PQ magazine, April 2016

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PQ is a free monthly magazine for student accountants, focusing on the ACCA, CIMA, CIPFA, ICAEW and AAT qualifications. It's packed full of study tips, advice and guidance on how to pass accountancy exams, plus careers advice from the experts. PQ is the UK's leading independent accountancy magazine.


  • PQmagazineApril 2016 www.pqmagazine.co.uk / www.pqjobs.co.uk


    pq april 16 p01 q9 ccm.qxp_pq feb 12 p01 10/03/2016 12:14 Page 1

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    News 08ACCA reading time Changes

    to add 15 minutes to each exam10The workplace Women are

    still not getting a fair deal12Corporate Governance

    Code No change for three yearsFeatures, etc06Mind your Ps&Qs ACCA

    wants to know your thoughts;Alan Hatfield explains all; and indefence of south Londons estates

    14Mental wellbeing CABA canhelp; and how to get the extrafour ACCA Professional marks

    16PQ Awards 2016 So who werethe winners at Caf de Paris?Loads of great pictures fromaccountancys best-loved event

    18Lets get technical Comparingand contrasting the variousmethods of costing vital stuff

    20ICAEW spotlight Financialstatement analysis is a key skillwhen it comes to the case study

    22Back to basics We explainhow salary journals work

    23Ethics Tread carefully when itcomes to accepting hospitality

    24CIOT winners list All thewinners plus the paper results

    26Exam planning Educatorsmust empower students to thinkflexibly and take control

    27CIMA case study Integrationis the key to success

    28Learning tips We all learn indifferent ways, and its importantyou know how your mind works

    30Careers #1 Improving yourworkplace communication skillswill boost your prospects; andwin a free study course

    31Careers #2 Life at the ICAEW;our Book Club review; plus thebest of social media

    34Fun time When exams arepants; and our great giveaways

    The columnistsRobert Bruce Why are accountingstandards so confusing? 8Prem Sikka Profession must rise toto human rights challenges 10Carl Lygo Colombia looks forwardto a brighter future 12

    Subscribe to PQ magazineIts FREE see page 33 or go to


    ABC July 2014 June 2015 32,233

    Publishers statement: We send adigital issue of the magazine to anadditional 8,090 requested readers

    Free to all accountancy studentsAnnual subscription: 35 (50 overseas)

    Its what were here for Our lead letter this month is encouraging PQs to feedbacktheir real feelings, good and bad, to the ACCA. If you dontcomplete the student survey then the ACCA really doesnt

    know how you feel! One thing we do know is the top brass at the ACCAis definitely reading PQ magazine. Our letters page this month also has adetailed explanation from executive director Alan Hatfield about thereasons why the ACCA doesnt have an official exam day as such. Thepromise is that once things have bedded down with the new four examsitting it will go back to a fixed date rather than week commencing.

    Talking of the ACCA, we wererecently given a tour of the new officesat the Adelphi. They have a real wowfactor, and are much more in keepingwith the modern, vibrant organisationthat is the ACCA. And I can confirmwe were not influenced by thewonderful cream tea that was laid on!The ACCA has now announced it will be selling its properties atnumbers 10 and 29 Lincolns Inn Fields, and is expecting this will add awhopping 20m to its coffers.

    We also contacted CIMA this month about integration marks and theuse of real-life business examples in the case study exams. We nowhave definitive answers on both these questions (see pages 10 and 27).

    We have been on our travels as well. We have been to Manchester,Birmingham and even south London! We had to go to south London tomeet up with our PQ of the Year. Manuy Figueroa is the first-ever PQ notto make it to our awards! He missed a great night but his mumapparently wouldnt let him out as he had chickenpox. We discoveredour winner also has another passion apart from accountancy Latinmusic (check out Manzana Tropical). To find out who all the winnerswere for 2016 turn to page 16.

    Graham Hambly, PQ magazine editor graham@pqaccountant.com

    CONTENTS April 2016

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    PQ Magazine Fourth floor, Central House, 142 Central Street, London EC1V 8AR | Phone: 020 7216 6444 | Email: graham@pqaccountant.comWebsite: www.pqmagazine.co.uk | Editor/publisher: Graham Hambly graham@pqaccountant.com | Advertising manager: Polly Thrasivoulou polly@pqaccountant.com

    Associate editor: Adam Riches | Art editor: Tim Parker | Subscriptions: dom@pqaccountant.com | Contributors: Robert Bruce, Prem Sikka, Carl Lygo, Tony Kelly, Phil Gammon, Jo Daley | Origination and print services by Classified Central Media

    If you have any problems with delivery, or if you want to change your delivery address, please email dom@pqaccountant.com

    Published by PQ Publishing PQ Publishing 2016

    Listen to PQs, ACCA...I recently received an email fromthe ACCA requesting their feedbackon a number of matters I assumethousands of fellow students havereceived the same. Overall, I ratedACCA poorly owing to its lack oftransparency over its arbitrarydecision not to publish full pastpapers, its lack of transparencythrough the re-marking process(why on earth shouldnt a studentwho has paid for ACCA to remarktheir paper not receive a full

    breakdown Ive beenfortunate to pass allpapers to date butcertainly wouldnt

    The writer of the star letter each month wins a fantastic I PQ mug!

    email graham@pqaccountant.com

    And ACCA writesId like to explain to PQ readersabout ACCAs exam results dates.As we continue to implement ournew four exam session a yearmodel we are currently advisingthat results will be issued on aweek commencing date and wereasking for patience from ourstudents whilewe introduce anumber ofimprovements.

    In additionto providingthe opportunityfor students tosit examsevery threemonths, we also want to publishresults faster and were aiming toreduce this from eight weeks to sixweeks. We did that successfully inthe September and December2015 sessions where we were ableto publish results on the Monday ofthe week-commencing date.

    This will be our first Marchsession and were delighted thatthousands of students are takingadvantage of it, as was also thecase with our pilot in September.So we now know how muchstudents love the flexibility of ournew exam model. Were alsoconfident students will appreciategetting their results earlier, andother benefits such as our dualexam session booking feature.

    We appreciate that students andlearning providers would prefer tohave a fixed results publicationdate. It is our intention to go backto a fixed date once we haveembedded this new and innovativeexam model.

    Also, once it becomes clearduring the marking period whenresults will be published, we willadvise students of the exact date. Itis a new process for all involved,and were asking students to come

    with us on this journey, with thenew exam sessions being just thefirst of many exciting examdevelopments we will be sharingwith you in the future. So, with aneye to the future Think Ahead isour strapline after all we areconfident we will be able to offerfixed exam dates later this year andwe promise to keep you in the loopon this.Alan Hatfield, Executive Director Strategy & Development, ACCA

    Alan Hatfield

    Rough justice?Just read your Editorial where yourefer to a rough south Londonestate (PQ, February 2016). Ithink its great that you commentedon the differences in earnings andits relationship to class, but I justwonder about describing anunspecified south London estate asrough. As you can probablyguess, I grew up on a southLondon (council) estate and minehas been referred to in such a waytoo (one book infamously called itthe worst estate in London, which Itook up with the author face toface). Where I grew up it wasntactually what I would call rough,and I just wonder that using theterm in your article might not reinforce a view about such estateswhich could be challenged.

