- “The Network” series of podcasts is part of CA ANZ’s new brand campaign promoting Chartered Accountants as a trusted source of advice for SMEs
- In the podcast on “Technology”, finance personality Ross Greenwood catches up with Julie Hough CA partner at the Fordham Group
- The podcast demonstrates how SMEs can navigate digital disruption with the support of their CA
Technology can help SMEs compete with the big end of town, but the way small businesses adapt to changes in technology is critical. As Ross Greenwood says to special guest Julie Hough CA, partner of the Fordham Group, when it comes to digital disruption, SMEs must "move or die".
"Technology first disrupts, then it is the change enabler, then the efficiency comes."
The conversation is part of The Network series of podcasts produced by Chartered Accountants ANZ, to promote Chartered Accountants as a trusted source of advice "driving the business behind your business".
As Hough notes, "Technology first disrupts, then it is the change enabler, then the efficiency comes." In short, technology has been a game changer that has seen new players replaced long established businesses – and no SME owner can afford to overlook the potential threats or opportunities.
SMEs need to think about "mission-critical technology – what is it that they need to maintain their market share, their viability and the value of their business," explains Hough.
The podcast delivers a compelling message about the value that CAs can offer to SMEs in a market undergoing significant digital change. As Greenwood notes, the cost of technology has, in the past, been a barrier to entry for SMEs. But that's changing, and Uber is a stellar example of how technology can undercut a long established industry.
Greenwood and Hough take a look at how business management systems like Xero, have allowed SMEs – even those with multiple outlets or franchise systems, to have all the figures and information needed at their fingertips. Hough explains Xero has been a life changer for CAs too: "We can see in the cloud the same data the client can see."
However, SMEs can face uncertainty about which technology to invest in. "A business plan must include capital expenditure plans," says Hough. "These days technology is the biggest proportion of this (capital spending)…but if you need finance, you must demonstrate the viability of the purchase over time." This of course, is an area where CAs can lend considerable support.
For SME owners, who often face a battle with IT jargon, the easy conversation between Greenwood and Hough covers the key issues SMEs face in regards to technology in simple, relatable terms.
The podcast sends a strong message to SMEs that a CA is the go-to person for support and advice to navigate digital disruption and make the most of new technology.
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Hear Julie Hough and Ross Greenwood discuss how a CA can help SMEs make the most of new technology.Check out the podcast here