill levels up – I enjoy the learning that comes, for instance, from delivering presentations on key topics to these groups. You have an impressive career to date and have progressed quickly amid this hyper-competitive climate. What do you do for downtime? I’d say the first thing that comes to mind is that the work-life balance in-house is significantly better than that you’ll find in the Big 4. And so this transition in itself allowed me to refocus my energy where it was most effective, once I’d got my head around the remit of responsibilities. I’ll never forget a mantra made by an ex-colleague at PwC – “nobody ever died from a lack of tax advice”. Your work needs to be engaging, but not all-consuming. Beyond this, sports have always been a huge passion and big outlet of mine – cricket, rugby or anything you can watch or play really. Also, my wife and I are big on travelling. I’m not a ‘by the beach’, relaxation type of character – being quite high energy means that even on holiday I’m out exploring and learning or trying to sneak out to watch a local match! What are your guilty pleasures? Love Island. Strictly Come Dancing. Made in Chelsea. A few members of the team are always first in the door, and I’ll admit during the peak TV season our early morning conversations could be a little more VAT focused. How would your team describe you? I’d like to think they’d describe me as a smart guy who doesn’t take himself too seriously but treats everyone honestly and fairly. What challenges, personally or professionally, do you think the next generation of VAT professionals face and what advice might you give? I remain amazed at the hyper-competitive nature of the world right now. I look back at the graduate interviews I used to host at PwC, and I was consistently astounded at the quality of candidates who walked through the door. The range of qualifications, grades, knowledge and abilities acquired at a very junior stage in their career was as humbling as it was impressive. It’s a bit of an arms race today in career advancement; you just need to keep at it and stay true to what you want to do. On this note, I’d equally suggest not being too narrow with aspirations – I look back to how focused I was at university on getting top grades and playing rugby and there were perhaps a lot more experiences I could have gained if I’d been a little more relaxed. We’re doing a blog series currently on interview preparation, drawing on the common shortfalls and practical advice. Where do you see candidates falling short in interviews, and what advice would you give here? As you know, we are lucky enough to have very good applicants at Schroders, which makes the interview process much easier. Beyond this, I note that 75%+ of the candidates I have seen have the skills to do the job, so when it gets to the interview stage, it really comes down to displaying a personality and seeing where you best fit in. There is obviously some basic homework that everyone should undertake in preparation for interview – Google is your friend – but the key message I would have it to be yourself and try to make a personal connection with the interviewer. After all, you are going to be spending a lot of your life with your colleagues! For more information about this article, or to speak to Jay about your recruiting needs or In-House Tax opportunities in London or Nationwide, contact him on 02072696343 or jay.sky@pro-tax.co.uk.