    If Patrick Okogwu, who youmentioned, said it was rough I haveno problem whatsoever, as anopinion or an experience is veryindividual and I fully respect that.But as I read it it isnt clear wherethe adjective rough has comefrom. Your editorial is clearlysupportive of a meritocraticapproach, and I support that too,so Im a bit concerned that it mightinadvertently make achieving thatharder if it implies particularestates/postcodes are rough.

    Or am I just being a bit toosensitive? Should I just go and havea cup of tea and move on?Dave Knight, Faculty of Businessand Law, Leeds Beckett University

    Exams must be hardMarchs star letter writer should bethankful, not disgruntled, that werestudying for a qualification (ACCA)that is actually worth the paper itswritten on. The upside is that theletter communicated this toemployers. And blaming low passrates on the difficulty of the paperor the harsh marking seriously?Stan Cullerne-Bown, ACCA PQ,Nottingham



    engage in the appeals process as itstands), and its persistence at notentertaining a student council toallow constructive feedback. Youcan add to that list the poor StudentLearning Hub.

    I just want to take this opportunityto encourage as many students aspossible to complete the survey andprovide their feedback (eitherpositive or negative) in the hopeaction might be taken by ACCA.Sadly, thousands of comments onwebsites (and published articles inPQ) are yet to engage ACCA onthese matters, so Im desperatelyhoping this will work.Name and address supplied

    PQ April 16 p6 q9 CCM.qxp_pq aprl08 p04 10/03/2016 11:52 Page 1

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  • 8 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ news

    You could be forgiven for thinking youwere listening to a conversationconducted by martians. Arrangementsto sort out the mismatch of timingsover when various accountingstandards come into force hascreated a scramble to sort everythingout. The forthcoming standard oninsurance contracts and the existingone on financial instruments were notfinished at the same time. So they willnot come into force at the same time.But some elements of each connect,so a form of interim what-goes-where-and-when arrangement has tobe introduced. This is hugelyconfusing and employs principles,ideas and practical short-termpractices. You couldnt make it up.

    By 2020 everything may be inequilibrium or not. Meanwhile, thebrightest brains in technicalaccounting have to unravel it andthen explain it. This is where themartians come in. It is highlytechnical. The language grows evermore dense. I can remember back inthe day going to an AccountingStandards Board seminar on theinfamous IAS 39, the standard onfinancial instruments. Afterwards, thethen Financial Editor of The Timesturned to me: For the next 15minutes we will be experts in this.After that we will not have a clue. Soit was; so it is. Accounting has onceagain parted company with its abilityto describe complex things in termsthat your granny would understand.And that means it will start losing itssupport in the wider business world.


    Accountingstandards: is there lifeon Mars?

    Robert Bruce is an award-winning writer onaccountancy for The Times

    Twitchy AATs

    ACCA exams: 15 minutesadded via RAPT changes

    Great Leeds giveawayPQ magazine has joined

    forces with First Intuition Leeds tooffer 10 free courses to readers.First Intuition has opened up nextto the station at 1 Aire Street,Leeds LS1 4PR, and to celebrate isgiving away 10 free courses. Toenter this giveaway see page 30.

    Degrees more popularThe number of students

    choosing to study accountancy atUK universities is touching 7,000,according to UCAS figures. In total,

    6,975 students signed up tocourses in 2015, 21% more thanchose to study accountancy in2007. The number of womenopting for accountancy is also up.

    Ethical dilemma Teachers need a code of

    ethics to help them resist thepressures to play the system, saysthe UKs outgoing exams regulator,Dame Glenys Stacey. Ofqual CEOStacey is worried about the greyareas; Ofqual research found thatteachers thought it acceptable to

    discuss what might come up inexams and not teach the wholesyllabus. What is clearlyunacceptable behaviour is toencourage pupils to rote-learn likelyanswers.

    CIPFA Thinks CIPFA specialises in all

    aspects of public services financeand their expertise in the sector isunrivalled so they keep telling us!To make this wealth of knowledgemore accessible they have createdCIPFA Thinks, a collection of

    articles, comments andpublications giving all theinformation youll ever need toknow about public finance. Seewww.cipfa.org/cipfa-thinks

    The Finance Academy Government finance

    professionals (GFPs) are to havetheir own Finance Academy,according to the Treasurys DavidAllen. The academy will be the go-to place for the development andlearning needs of all GFPs and ahub for advice on how to get on.

    In brief

    The ACCA is removing the exam restrictions relating tothe 15 minutes reading and planning time. In effect,this makes all F5 to P7 exams 195 minutes long!

    From September, candidates will be able to use thistime however they choose. The ACCA said nothingreally changes, as the total exam time remains thesame at three hours and 15 minutes.

    But some tutors are worried that it will be quicklyforgotten that that time was to encourage students totake their time at the beginning of the exam to read thequestions carefully and to properly plan their answers.Students will start writing straight away and others willworry they too should follow suit, explained one tutor.

    ACCA says candidates had told them thatcompleting the candidate answer grid for the MCsections for F5 to F9 was taking up a lot of time. Thepressure to write legibly was also a struggle, and it wassuggested that extra time might help here, too.

    Interestingly, the ACCA also point out that as youngprofessionals candidates have to take responsibility formanaging their time

    See what the ACCA says in full: www.accaglobal.com/gb/en/student/sa/study-skills/rapt-2016

    Now thats what you call a finallevel pass rate! Candidates sittingthe final two CIPFA papers inDecember achieved pass rates of92% for Strategic Leadership and75% of the Strategic FinancialManagement paper.

    The 92% was the highest-everachieved at StrategicLeadership, which hasin the past been as lowas 55% (June 2013).

    Overall the passrates in all 12 paperslook really good, apartfrom the Public SectorFinancial Reportingpaper, which saw adrop to 44% inDecember. In June thispaper had a pass rateof 54%.

    The next lowestpaper pass rate in the

    winter diet was 66%, for theCompany Financial Reporting paperat the certificate level.

    Many pass rates will be looked atby other accountancy students withenvy. December had four paperpass rates over 90% and a furtherthree above 80%.

    CIPFA DECEMBER 2015 RESULTSDec 15 Jun 15

    Financial Accounting 93% 83% Management Accounting 92% 97% Financial Reporting 66% 79%Audit & Assurance 70% 62%Business Management 92% 93%Business Strategy 83% 92%Financial Management 78% 57%Governance, Public Policy 81% 61%Public Finance & tax 87% 94%Public Sector FR 44% 54%Strategic Financial Mment 75% 66%Strategic Leadership 92% 87%

    CIPFA PASS RATES RISEAAT PQs are starting to get twitchyabout changes coming to thesyllabus and assessment in theform of AQ2016.