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Charity Times - 04/06/2019

GOVERNANCE New hotline for whistleblowers The Charity Commission has launched a hotline for whistleblowers to report concerns to the regulator. Helen Stephenson, the regulator's chief executive, said: “We want to make it easier for charity workers and volunteers to draw serious concerns about their charity to our attention, particularly where the charity’s trustees and senior management team aren’t addressing them.” The hotline project is operated independently by the whistleblowing charity Protect. The number is a free and confidential advice line, available on: 0800 055 7214. Meanwhile, the regulator's ‘Report serious wrongdoing at a charity as a worker or volunteer’ guidance informs people about what sort of wrongdoing can be reported, and how this can be done. UKFundraising Civil Society Governance performance review disappoints Charities scored an average of 52% in a new measure of charity compliance with the Governance Code, according to audit firm RSM. A total of 85 charities with incomes over £5m were scored out of 100 according to evidence of adoption of and compliance with the Code. Nick Sladden, RSM’s head of charities and the author of the report, observed: “Demonstrating effective governance is . . . absolutely key to ensuring that the sector can continue to rely on public generosity, interest and support. However, our research shows that while there are examples of best practice, average scores are disappointing and some charities have a lot of room for improvement." UKFundraising Cybersecurity toolkit for charity boards The National Cyber Security Centre (NCSC) has launched its new Board Toolkit – a manual for charities to develop their cybersecurity strategies and create the right dialogue with their trustee boards. Ciaran Martin, NCSC chief executive, said: “The Board Toolkit encourages essential discussions between trustee boards and technical experts within the UK’s larger charities to help charities ensure they are putting in places the measures needed to help prevent [malicious cyber] incidents . . . The NCSC has also produced a guide for smaller charities to provide them with practical steps to take to protect themselves from the most common cyber-crimes.” Almost two-thirds (65%) of high-income charities recorded a cybersecurity incident last year. Charity Digital News COMMUNICATION Sector needs a ‘cultural upheaval' Baroness Tina Stowell, chair of the Charity Commission, has said the sector typically doesn't reach its potential and organisations must rethink how they deliver their objectives. Speaking at the leadership forum Charity2020 last week, Baroness Stowell also warned the sector about the risks of complacency. She said: “I am convinced that, if they are to continue to thrive, and retain their place at the heart of our society, charities will need to demonstrate that they are more than organisations that have good aims,” adding “To achieve this future requires nothing short of cultural upheaval in the sector, and it’s requiring us as regulator to do our work in new and very different, difficult ways.” Civil Society FUNDRAISING Bottle deposit scheme could raise over £1bn The Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) says more than £1bn could be raised for charities if a deposit-return scheme for cans and bottles was introduced in the UK. The countryside charity is urging the government to introduce such a deposit-return scheme following survey findings which suggest that 20% of people would donate 20p deposits they’d paid on drinks cans and bottles all the time, and 19% would do so most of the time. Samantha Harding, litter programme director at CPRE, said: “Not only would the introduction of a UK-wide deposit return system put a stop to most of the environmental damage caused by drinks containers and boost recycling rates in excess of 90%, it could also provide much-needed funding for good causes across the country." Civil Society INVESTMENT Agency to promote impact investing is launched The Impact Investing Institute is a new body which seeks to promote impact investing in the UK. The institute, which is supported by Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, the Department for International Development and the City of London Corporation, and private firms and foundations, is an amalgamation of the UK National Advisory Board on Impact Investing (UK NAB) and the Implementation Taskforce on Growing a Culture of Social Impact Investing. Sir Harvey McGrath, chair of UK NAB and Big Society Capital, and Elizabeth Corley, chair of the Implementation Taskforce and vice-chair of Allianz Global Investors, will lead the new body and the process of hiring a chief executive has begun. Corley said: “The institute will play a significant role in ensuring the UK continues to stay at the forefront of innovation in impact investing, enabling UK savers to invest in line with their values and have increased ownership over the social outcomes that their money generates.” Civil Society DIGITAL Free accelerator program for charity apps Mobile app marketing consultancy Yodel Mobile is offering charities the opportunity to improve their app marketing through a free accelerator programme that will provide expertise on acquiring, engaging and keeping high-value customers and users. Charity Digital News notes that Yodel Mobile last year partnered with Breast Cancer Care App to ensure that the app reached the users who most benefited from it. Charity Digital News WORKFORCE Amnesty bosses leave after ‘toxic’ workplace report Amnesty International is to lose five of its seven senior leadership team, with all seven having offered to resign, following an independent report's finding of a "toxic" workplace culture at the charity. The review, which surveyed 475 workers, found a prevalence of manager bullying, multiple accounts of discrimination based on race, gender and sexual orientation, and an "us versus them" dynamic between employees and management. The review was ordered after two employees killed themselves last year, with one employee explicitly referring to stress and overwork in a note. The Economist says the report about the charity’s work environment illustrates how managers need to seriously consider the views of staff or risk natural work pressures developing into toxic stresses that infect the organisation. The report found that nearly 40% of the human rights charity’s employees developed mental or physical health issues as a result of their work , and this was exacerbated by their belief in the charity’s mission. Amy Edmondson of Harvard Business School suggests the ideal organisation creates an atmosphere of “psychological safety,” where managers learn the art of “respectful inquiry” so workers can speak their minds to attentive bosses. BBC News The Economist Campaign to get non-grads into the sector Charities are being urged to stop excluding people who don't have a degree from applying for jobs. David Burgess, director at Apollo Fundraising, has launched the #NonGraduatesWelcome campaign because he believes a requirement for a degree-level education can be a barrier to diversity. He said: “We want organisations to consider what they are really looking for when asking for a degree-level qualification and to be more transparent about the skills and experience they require." The campaign has support from John Thompson, director of fundraising & recruitment services at Changing Business, and Lizzi Hollis, head of corporate engagement and partnerships at Richard House Children’s Hospice. Civil Society Prisoners given day-release to boost employability Thousands more prisoners across the UK may be allowed to leave prison to work and help charities on day release, under new rules aimed to boost employment amongst those leaving prison. Justice Secretary David Gauke says: "Broadening access to training and work opportunities is a vital part of our strategy to steer offenders away from a life of crime," with those able to find employment after serving sentences statistically less likely to commit further offences. The Times The Guardian TAX Don't claim VAT relief on social media adverts, says HMRC HM Revenue and Customs says charities must pay a standard VAT rate for social media advertising. A zero-rating doesn't apply to advertising services targeted at selected individuals or groups, the tax authority said. But Richard Bray, vice chair of the Charity Tax Group, said this was not necessarily an “open and shut” case. “The Charity Tax Group is in discussions with HMRC over the issue and we would encourage anyone contacted by HMRC to get in contact with their professional adviser,” he said. Civil Society CAMPAIGNS Millions 'lack access' to parks and green spaces Millions of people in Great Britain do not have access to a nearby park or green space, a study suggests. The Green Space Index by Fields in Trust found that more than 2.5m people lived more than a 10-minute walk from the nearest area. The charity notes that there is no statutory protection for green spaces in Britain, with about 6% of parks and green spaces protected, and calls for the Index to be used as an “early warning system as we should be doing more to protect”. BBC News LEGAL Gift Aid fraudster spent more than £76k cruising the world A charity treasurer who tried to steal more than £330,000 in a Gift Aid repayment fraud has been jailed for three years. Dale Hicks of Stoke-on-Trent abused his position at a Staffordshire based ex-offenders charity by lodging a string of false claims, an HMRC investigation found. Hicks spent at least £76,000 of the cash on cruises and other holidays. Press Release Accountancy Daily Third Sector Back to Charity Times archive >>​​

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What Options are Available to You as a Newly Qualified Lawyer?

The decisions you make in the lead up to completing your training contract to qualify as a lawyer and the steps you take in the run-up to qualification will determine your future career path. So, what options are available to you as a newly qualified lawyer? Many newly qualified lawyers (NQs) will decide to stay with and progress within their current firm, but the internal process may take a long time to complete and may not have roles open in the area you wish to qualify in to. In the meantime, it’s important to keep your options open and make decisions that reflect your desired long-term career path. Our specialist legal recruiters have put together advice to help you make an informed decision! Firms When deciding where to accept a role for when you qualify, you can choose between different-sized law firms, an in-house role, overseas or perhaps a position within a government body. When it comes to law firms, there are many options for you to choose from. In terms of the UK legal market, your main decision will be choosing between joining a US law firm, a Magic Circle or Silver Circle firm, a leading international firm or a smaller West End firm, and timing can mean everything when it comes to applying for roles for a newly qualified lawyer. In regards to salary, US firms sit at the top of the legal market but they are newer to the London market so typically, these firms tend to have smaller trainee pools. This means that when it comes to hiring NQs, they often need to look externally. US firms will typically begin to hire first in the London legal market, with most US firms currently interviewing and some have already offered jobs to their next pool of NQs - their search start date gets earlier every year, so it’s important to get advice from recruiters as soon as possible if you are looking to work for a US firm! On the other hand, large UK firms like those in the Magic Circle, Silver Circle and leading international firms have bigger internal trainee pools and they tend to prioritise retaining their own trainees once they qualify, understandably as they have already invested time into training and developing them as rounded legal professionals. It is around June that the internal recruitment processes come to an end within large UK and international law firms and it is often at this point that these firms begin to look externally for NQs. There is a similar timeline for smaller West End firms, who generally start their hiring process and seek out NQs around June and July. The better the market conditions, the earlier you can look, but as a general rule, it is always best to start looking earlier rather than later to ensure you don’t miss the boat. We would suggest that September-qualified candidates should start looking for roles around May, and March-qualified candidates from November. There are benefits to each of these types of firm. If you are looking for a smaller team feel with a higher level of client contact, a US firm might be a good fit for you, whilst firms in the Magic Circle have great training and development programmes in place. Ultimately, it comes down to what you are looking for from your career. Practice area When deciding on a practice area to pursue, it’s important to choose what you enjoy most! Always consider the long-term and your career goals, and have a back-up practice area that you would also be interested in working in. There are particularly busy practice areas, usually transactional areas, so if this is well-suited to you, consider looking for roles in areas such as Corporate, Banking, Funds or Tax. Some areas have very few external roles for NQs to move into. These are generally the most popular areas for people to qualify into, including Disputes and Intellectual Property, and these are typically filled by the firm’s internal trainees meaning that practices within these areas very rarely need to look externally for NQs. Carry out research to find out which firms have the best reputation in your preferred practice area and take advantage of the expert market knowledge from recruiters here at Pro-Legal! Ideally, you will land yourself a position at a market-leading firm within your chosen practice area, however, don’t be disheartened if you don’t right away - it may be that you need to gain skills and experience and work towards the firm you want to end up in. It's not impossible to change specialisms down the line, but most lawyers will develop and progress within the practice area they qualify into. There a number of factors to consider when deciding on a practice area to specialise in, but the most important thing is to make sure you enjoy the work and can see yourself progressing within this practice area. There are so many options available to NQs, and the decision you make running up to qualification will shape your future as a lawyer. We work with many leading US, Magic Circle, international and West End firms, and have placed many NQs into roles in a variety of firms and practice areas. Speak to one of our specialist legal consultants for a confidential discussion to help you make an informed decision that’s right for you at this critical stage of your career. For more information on this article, or advice on the current legal market and the prospects available to you as a newly qualified lawyer, contact Tamara on 020 7269 6368 or tamara.salem@pro-legal.co.uk.