    New Department for Educationrules will mean students only haveone re-sit assessment opportunity ineach 12-month window. They will,of course, be allowed more resitsonce they are in a new registrationperiod. It means PQs have to bemuch more in control of planningtheir sittings and study patterns.

    PQ magazine understands thatthe AAT is also introducing gradingand synoptic assessments. Gradinguses a three-point scale pass,merit and distinction. You can, ofcourse, also fail! Synoptic tests willbe introduced at each level,drawing on the knowledge obtainedfrom the whole level.

    The changes come into effectfrom the end of the summer.

    PQ Apr 16 p8 q9_pq sept 12 p08 09/03/2016 11:58 Page 10

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  • 10 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ news

    The Universal Declaration of HumanRights (UDHR), published in 1948,commits all UN members to respect,protect and enforce the human rightsof every individual to a standard ofliving for adequate health andwellbeing, including the right to food,water, clothing, medical care, housingand social services. The obligationsapply not only to nation states nocompany, market or cyberspace entityis excluded from UDHR obligations.

    Increasingly, corporations are seenas social organisations that should bededicated to advancement of humanwelfare. Hence the public concernabout poverty wages, environmentaldegradation, industrial accidents andtax avoidance. The Companies Act2013 now requires major companiesto publish a strategic report whichmust explain the effect of corporatepractices on social, community andhuman rights issues.

    The above is in stark contrast to theway companies are portrayed incorporate governance codes andaccounting standards. These remaininformed by old-fashioned economiclogics. Corporate governance codespublished by the Financial ReportingCouncil hardly make any reference tohuman rights. The same goes foraccounting standards focused onshareholder wealth maximisation andthe assumed needs of investors.

    The challenge is to transformaccounting to something which isuseful to a variety of stakeholders. Sofar, accounting regulators have shownlittle sign of rising to this challenge.


    Professionmust rise tohumanrightschallenge

    Prem Sikka is professor of accountancy at theUniversity of Essex

    New chief for ATTThe Association of

    Taxation Technicians (ATT)has named Jane Ashton asits new Executive Director.Ashton (pictured) replacesAndrew Pickering, who is retiring after morethan 22 years at the ATT. Ashtons tax careerhas spanned over 30 years. She became amember of the ATT in 1993 and has served onthe ATT Council for 10 years.

    Show your workings, examiners pleadACCA examiners are calling on candidates

    to show their workings. The F7 examiner

    stressed in their December Examiners Reportthat: An appropriate level of referencedworkings are essential to allow markers tounderstand how answers have been arrived at.However, it was pointed out that bothexcessively long or no workings are just as bad.The F9 agreed that it is good examinationtechnique to show all workings as marks canbe gained for applying a correct method evenwhen numerical errors have been made.

    AAT qualification in MyanmarManagement Accounting School (MAS

    Education) has become the first trainingprovider approved by the AAT to deliver its

    qualification in Myanmar. AAT said that agradual lifting of government restrictions hasbeen taking place in Myanmar since 2010 andit is widely believed the countrys economy willimprove.

    Enhanced disclosureCompanies will need to provide information

    about changes in their financing liabilities aspart of improvements to disclosures announcedby the International Accounting StandardsBoard. The IASB has issued amendments to IAS 7 Statement of Cash Flows after requestsfrom investors for information that helps thembetter understand changes in a companys debt.

    In brief

    The ever-present old boys cluband male domination at seniorlevels are both seen as majorfactors for maleaccountants beingoffered betterprogressionopportunities in2016 than theirfemale colleagues.

    New researchfrom the AATfound that the experience of menand women in the profession variesdrastically in terms of pay,

    progression and prejudice. So while 60% of men think men

    and women are treated equally,when it comes to opportunityand remuneration this is theexperience of just 43%women.

    A real concern to the AATis the suggestion that thegender pay gap may beopening up rather thanclosing. In its most recent

    survey, men working full-time wereearning 18% more than women, anincrease on previous years, with the

    gap widening to 23% at seniorlevels.

    Nearly two-thirds of women atsenior levels told researchers theyhad experienced discrimination atwork because of their gender.

    AATs chief HR officer, Olivia Hill,felt that this new research showsthat men are much less aware ofissues relating to gender inequalitysimply because they arent asexposed to it. To help championpositive progress Hill explained thatthe AAT is launching a white paperto explore the reasons behindinequality issues in the financesector.

    To access the white paper, whichis called Making the finance sectoradd up for women, go towww.aat.org.uk/news


    Impersonator isexpelled by ACCAA Zambian ACCA student desperatefor money to pay exam costs hasbeen caught taking a MA2 CBEexam for an ACCA friend.Kasonogo Chilufa admitted toinputting the details of a fellowstudent, Chitalu Nambeya, on hisexam computer and taking theexam on her behalf while she wrotehis. And while he obtained 74% forher, she only managed 18%!

    An exam coordinator and aninvigilator became suspicious and,when questioned, Chilufa admittedhe had sat the exam for Nambeyaand that she had agreed to payhim. In mitigation he wrote: I regretever doing this and all I can ask foris for you to exercise mercy uponme. I will never cheat in an examagain because I have learned aharsh lesson today.

    The ACCA disciplinary committeeordered both students to beremoved from the student registerand to each pay costs to the ACCAof 1,382.50.

    The case is subject to appeal.


    HTFT Partnership turned three recently and they celebrated in style withstudents, employers and friends at the Hyatt Regency Birmingham

    Happy birthday!

    CIMAs advice on real lifeThe debate has been rumbling on CIMA noticeboards does using real-lifebusiness examples earn you marks in the case study? There appears to bemuch confusion out there, so PQ magazine asked CIMA for a definitiveanswer. In response, CIMA told us that case studies and marking schemesare written without any expectation of a candidate using real businessexamples. A spokesman said: Sometimes a candidate might feel he/she canillustrate a point more easily by giving an example, but others can make thesame point with equal effect (and credit) without giving an example.

    CIMA also said that most of those passing the case study do so withoutusing examples, but rely instead on the data given in the pre-seen or theadditional data in the exam itself.

    There is a worry that students may try to shoehorn in real examples thatthey have been pointed towards in their preparation. When they do so itsimply spoils the flow of any point the candidate is trying to make. It could beseen as irrelevant and show-offy!

    PQ April 16 p10 q9_pq sept 12 p08 09/03/2016 11:59 Page 10

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  • 12 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ news

    Ive been in the capital of Colombia,Bogota. At 8,300ft above sea level thefirst thing that hits you as you step offthe plane is the altitude and your ownshortness of breath. It took two daysto shake off the constant headachesof high altitude and adjust to theclimate. This does not bode well, asnext year I am attempting to climbKilimanjaro at just under 20,000ft.

    Bogota is an amazing modern cityand the people are incredibly friendly.In 2014, Colombias nationalaccountancy body INCP (InstitutoNacional de Contadores Publicos deColombia) agreed an MoU with ACCAto promote the training developmentand recognition of IFRS in Colombia(among other things). Last year wehelped a leading university (EAN)develop links with ACCA to boost thelocal accountancy profession.

    The profession is growing inColombia and the dividends of thepeace process (expected to culminatein an agreement this month betweenthe government and FARC rebels) willhopefully be a more peaceful andbusiness friendly environment.

    Returning to the UK was a trauma.A two-hour flight delay left me with 35minutes to transit in Miami (whichmeans going through immigration andcoming back in through securitychecks again). I managed it withliterally seconds to spare but myluggage did not. At the time of writingmy luggage is still making its wayback from Colombia. A transitexperience never to be repeated next time I fly direct from London!


    Colombialooksforward to a brighterfuture

    Professor Carl Lygo ischief executive of BPP

    There will be no changes to theCorporate Governance Code for thenext three years, says the FinancialReporting Councils CEO StephenHaddrill. He told a packedopen meeting that thiswas a committedpromise. The FRC wantsto embed all the recentchanges to codes andstandards rather than addeven more requirements.It will also seek to removeregulatory burdenswherever possible.

    Haddrill felt that there are stillissues around audit consistency andquality of audits that need to be

    Corporate Governance Code toremain unchanged, says FRC

    ACCA EXAM FEEDBACKFOR FIRST MARCH SETACCA students were sitting the first-ever March sitting as PQ magazinewent to press. It appears F8 sittersdisagreed about which was thehardest question on the paper was it Q3, Q4, Q5 or Q6? All werementioned as the hardest.

    ACCA PQs also seem to have anew skill to master rememberinghow they answered the MCQs! Onecandidate admitted to beingconcerned about leaving the hallwith their answers, as they worriedthat the invigilators may havethought they had walked in with theanswers too!

    The order of answers is anotherhot topic online. PQs are concernedif there are too many of the sameletters in their answers (this time itwas C) or in a row. I have changedone in the exam and now regret it,explained one student.

    Several P7 sitters admitted tospending too much time on Q1 thisspring. Many resitting the examclaimed the March test was muchharder than Decembers. Timemanagement issues werementioned by many as the bigchallenge of this paper. As onesitter put it: I just didnt have timeto write quality answers.

    The biggest complaint from F7sitters was the amount of work theyneeded to do to get just four marksin Q1. One sitter claimed they hadspent half-an-hour to get fourbloody marks.

    The key feedback about the P2exams was the confusing nature ofthe paper. There were too manythings to consider, explained onesitter. Go online to our ACCA study zonefor more feedback.

    addressed. In an effort to promoteconsistency in audit quality, he saidby 2019 the FRC wants at least90% of FTSE350 audits to require

    no more than limitedimprovements. That is abig ask, and a KPI thateveryone can now measurethe FRC against.

    The implementation ofthe audit regulations anddirective come into UK lawin the middle of June. Thiswill, Haddrill suggested,require changes to

    standards and its relationship withprofessional bodies. He expects theFRC to be inspecting a lot more

    audit firms; he ventured it could bearound 50 firms a year.

    The FRC has said that by 2019the audit profession alone will paythe full cost of audit regulation.

    Haddrill went on to stress thatthe FRC needs to be moretransparent about its work. Hebelieves it has the reputation as themost transparent audit regulator inthe world. And to this end it hasencouraged companies to tell itabout poor audits. It is, however,less transparent on the review ofcompany reports and accounts. Itwill now publish lists of who hasbeen looked at and where problemsare significant.

    PQ of the Year: Manuy Figueroa wasunable to pick up his award in persondue to illness, so we caught up withhim at work. Read our interview withhim in next months PQ. See pages 16and 17 for loads more awards stuff

    Stephen Haddrill

    The Institute of CharteredAccountants of Pakistan (ICAP) hasbeen awarded Associatemembership by CharteredAccountants Worldwide. ICAP is thesecond professional body to beadmitted to the organisation since itwas launched in February 2013.

    As an Associate member, ICAPjoins a group of globally-recognisedchartered accountancy bodies thatare committed to enhancing thevalue of the brand and theprofession. Its membership

    recognises the importance of thequalification in Pakistan and

    demonstrates ICAPs commitmentto the highest professional andethical standards.

    The rest of the CharteredAccountants Worldwide family arefounder members CharteredAccountants Australia and NewZealand; Chartered AccountantsIreland; ICAEW; ICAS; the SouthAfrican Institute of CharteredAccountants; and the Institute ofSingapore Chartered Accountants(ISCA), who joined as an Associatein June 2015.

    ICPA joins up to CA WorldwideKPMG is reportedly letting go some50 partners in a bid to improveperformance, and as a directrespond to changing clientdemands, reports Sky News.

    The total number of partners atKPMG is being reduced from 630 to580, as the firm invests in newtechnology and areas more likely todeliver better long-term benefits.

    Sky said a source had revealedthat there was board support insidethe firm for the changes. KPMG wasrecently overtaken by EY, making itthe smallest of the Big 4 firms.

    Partners exit

    PQ April 16 p12 q9 ccm.qxp_pq sept 12 p08 10/03/2016 11:52 Page 8

  • 013_PQ 0416_PQ 1209 000 10/03/2016 10:48 Page 7

  • 14 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ mental wellbeing

    PQ ACCA professional marks

    When Melissa couldnt cope afterher boyfriend dumped her justbefore crucial exams she turned toCABA for help. Heres her story

    Iwas in my early twenties and things werelooking good. I was in a training agreementand leading up to my final assessments.Obviously thats quite pressured, but I was livingin a nice flat and I was in a good relationship or so I thought.

    Id been friends with my boyfriend all the waythrough university, and then when I moved nearhim for work, things very quickly developed. Itwas my first real relationship and we were veryclose. We werent living together but we saweach other all the time. I trusted him completely.Then, suddenly, he just stopped calling. Fornearly four weeks I couldnt seem to get hold ofhim. I was so focused on my assessments, Itried not to think about it too much. I knew thathe was also in a very stressful situation at work,so I thought, lets just get through the examsand then well sort it out.

    Then, five days before my final assessmentdeadlines he dumped me. It was awful, I justdidnt expect it. He just said: Ive decided Idont want to be with you anymore. He alsosaid some very hurtful things that justdevastated me.

    I dont know how to explain it, but whenyouve really trusted someone like that, then outof the blue they just destroy you, it makes youfeel so vulnerable. Its the worst feeling in theworld. I had so many unanswered questions, butthat was it. He ended it and I basically neverheard from him again.