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How Can Marketing and Communications Support the UK Charity Sector?

2018 was a transformative year for charities with the sector facing many challenges, and this year a 'quiet marketing revolution' has been happening in the charity and wider Not-For-Profit sector. Organisations are looking to not just help those in need but empower them as well – how can marketing and communications help? 2019 has seen brand purpose come under the spotlight and scrutinised like never before, with criticisms particularly prevalent when it comes to commerce and corporate businesses trying to 'do good'. This scrutiny has also extended to the Not-For-Profit sector and charities are moving away from a paternalistic approach to one of empowerment in the way they market themselves and their services. Allys Thomas, Oxfam's Head of Brand explains: "There has gradually been more appetite for [images of empowerment] and charities themselves can play a role in driving and shaping that too, so it's become about how we can challenge and change public discourse as well as respond to it." Not-For-Profit organisations should think about marketing as more than simply a way to raise more money towards a valuable cause, but it is also important that charities utilise marketing and communications tools to promote their cause, raise funds, and portray themselves in the desired way. Global Corporate Social Responsibility Director, Frank Krikhaar, of global marketing agency Dentsu Aegis Network, identifies what the charity sector could learn directly from the marketing world - what he considers the 4 C's. 1. Consolidation Mergers and acquisitions are commonplace in the marketing world and it has been often identified that mid-sized charities are often competing against other similar sized charities working on the same cause for the same pot of money – why not consider merging? A recent example of UK Charities joining forces would be Beating Bowel Cancer and Bowel Cancer UK merging in December 2017 – if charities have shared goals, executives ought to consider strength in numbers. 2. Collaboration If a merger is improbable then what about collaboration? Working together should certainly be considered more frequently amongst UK charities. This concept is not absent from the sector as in larger charities, internal marketing, communications, events and fundraising departments collaborate together as they all work cohesively to build awareness and raise funds. Collaboration is encouraged in the marketing agency industry as seen with the Common Ground UN initiative bringing together some of the biggest advertising holding groups curbing competition to tackle the United Nation’s Sustainable Development Goals as together they support and promote global issues. Charities can identify opportunities to collaborate externally with other charities such as hosting challenge fundraising occasions such as long distance running events. Collaborating not only helps drive and increase support for each cause but also contributes enormously to the atmosphere, which makes attending memorable. 3. Content It has been consistently noted by numerous marketing leaders that content is key and the UK charity sector should also continue to integrate this. Charities of all sizes can participate as creating content can be inexpensive but still highly engaging. A great example of planned content is Great Ormond Street Children’s Hospital’s storytelling with #OneDayAtGOSH consisting of hourly shots and snippets from the hospital - the use of Instagram stories can be excellent in supporting this and can help build a following in the same way successful vloggers use these tools. Aside from this, the effective use of all social media platforms, the creation of short videos and graphics, and the regular publishing of blogs on behalf of a charity are all ways in which low-cost marketing initiatives can be incredibly effective. 4. Confidence Have confidence in digital marketing as these tools can be very progressive as seen in recent years with the rise of Crowdfunding and GlobalGiving which has changed the donor culture and landscape. Particularly useful are mobile and digital fundraising platforms like instaGiv - partnered with more than 300 UK charities including Macmillan Cancer Support, Tearfund and Amnesty International, instaGiv offers a range of mobile and digital solutions for the third sector and has helped raise over £7.5m. Recent reports on Activate - a texting platform that lets charities talk directly with supporters in real-time - have also seen positive results. The app has been widely texted in the UK and a few charities have now used Activate in the UK, including the People's Vote campaign. Patrick Heneghan from People's Vote said: 'Activate has been a valuable tool in our campaign. We reached thousands of supporters within minutes and had an expert team at the ready to engage in conversation and drive action. We used Activate to recruit volunteers, get people out to events and raise significant funds.' The younger generations are increasingly interested in how the money going to charities is collected – storifying this as a campaign can blend well in the form of content as mentioned above. The digitally savvy Generation Z are now entering the UK workforce, so incorporating digital trends will attract them and encourage donations and we may even find that these younger generations will change the future path of marketing and communications in the third sector. To conclude, if the competition is close and funding is limited – perhaps acquisitions or working together to achieve shared goals is the way forward for charities this year. Not-For-Profit organisations should also be embracing digital platforms for marketing and advertising and become part of a sector-wide progressive movement to empower people, which will simultaneously attract the generations entering the workforce in the coming years. Lastly, plan content and don't be afraid to get creative - the more creative, the better story created for your brand and the more memorable your content and campaigns will be! Here at Pro-Marketing, we focus on making Marketing, Fundraising and Communications appointments across all levels in the Charity and wider Not-For-Profit sector. For more information on this article or to speak to our industry experts about your future in Marketing, contact Nicholas on 020 7269 6338 or nicholas.ogden@pro-recruitment.co.uk.