    I couldnt stop crying. I felt so betrayed. Ivenever felt so alone, and I knew I had to getthrough my assessments. I really didnt want totell work what had happened, I didnt want tounravel and end up losing my job.

    In the middle of the night, I was crying andcrying. I had a lovely flat-mate, but you cantwake people in the night about things like that. Ijust didnt want to be a burden to anyone. So Ithought, Im just going to call CABA. The advisorthat answered the phone was really good. Shetalked through some breathing exercises to calmme down and got me into a state where I wasable to sleep and go to work the next day. Shesaid I could call back whenever I needed, day or

    night. I have to say that the people at CABAmust be some of the most patient,understanding and kind people you canimagine.

    CABA arranged for me to have telephonecounselling I mostly did it in my lunch breaksby going into one of the meeting rooms.Counselling was crucial for me I really think Iwould have ended up signed-off work orhospitalised if I hadnt had that. Somehow itmakes you able to carry on, because you knowsomeone is there to talk to, that youll get achance to go over all the unfinished businessagain.

    I also found some of the advice the counsellorgave me really helpful like the idea of beingkind to yourself. I was so hung up on what Iddone wrong, what was wrong with me to makehim leave, but I see now that whatever it was, itwasnt to do with me. He must have problems ofhis own to treat someone so badly.

    I think if youre ever in trouble, you should callCABA. Theyre so good and helpful.

    I got through the exams and passed them,thankfully. Now Id say that, for the most part,Im okay. Its taken nearly a year, and I still getupset sometimes, but really Im fine. Work isgoing really well and Im about to becomequalified, which is a great feeling. And Ive learntfrom this. I think Ive become more aware ofmyself, my own emotions, and Im also moreresilient. I dont think I would react quite asbadly now, if it were to happen again.

    Ive been re-gaining my confidence, and justrecently a really nice guy asked me to go out.And Ive said yes. So I must be back on track,ready to try again and trust people. Go to www.caba.org.uk; the 24-hour supportline number is +44 (0) 1788 556 366



    HOW TO GET THOSE FOUR EASY MARKSSo where are the ACCA professionalmarks awarded? P1, P3, P4 & P5 all marks insection A, Q1. P2 two marks in each question insection B. P6 & P7 all four marks in either Q1or Q2 (section A).

    A lot of students mistakenly believeit is all about choosing the right format although this is part of it!

    The marks are available forintroducing the topic appropriately. Youmust also make convincing points withcounter-arguments, while using theappropriate tone for the audience. Themarkers will be looking for logical flowand structure, which draw togethermain themes of an argument into avalid set of conclusions.

    Do some planning. If each minute inthe exam hall is worth 1.8 marks thismeans you have seven minutes to gainthese professional marks.

    You must use the appropriate format if asked for a report or pressstatement then thats what you need toproduce. Dont write a letter when youhave been asked for a memo.

    And remember those exam basics:keep your sentences short andconcise; have short paragraphs andmake sure your writing is legible; makesure you leave plenty of white space;and make the marker stop and think:does this need a mark? Another no-nois writing down points as they comeinto your head make sure your pointsare logical.

    Headings and conclusions/recommendations are also key. Also,remember to put the question you areanswering at the top of each page.

    Finally, it seems the examiners dontlike slang or abbreviations. Rememberyou are a professional, so accordinglyuse professional language that reflectsyour status. PQ

    PQ Apr 16 p14 q9_Layout 1 09/03/2016 16:04 Page 2



  • 16 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ Awards 2016

    THE BEST AWARDS IN ACCOUNTANCYDELIVER ONCE AGAINLondons Caf de Paris was rocking for the PQ Awards 2016.More than 250 of the accountancy professions finest turnedup ready to party and to see who would be picking up a PQ.

    However, one winner was conspicuous by his absence ourPQ of the Year! Poor Manuy Figueroa was at home in bed withchickenpox, on his mums orders. Figueroa is an accounts co-ordinator at St. Marys Services Chartered CertifiedAccountants in south London.

    Someone who was there was our Distance Learning Studentof the Year, Mathura Atputhalingam. This Sri Lankan studentis taking a degree and studying the early ACCA papers at thesame time. She has a huge story to tell (all to be revealed ina future PQ) lets just say through it all education andlearning have been her saviour.

    Our NQ of the Year was Agchem Project ConsultingsSharon Harris. This CIMA member explains that if you hadtold her 16-year-old self that at the age of 52 she would be achartered accountant with an honours degree she would haveasked you what youd been drinking!

    Our Personality of the Year is the dapper Kevin Lloyd ofTraining 2000. Lloyd is a gregarious character who alsoanswers to wacky, quirky and funny!

    On the night, CIPFAs student network walked off with ourstudent body prize, and the ICAEW was named the 2016Accountancy Body of the Year.

    There were two new PQs up for grabs this time. BPP Livewon the Online College category and Kaplans School LeaverCampaign picked up the prize for Best Use of Social Media.

    THE INDEPENDENT JUDGING PANELDr Mary Bishop Director of Learning, ACCARachel Kellett Head of Product, AATShaun Robertson Director of Qualifications, ICAEWProfessor Prem Sikka Professor of accountancy at the

    University of Essex


    Kaplan Financial were double winners on the night: JuliaFalvey won Lecturer of the Year and it also picked up a PQfor Best Use of Social Media

    The PQ magazine Awards for 2016 are over, but we ended this year with a bang dont worry, no one had a heart attack!

    Who doesnt love posing in front of the sponsors logos pretending they havewon? Here are some of the AAT team living the dream

    Meet the crew: the ICAEW were propping up the bar, keeping cool aboutpicking up the Accountancy Body of the Year award

    pq april 16 p16-17 q9 ccm.qxp_Layout 1 09/03/2016 12:39 Page 2

  • PQ Magazine April 2016 17

    Awards 2016 PQ



    NQ OF THE YEARSharon Harris, Agchem Project Consulting

    ACCOUNTANCY COLLEGE OF THE YEARPUBLIC SECTOR University of South Wales professional accountancy tuition hub





    TRAINING MANAGER OF THE YEARDaphne Sanya, The Training Place

    BEST USE OF SOCIAL MEDIAKaplan School Leaver Campaign


    ACCOUNTANCY PERSONALITYKevin Lloyd, Training 2000

    EDITORS AWARDThe Great Minds Series, LSBF





    pq april 16 p16-17 q9 ccm.qxp_Layout 1 10/03/2016 11:52 Page 3

  • Ihad to buy a car recently to replacemy fondly missed orange Mini. Iwent to the car showroom (not aMini one Im afraid, my eldest daughterwouldnt allow it) and asked the price of afairly ordinary run-around. That one is460,000 the salesman informed me.WHAT!! Is it made of gold? I spluttered.No, he said, but my boss said that weneed to always charge a price to coverour costs and it cost us 8,000 toassemble that car and our rent for themonth is 450,000.

    I felt that a lesson in costing was inorder so I hope that the salesman inquestion is reading this article.

    CostingCosting is one of the principle roles ofmanagement accounting and we lookedat some basic costing terminology in thelast issue. In this article I want to think abit about the two most important costingapproaches; absorption costing andmarginal costing.

    When thinking about costing alwaysbear in mind that the ultimate purpose ofcosting is to identify the cost of producingeach unit of output. This cost can besummarised by pulling together a costcard to list and add up the various costsinvolved in production.

    Absorption costingI think of absorption costing as fullcosting because the cost card willinclude all production costs whether theyare variable or fixed.

    Variable costs are generally quite easyto deal with as they will tend to be relatedin some way to a single unit being made.So a single car will require a certainamount of direct materials (steel, wheels,seats etc), a certain amount of directlabour (the staff who assemble the car)and a certain amount of variableoverheads (perhaps the electricity used topower the machine that builds the car).

    Fixed costs are harder to deal withsince the cost incurred will not be relatedto individual units (by definition a fixedcost has nothing to do with the volume ofoutput) but are often related to periods oftime (this is true of rent, rates, electricity,telephone charges and most other utilitybills). What we need to do is to be spreadthe cost over the number of unitsproduced in the period covered to workout an effective cost per unit. This is whatwe mean by absorbing the cost. So oursalesman should have divided the

    18 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ AAT exams

    Gareth John compares thevarious methods of costing:this you must know


    cost. This means that the absorptioncosting cost card will always give a highercost per unit as it includes that extraelement of fixed cost. This means thatabsorption costing always gives a highervalue to inventory.

    Short-term versus long-termIt is often said that marginal costing ismore appropriate for use in the short-term, since if you are only looking atchanging production levels over a fewdays your fixed costs will not change socan be ignored. In our example (left), ifwe made a single extra car one day wewould incur extra variable costs of 120,so could in theory get away with charging125 to sell that car and we would stillcover our costs and make 5 (this is whatmarginal costing calls contribution).

    If, however, we charged 125 for everycar we sold during the whole month wewould make a loss of 4 per unit as wewould not be covering our fixed costs.This is why absorption costing is felt to bemore appropriate in the long-term. So inorder to make money (absorption costingcalls this profit) we would need to chargea regular price of more than 129 per car.

    The fact that marginal costing is morerelevant in the short term explains whywe use the concept of contribution invarious forms of short-term decisionmaking such as breakeven analysis andlimiting factor analysis. Gareth John is a tutor/director withFirst Intuition and helpsto manage their AATdistance learningprogramme. He was PQMagazine AccountancyLecturer of the Year in2011


    monthly rent cost of 450,000 by all ofthe cars made in the month.

    Marginal costingI think of marginal costing as variablecosting because the cost card will onlyinclude variable production costs. This isbecause the variable costs are the onlycosts that change if we produce just asingle extra car (this is what we mean byat the margin). Fixed costs such as rentwill not change as a result of that extraunit of production.

    Comparing costs cardsLets look at how our cost card for makinga car would compare using our twocosting methods:

    You will see that:1. Direct material costs are in both costcards as they are variable costs and aretherefore part of full cost.2. Direct labour costs are in both costcards as they are variable costs and aretherefore part of full cost.3. Variable overheads are in both costcards as they are variable costs and aretherefore part of full cost.4. Fixed overheads are only in theabsorption cost card as these are not avariable cost but are part of the full

    Absorption Marginal costing costing

    Direct costs Direct material (4 wheels at 20 per wheel) 80 80 Direct labour (2 hours at 15 per hour) 30 30Prime cost (the total of direct costs) 110 110Indirect costs Variable overhead (2 hours at 5 per hour) 10 10 Fixed overhead (450,000/50,000 cars made) 9 -

    Production cost 129 120

    PQ Apr 16 p18 q9_Layout 1 09/03/2016 16:05 Page 23

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  • 20 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ ICAEW spotlight

    Making your statementFinancial statement analysis is akey skill for ACA students. AnnePorcheron takes you through theexam and how to prepare for it

    The case study exam tests whethernearly qualified accountants canconduct a thorough valuation of acompanys financial performance andcommunicate their findings to a board ofdirectors.

    What you will be asked to doThe case study requirements typically ask you toevaluate the performance of a business for theyear, with a focus on revenue, profit and otherspecific areas. You will need to compare theresults to the prior year, and sometimes to KPIsor a forecast.

    Know your approachGood financial analysis will tell a story usingnumbers. Build up each point with: A financial fact eg revenue has increasedby 10% to 11m. Cause(s) eg due to the launch of a newproduct Your opinion eg which is impressive. A benchmark or context eg given industrygrowth of only 4%. Implication(s) eg but growth will be limitedin 2015 as the factory reaches productioncapacity.

    Analysing revenueConsider the overall revenue growth and thenthe individual areas of the business, noting anyrequirement to focus on a particular businessline. For causes of revenue growth or decline,make sure you think about price, volume, newcontracts, clients or products.

    Analysing gross profitStart with the movement in overall gross profit

    and margin and then drill down into the detail ofthe individual divisions gross profit margins.Take care not to repeat your revenue analysis focus on mix, margins and costs andefficiencies. Changes in revenue mix betweenbusiness streams are useful in explainingmovements in the overall company gross profitmargin; and you can use changes in productmix to explain the movement in gross margin foran individual business stream.

    Making adjustmentsSome recent case study exams have included arequirement to make adjustments to theaccounts and then appraise the results. Dontpanic. The background to the adjustments willbe something you know about, and this wont beas difficult as the problems youve been set inFinancial Accounting and Reporting or CorporateReporting. Follow the instructions and use youranalysis of the Advance Information to help youwork out the implications.

    Make those numbers talkRemember, this is financial statement analysis it has to include numbers. The best approach isto use a mix of absolute figures (s) andpercentages. A new division with 75% revenue

    growth sounds amazing, but if its onlycontributing 300,000 of the companys 15mtotal revenue its important to stress this is notthe core of the business.

    For case study exam resources go toicaew.com/examresources

    TOP TIPS .1. Read the requirement carefully. Covereverything youve been asked for. 2. Aim for a balanced answer. You wont writeexactly the same quantity for each sub-requirement, but you shouldnt have pages onrevenue and just a couple of paragraphs onprofit.3. Make your wider business issues count.Weave them into your analysis to explain orevaluate performance. In the commentary onRolling Stores (Nov 2014) the examiner said:Weaker candidates frequently used blandgeneralised comments such as the UK iscoming out of the recession without in anyway tying that statement to RS business activityto show its relevance, which meant that noreward was given.4. Get your opinion across. Identifying the maincause, or the best and worst performing divisionshows you are exercising your judgement. PQ

    This case concerns the situation where aperson purporting to have, but in fact lacking,authority to enter into a contract on behalf of acompany forms a contract with a third party.