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May 2019: Tax Movers and Shakers

Stay up-to-date with the movers and shakers in the tax sector. Here are the key movements in May 2019: PRACTICE LONDON AND CITY Kingston Smith has announced a number of Partner promotions including those in tax; Ruth Brennan and Ryan Day. Brennan delivers corporate tax services to a broad range of clients including owner-managed, listed and private equity-backed businesses in the UK and internationally. Day is a member of the general practice team, where he provides the full range of audit, accounting, tax and advisory services. Kingston Smith has joined Moore Stephens International, a global accounting and advisory network, effective from 1st May 2019. Smith & Williamson has announced that it is set to move to its London office from its current base at 25 Moorgate to 40 Gresham Street during the course of the summer of 2022. Saffery Champness has appointed Pete Hackleton as Head of the Sports & Entertainment Practice group. Hackleton, a chartered tax adviser, has been a partner at Saffery Champness since 2012 and his clients include international and national sport governing bodies, clubs, major venues, rights holders, other sports businesses and individuals. Ernst & Young (EY) has appointed Julie Teigland as the area managing partner for Europe, the Middle East, India and Africa (EMEIA) with effect from 1st July 2019. She is currently the regional managing partner for Germany, Switzerland and Austria. Cameron Baum has announced that with effect from 1st May 2019 it is now Cameron Baum Hollander. Blick Rothenberg has announced that Sean Randall, a highly regarded stamp duty specialist, has joined the firm. Randall comes with near 20 years experience, the last 5 within a Big 4. NORTH WEST Baldwins has acquired Montpelier Chartered Accountants, a firm based in Preston. With effect from 1st April 2019, Hall Livesey Brown’s Chester office, which has been led by partner Charles Parsons since 1986, merged with MD Coxey & Co and now trades under the new name of Coxeys. BDO Manchester has appointed Liam O’Doherty as Tax Partner. O’Doherty joins from PwC where he was a Director and specialises largely within the real estate sector. SOUTH WEST BDO Bristol welcomes Matthew Sewell as a Tax Partner to provide tax services to fast-growing and multinational businesses in the South West, focusing on international tax services and supporting in-house finance and tax functions. He was formerly a tax partner at RSM. OVERSEAS BDO Ireland has appointed Warren Novis to lead the firm’s growing transfer pricing practice. He joined in April 2019 bringing 15 years’ experience as an in-house expert and as an advisor. He joins from Aptiv PLC (formerly Delphi Automotive). COMMERCE AND INDUSTRY Apex Group welcomes Peter Bellini as Senior Vice President. He joins from Eurostar. Lebara has appointed Jane Jia as their Head of Tax, having previously been Senior Tax Manager at Ernest & Young (EY). Cognizant has announced that they have promoted James Yu. Formerly Vice President of Tax, he is now SVP Tax & Treasurer. For more information about this article, or to speak to Rebecca about your recruiting needs or Tax jobs in London or Nationwide, contact her on 02072696321 or rebecca.english@pro-tax.co.uk.

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Pro-Group Place 35th in the Top Companies for Graduates to Work For 2019/20!