    The claimants were architects, who hadentered into a contract with one Mr Kapoorrelating to the development of Buckhurst Park,a property in London. Kapoor and others hadformed the defendant company with a view todeveloping the property. Kapoor was a directorof the defendant company, the articles ofassociation of which allowed the company toappoint one of its four directors to the positionof managing director, who would thereby havethe authority to enter into contracts on behalf of

    the company. Kapoor was never appointedmanaging director, although he (successfully)led the claimants to believe that he was.

    Subsequently, it became apparent that thedevelopment would come to fruition. Theclaimants commenced proceedings for theiroutstanding fee.

    As Kapoors whereabouts were unknown, theclaimants were required to bring a claimagainst the company on the basis that Kapoorhad authority to act on its behalf.

    In the Court of Appeal, it was held thatalthough Kapoor had no actual authority(whether express or implied) to act on behalf ofthe company, because he had acted as if he

    were, and had been allowed to so act by theother directors, he thereby had apparent orostensible authority to act on behalf of thecompany.

    As the company had acquiesced in hisacting as if he were its managing director, itwas estopped from disputing that he did nothave authority to enter into contracts on thatbasis, and the company was therefore requiredto pay the claimants their fee. Ross Fletcher is an AIA Achieve e-tutor. The AIAAchieve team is producing a series of A Quick Look at articles throughout 2016.More articles can be found on the AIA website:www.aiaworldwide.com/a-quick-look-at.

    A QUICK LOOK AT... Freeman & Lockyer v Buckhurst Park Properties(Mangal) Ltd [1964] 2 QB 480

    pq Apr 16 p20 q9_Layout 1 09/03/2016 16:06 Page 2

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    021_PQ 0416_PQ 1209 000 08/03/2016 15:57 Page 7

  • 22 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ salary journals

    Make sense of salariesMary Ofili explains how asalary journal works, with thehelp of a practical example

    Journals are used to move fundsfrom one account to anotheraccount using a computerisedaccounting system. They are classed

    as a book of prime entry and are used torecord accounting transactions that donot frequently occur.

    Journals have to be set up incompliance with double entry and thismeans that the total of the debit sideentries should be the same as the total ofthe credit side entries.

    Salary journals are used in accounts tohelp ensure that the total employmentcost is captured and the totalemployment liability is also captured incompliance with the accrual concept andnot just accounting for each of thesewhen the payment is made.

    A salary journal could be as shown asbelow.

    The debit side shows the total cost acompany will incur for having staffmembers and the credit side shows thetotal liability what the company owesthe different people and organisations inregards to payroll payments.

    A simple illustration is you beingemployed and the company agreeing topay you a salary of 45,000; this doesntmean that the full 45,000 will be paid toyou by the end of a year under the PAYEsystem.

    It only means that the gross amountyou will be entitled to will be 45,000,but from this amount national insurance(NI), income tax (PAYE) and pensioncontributions will be deducted, and thenet of these amounts will be paid to youperiodically.

    The company will also incur additionalcosts to the 45,000 for employing you,which will be employers nationalinsurance contributions made on yourbehalf and employers pension also madeon your behalf (if any).

    These all add up to be costs thecompany will incur due to the fact thatthey have employed you.

    The net wages, after all relevantdeductions, will be paid to you, maybe atthe end of each month as may havebeen agreed; the NI & PAYE deductionswill have to be paid to HMRC and thepension deductions to the pensionprovider company.

    These amounts are paid to differentorganisations and people at differenttimes, as they all have different deadlinesfor the payments to be made.

    It will be wrong for the payments to berecognised as expenses at the time theyare being paid rather than the time theyare incurred because the NI & PAYEpayment, for example, is not due to bepaid until the month following the payrollmonth or on a quarterly basis. So if theJanuary payroll is run, the net wages willbe paid to staff in January, the pensionmay be paid in February and the NI andPAYE may be paid in February or at alater date.

    Where the salary journal is not used,such pension payment will be recognisedas an expense in February by debitingpension expense and crediting bank, butunder the accrual concept this will bewrong.

    It is clear that this is an expense whichrelates to January, but is being paid inFebruary or later, so the expense has tobe shown in January and not in anyother month when the payment mayhave been made.

    Where the salary journal is used, theexpense will be established in the

    pension expense account in the P&Laccount by debiting it and the liability willimmediately be established in a pensionliability account in the balance sheet bycrediting it (as seen above). When thepayment for pension is made, the liabilityhas now been cleared or reduced, so thiswill be posted as a bank payment bydebiting the pension liability account andcrediting bank.

    When the payroll is calculated, asalary journal should be set up usingthe payroll date:Dr: Gross salariesDr: National Insurance expenseaccountDr: Pension expense accountCr: Net wagesCr: PAYE & NICr: Pension liability account

    When staff are paid:Dr: Net wages Cr: BankThis will clear the amount being owedto the staff members because we aredebiting a liability account

    When HMRC are paid:Dr: PAYE & NI Cr: BankThis will clear the amount being owedto HMRC for staff NI, PAYE andEmployers NI

    When the pension amount is paid:Dr: Pension liabilityCr: BankThis will clear the amount being owedto the pension company for employeeand employer pension deductions

    An illustration .Take a look at this simple illustration: yousay I owe 10,000 for pension, which willbe made up of the employees pensiondeduction and the employers pensioncontribution.

    This means there is an existing liabilitybecause the company owes 10,000.This may because the payroll for Januarywas paid in February; you will see that asat the end of January we owed 10,000but this has now been paid, so theliability has been cleared.

    The salary journal establishes suchliability and when the payment is made

    this is posted against theset liability account toclear out any such liabilityowed to HMRC, pensionprovider or the staff. Mary Ofili is a directorof The Training Place


    DR CRDetails Amount Details AmountGross Salaries Net Wages Employers NI PAYE Employers Pension NI (employers & employees NI) Pension (employers & employees NI)


    Going into the P&L Account Going into the Balance Sheet

    Expenses are debit balances Liabilities are credit balances

    pq Apr 16 p22 q9_Layout 1 09/03/2016 16:06 Page 2

  • 23PQ Magazine April 2016

    ethics PQ

    Iremember, many years ago, my oldhistory teacher Mr Harvey telling uswith great passion about the story ofthe Greek army who, after 10 long yearsof besieging the city of Troy, sailed awayone night leaving behind a giganticwooden horse. The Trojans, thinking theyhad finally won, pulled the giant horseinto the city and began to celebrate. Whatthey didnt know was that hidden awayinside the horse was small group ofGreek warriors who descended underdarkness of night and routed the Trojansas they slept off their hangovers.

    Nowadays, of course, a Trojan virus isone which enters your computer andlurks, unseen, before causing (oftenirreparable) damage. But there is anotherway the story still lives on in modern life in the saying Beware Greeks bearinggifts, which means that we shouldalways be wary of anything which we getfor free, as there is often peril lurkingwithin.