The results of the JobCrowd's annual survey on the Top Companies for Graduates to Work For were released at the end of May 2019, and we are so pleased to announce that Pro-Recruitment Group made into the Top 100 companies in the UK, placing at number 35! The rankings published by the JobCrowd are based exclusively on feedback from employees, and Pro ranked at number 35 in the top graduate employers for 2019/20 in the UK! The Pro brand consists of Pro-Tax, Pro-Legal, Pro-Finance, Pro-HR and Pro-Marketing, and as an award-winning member of the IRP (Institute of Recruiting Professionals), we are dedicated to improving the recruitment landscape - we believe this starts with our employees and making Pro the best possible place to work! So, why should you join the Pro-Family as a Graduate Recruitment Consultant? Working at Pro as a Graduate Recruitment Consultant will give you the opportunity to take control of your own career and you will have a clear progression path laid out from day 1 - with the average promotion time being 8 months. LinkedIn research found that the #1 reason people change jobs is career progression, and here at Pro we want people to fly when it comes to their personal career development and success - here are even more reasons why should be looking for your next role in recruitment! Pro-Recruitment Group is one of the market leaders in the UK and you will be trained by some of the best recruiters and trainers in the industry and be given the opportunity to learn how to succeed in recruitment - read more here! Not only this, but you will also become a specialist in our niche areas - current graduates gave our training programme five stars. We use resources and industry leaders both internally and externally with both classroom-based and on the job training, and you will be supported by Directors, Managers and the wider business to help you to succeed in any way possible. Here at Pro, we have an office environment that reflects what our employees want from their workplace, as well as ‘Pro-Perks’, which has also scored us five stars in feedback from current employees for company culture and enjoyment. From team nights out and drinks every Friday, to flexible working arrangements and birthdays off, to free tea, coffee and fresh fruit in the office, and even “Pawternity Leave”, we offer everyone who works at Pro a long list of perks and benefits that motivate people and make work a dynamic, fun place to be. We even take our high achievers on all expenses paid trips! By getting our environment right, we have succeeded in creating a workplace where people are encouraged to thrive and develop, and everyone is a valued member of the Pro family. Our results from the JobCrowd annual survey: ★★★★★ Enjoyment ★★★★★ Colleagues ★★★★★ Training ★★★★★ Company Culture ★★★★★ Environmental Awareness ★★★★ Compensation & Benefits ★★★★ Corporate Responsibility What recent graduates have to say about working at Pro-Group: 'Best things are the people and the environment. We have an excellent benefits package as well!' 'I have full responsibility for all my work and projects from start to finish, great people to work with and I have achieved so much in such a short amount of time.' 'Everyone supports one another and gets on, great office culture, great opportunities for progression and everyone wants everyone else to succeed.' 'Great culture, high earning potential and management flexibility.' 'I love my colleagues and the freedom I get from my line manager to go after whatever I want.' We are currently hiring graduates to join the Pro-Family as Graduate Recruitment Consultants. To join us, contact Loren on 020 7269 6358 or loren@pro-recruitment.co.uk.

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60 Seconds with: Sarah Cooke, Head of Tax at Euromoney PLC

Sarah Cooke is the Global Head of Tax, Treasury & Investor Relations at Euromoney Institutional Investor PLC. Euromoney is an international business-to-business information company focusing on the global financial community, is listed on the London Stock Exchange and is a member of the FTSE 250 share index. In your opinion has the role of the “in-house tax professional” changed much over the years and if so, what is the biggest change? The biggest change has been the transition from being a predominately reactive back office function to a proactive business partner to the business. You have an impressive career boasting some very interesting roles in-house, for you what has been the most challenging of all roles and why? I think it was the transition to take on Treasury as this was a whole new area and I had to learn the different words the bankers use to describe the same thing! It was important to appear competent but also not be afraid to ask questions when I didn’t understand. This was sometimes tricky. Euromoney – tell us about any big changes/acquisitions or exciting projects that have affected your role here? Things are always changing here at Euromoney but that is part of the attraction. I have recently taken on Investor Relations just when we have a group of new shareholders. I am therefore having to learn to juggle 3 different areas which is challenging but hugely rewarding. What is great about working for Euromoney? Euromoney is very entrepreneurial and fast-paced. We are able to influence and implement change quickly which is fantastic. How big is your team and what advice would you give anyone who would apply to be part of the team in years to come? I don’t have a large team as we are a lean organisation, however, I look for anyone coming in to have a positive outlook and a solution-focused mindset. I don’t want to just be brought the problem. How would your team describe you? Positive, enthusiastic and hopefully fun. What advice would you give to your younger self? To never assume people know what you want in terms of your career, make sure you let your manager know if you have an ambition for something or a particular role. They may not be able to give it to you today, but you never know what opportunities may present themselves in the future. What challenges, personally or professionally, do you think the next generation face? The impact of robots changing traditional roles. What do you do to unwind outside of work? A combination of sport (watching and doing), trying new restaurants, and relaxing with my family, ideally in Provence. Thanks for your time Sarah, and as a little treat for all of our readers…do you have any guilty pleasures you can share with us? Cheesy Discos and American teenage dramas (Gossip Girl being my favourite!) For more information about this article, or to speak to Alison about your recruiting needs or Tax opportunities in London or Nationwide, contact her on 02072696312 or alison.humphries@pro-tax.co.uk.

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60 Seconds With: Alicia Crisp, Partner at MHA MacIntyre Hudson

Alicia joined MacIntyre Hudson as a graduate trainee at the North London office in 2007, qualifying as a chartered accountant in 2010. Alicia is a Partner in the London office, managing a portfolio of clients, and her key focus is working with owner managed businesses across London and south Hertfordshire, from new start-ups to long-standing companies. You have an impressive career with all of your time being at Macintyre Hudson, what do you think the benefits of staying with one firm throughout your career history are? For me, a huge part of being an accountant is working with people. Being at the same firm means that whether I'm trying to support a new trainee with a problem, mentor someone looking for promotion or deal with a technical client query I have some idea of what they are going through. It also means if I’m not comfortable with the way something is working I know how to go about trying to find a solution. It has its limitations too though, whenever I recruit someone from another firm I encourage them to suggest different approaches to doing things. You must be very proud of being promoted after only 10 years of joining the firm. Are you one of the youngest people that have made Partner? While I was the youngest Partner for a while, I certainly wasn't the youngest ever. I was 22 when I started whereas some of our Partners have started as school leavers at 18. Last year I was awarded number one in the Accountancy Age 35 under 35 just before our AGM. While I was thrilled it also felt slightly awkward, I have never thought I am doing anything special and my fellow Partners certainly helped keep me grounded with the jokes about the advantage of being the only partner under 35 at the time! On day one you never know what lies ahead of you. When did you realise that Macintyre Hudson was the firm you wished to be a Partner at and why? I am quite a loyal person, MacIntyre Hudson has always presented great opportunities and variety which made it easy to want to stay and I'm not someone who would leave just in case there is something better out there. I have had opportunities to move on and have always chosen to stay – while things aren’t always perfect, as a firm it really does suit me, I like the level of client contact that I have had from the beginning, we are small enough that hard work and a good attitude mean you can be recognised and rewarded but large enough to have some top-level specialists that mean we can give a level of client service to be proud of. What is great about working for Macintyre Hudson? I can get a bit over-enthusiastic about why I think MHA is a great firm to work with or for - it has changed a lot in the time I have been here but growth has brought with it lots of opportunities. Inevitably we lose a number of our newly-qualified staff to industry each year, but the feedback we always hear when they come back to visit is realising just how much great training and support they have received at MHA compared to other people out there. How big is your team and what advice would you give anyone who would apply to be part of the team? My immediate team is seven people but I dip into other teams a lot and at peak times can have as many as twenty people working for me. As one of the staff partners in the London office and someone with a growing team, I do a lot of interviewing. The best advice I can give is to be open about who you are and what you value. A key strength in any team is the diversity of skills, abilities and life experiences. Be frank about what you can bring to the table and authentic about what motivates you - while you need to have your interview answers prepped you need to let through some of yourself, it isn't all about scripted answers to questions! How would your team describe you? Tough question! I’d guess fair, approachable and if I am honest possibly a bit demanding. I am a firm believer that you get back what you put in, that doesn't mean that you have to work twelve hours every day of the week, but I want everyone to make the most of the opportunities to learn and develop, it will make people want to invest in you (and also makes it easier to accept the days when you maybe lose your focus a bit!) While I can be out of the office a lot, if someone on the team is experiencing a personal issue, supporting them is a key priority so I will endeavour to stop and make time for them. What advice would you give to your younger self? Maybe to do a couple more life-experience type things before settling down for a career, it feels like there's so much pressure to get a job and start moving forward with life when really another year or two of travelling or learning a language wouldn't have hurt, as long as I could have worked enough to pay for it. That said, I was lucky enough to take a sabbatical in 2013/14 to do a ski season in France which was a great opportunity to catch up on something I wished I had done before. When you interview someone for your team or organisation what is the first thing you notice about a person and what does it tell you? I really try hard not to be distracted by first impressions, it is easy to be put off by someone rushing their words due to being nervous or distracted by lack of neat presentation. Although, neat and appropriate clothing and a sensible handshake will always help get things off to a good start! What challenges, personally or professionally, do you think the next generation face? There are a lot of unknowns about technology, things are changing so rapidly I can imagine it will be hard for people to plan what to study when things are changing so much. The cost of studying is increasing too so there is pressure on making the ‘right’ decision. Apprenticeships such as the AAT are a great way to balance getting professional training while earning money. It is never too late to change your mind or take some time out, accountancy was a last minute career change for me coming out of university and I have never looked back! What do you do to unwind outside of work? I love doing things that are different from the day job, particularly being active. When I can, I go climbing or to a dance workshop, but at the very least I try and get to the gym or go for a run even if the thought of finding the time is stressful. Aside from that, even if my day finishes late I try and end the evening with a couple of pages of a book - it really helps to switch off Thanks for your time Alicia, and as a little treat for all of our readers…do you have any guilty pleasures you can share with us? Theme parks - every year I take at least one day off to go to somewhere like Thorpe Park or Blackpool Pleasure Beach, genuinely one of my favourite days every year. I recently heard someone say one of the great things about having kids was getting to go to theme parks again and I thought 'wow was I supposed to have grown out of that?'. That and the Christmas Movies channel, but that’s a bit seasonal..! For more information about this article, or to speak to Tom about your recruiting needs or Finance opportunities in London or Nationwide, contact him on 02072696349 or tom.eagle@pro-finance.co.uk.

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5 Reasons Why Soft Skills Matter

Soft skills? What are they and why do they matter? Business leaders are becoming more aware of the importance of emotional intelligence, the capacity to be aware of, control, and express emotions and the ability to handle interpersonal relationships with empathy. These are skills which cannot be quantified but have a huge handle on the success of an individual’s career. According to the World Economic Forum, by the year 2020, more than a third of the desired core skill sets of most occupations will be comprised of skills that are not yet considered crucial to those jobs today – while soft skills in the workplace will be in higher demand than the narrow technical ones. Here are 5 reasons why soft skills matter. 1. Soft skills are the new hard skills It might be your hard skills that get you the interview, but it’s the soft skills that bring you success in your career. Soft skills like awareness, curiosity and the ability to connect, refer to personal attributes that enable someone to interact effectively and harmoniously with other people. They’re becoming the hard skills of today’s workforce - it’s not enough to be highly trained in technical skills without developing the understanding of how to work with others harmoniously. More and more organisations are including psychological testing as part of their recruitment process because of this. 2. The ‘super-powers’ that make us ‘super-humans’ We’re not describing the Marvel and DC characters on our cinema screens. We’re looking at real-life traits that enable us to foster trust, build relationships and make colleagues ‘human’, rather than cogs hired simply to be part of the organisational machine. Research conducted by Harvard University, the Carnegie Foundation and Stanford Research Center, has all concluded that 85% of job success comes from having well‐developed soft and people skills, and only 15% of job success comes from technical skills and knowledge (hard skills). We want to know that the colleagues around us can add value to each other emotionally as well as technically. Given that we spend more time with our colleagues than our friends and families, having a team around you who can empathise with you is what makes work a great place to be. 3. They are sculpting the future of work The workplace has evolved. The need for a dynamic of interpersonal skills are becoming ever more important and can’t be ignored. It’s important to be aware of the vital role that soft skills play within your team and your own personal development. The acts of listening, presenting ideas, resolving conflict, and fostering an open and honest work environment all come down to knowing how to build and maintain relationships with people. It's those relationships that allow people to participate fully in team projects, show appreciation for others, and enlist support for their projects. 4. They make good leaders What do we all look for in a good leader? Yes - technically skilled, experienced mentors all help to develop a good functional manager to maintain a status quo in the workplace. But what sets a manager and a leader apart is balancing those technical hard skills with the soft skills that are essential for a business to thrive. Having a leader who can make quick decisions and problem solve is important, but the ability to empower their team, understand team morale, and listen and recognise certain emotions in their employees is what truly makes a good leader. Gary Vaynerchuk has mentioned that although most people think of him as a "mouth," he promises he's really "an ear disguised as a mouth." As Vaynerchuk advises: "To be a great leader, you have to be a great listener." This rings true for everyone, inside and outside of work. And in the workplace, there’s nothing more motivational than having a leader who wants to understand you as a person, your goals as well as your gripes, as opposed to a boss who simply manages their team. 5. Soft skills cultivate a productive workplace Soft skills can be difficult to objectively measure (unlike technical qualifications, which can be tested). However, when you look around your own office, it is usually fairly easy to find those employees lacking soft skills. They are the ones unwilling to accept any kind of change, the ones unable to effectively work and communicate with their colleagues. As employers, as much as we should be supporting our staff in developing technical skills, we should be encouraging our teams to adapt and focus on emotional intelligence - this comes innate to some, but can also be taught through good leadership. Understanding, communication, empathy and harmony in the workplace makes the perfect recipe for success. For you as an employee, you want to be happy in your workplace; for you as an employer, you will see increased productivity. To conclude; people, it seems, still have one commanding competitive advantage over technology - the ability to understand other people. To express empathy, communicate persuasively, and seek common ground in a manner that allows groups to agree on an action plan and, more importantly, to feel collectively invested in its success, has far more value to an organisation that the collective focus on technical and vocational skills. It’s the companies that nurture these kinds of abilities that will have a competitive advantage which sets them apart from the competition. Soft skills are those that cost the least to develop, but in practice have the highest value. For more information about the skills organisations are seeking in the workplace or if you’re looking for more recruitment advice, please contact Pat Keogh on 020 7269 6311 or email pat.keogh@pro-recruitment.co.uk.

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