    Objectivity compromised .Accountants are often in a position wherethey are offered something for nothing,and they should be wary of the dangerswhich can arise from accepting them.Clients may offer gifts or hospitality to anaccountant this could be anything froma bottle of wine at Christmas to lavishhospitality at sporting or cultural events orother expensive items. The accountantfaces a significant risk in accepting any ofthese, because it could be perceived byothers that they have been offered in anattempt to compromise their objectivity.

    Objectivity is one of the fivefundamental principles of the AATs Codeof Professional Ethics. It means that anaccountant must ensure that anydecision or judgement they make is doneso fairly and without bias or prejudice. Asignificant threat to this objectivity is self-interest, which arises when theaccountants judgement is influenced bythe knowledge that he, or someone closesuch as a relative, could benefit bymaking a particular decision.

    Even if the clients intentions in offeringgifts or hospitality are entirely honourable,there remains a risk that the accountantsjudgement could become coloured as aresult. At some point in the future, thatclient may want the accountant to dosomething unethical on their behalf such as understate income on a tax

    BEWARE GREEKSBEARING GIFTSTread carefully when it comes to acceptinghospitality from clients one day they mightwant something in return, says Neil Arnott

    However, at the other end of the scale,there is no doubt that accepting morevaluable items is a serious threat toindependence and objectivity.

    We only need to look at theexperiences of footballs world governingbody, FIFA, to see how gifts andhospitality are used to bribe and corrupt.FIFA had been the subject of allegationsof bribery, corruption, collusion andmoney laundering for some years, andinvestigations by the FBI and other crimeprevention agencies began in earnest in2015. It is alleged that corruption withinFIFA was rife, with many examples ofillegal payments being made in relation tosecuring contracts and marketing rightsfor global football events such as theWorld Cup.

    Clearly worded policy .So what should accountants do? Oneapproach would be to simply refuse anyoffers of gifts or hospitality even ones ofvery low value. By doing this, there couldbe no allegations of corruption, but thisapproach could be considered to be over-cautious by some and may even lead to aloss of business if clients are offended bya refusal to accept a small token.

    A practical solution is to have a clearlyworded policy which applies to all staffand which provides rules for which giftscan and cannot be accepted. A registercould also be kept, in which any gifts orhospitality offered and/or accepted arerecorded and reviewed periodically.Ultimately, however, it is usually a casefor the accountants professionaljudgement to determine whether a gift oroffer of hospitality could be construed asa threat to objectivity and if there is anydoubt the offer should be politelydeclined. To paraphrase another oldsaying always look a gift horse in themouth! Neil Arnott is a course tutor atPremier Training


    return and the accountant may bemore likely to do so because of the earliergifts and hospitality. Or, in anotherscenario, the client may want theaccountant to support their plans toexpand their business, which wouldseriously affect the long-term prospects ofa different client again, theaccountants objectivity in this may becompromised by the gifts or hospitalitythey have previously received.

    Most people would accept thataccepting simple gifts such as a bottle ofwine from a client are unlikely to seriouslyimpact on the accountants objectivity.

    PQ Apr 16 p23 q9_Layout 1 09/03/2016 16:08 Page 2

  • 24

    PQ CIOT winners list

    PQ Magazine April 2016


    The Chartered Institute of Taxation,the principal body in the UnitedKingdom concerned solely withtaxation, has announced the resultsfrom its examinations taken by1,277 candidates on 3 and 4November 2015.

    The Institute President, ChrisJones, commenting on the resultssaid: I would like to offer mycongratulations to all 987 of thecandidates who have madeprogress towards becoming aChartered Tax Adviser as a result ofpassing one or more papers at theNovember 2015 examination.Some 239 candidates have nowsuccessfully completed all of theCTA examinations and we verymuch look forward to thembecoming members of the Institutein the very near future.

    Full details of prizes and resultsare as follows: The Institute Medal for thecandidate with the best overallperformance attempting theAwareness Paper and two AdvisoryPapers (all at the same sitting): Themedal has been awarded to HarrietRevington of London, where she isemployed by Squire Patton Boggs. The Gilbert Burr Medal for thecandidate with the highest mark inthe Advisory Paper on Taxation ofOwner-Managed Businesses: Themedal has been awarded to PeterDavid Mills of Wimbledon, who isemployed by Menzies LLP inLeatherhead. The Spofforth Medal for thecandidate with the highest mark inthe Advisory Paper on InheritanceTax, Trusts & Estates: The medalhas been awarded to ChristopherBeeston of Werrington, who isemployed by Geens Ltd in Stoke-on-Trent. The Ronald Ison Medal for thecandidate with the highest mark inthe Advisory Paper on Taxation ofIndividuals: The medal has beenawarded to Sharlene Botterill ofGateshead, who is employed byRSM in Newcastle upon Tyne. The Wreford Voge Medal for thecandidate with the highest mark inthe Advisory Paper on VAT onCross-Border Transactions &Customs Duties: The medal hasbeen awarded to Jack Sims ofLeeds, where he is employed byBDO. The John Wood Medal for thecandidate with the highest mark in

    the Advisory Paper on AdvancedCorporation Tax: The medal hasbeen awarded to StuartChristopher Pibworth of London,where he is employed by SidleyAustin LLP. The Ian Walker Medal for thecandidate with the highest mark inthe Awareness Paper: The medalhas been jointly awarded to LauraWycherley of Stockport, who isemployed by Grant Thornton UKLLP in Manchester; and DavidOliver of Camberley, who isemployed by Crowe Clark WhitehillLLP in Reading. The Avery Jones Medal for thecandidate with the highest mark inthe Application and InteractionPaper: The medal has beenawarded to Sebastian Paul Yoe ofLondon, where he is employed byDeloitte. The LexisNexis Prize for thecandidate with the highest totalmarks in two Advisory Papers(taken at the same sitting): Theprize has been awarded to TesoniaMunder of West Drayton, who isemployed by Dixon WilsonChartered Accountants in London. The Wolters Kluwer Prize for thecandidate with the highestdistinction mark: The prize hasbeen awarded to ChristopherBeeston, winner of the SpofforthMedal. The Victor Durkacz Medal hasnot been awarded on this occasion.

    The Medals, Prizes and Distinctionsare awarded for each examinationpaper subject to the discretion ofCouncil and the attainment of asatisfactory standard, regardless of

    whether the examinationrequirements for membership havebeen met.

    Distinctions are awarded tocandidates for the following papers: James Bailey (Blick Rothenberg,London) (Advisory InheritanceTax, Trusts & Estates). Christopher Beeston (Geens Ltd,Stoke-on-Trent) (Advisory Inheritance Tax, Trusts & Estates). Tesonia Munder (Dixon WilsonChartered Accountants, London)(Advisory Inheritance Tax, Trusts& Estates).

    Stuart Christopher Pibworth(Sidley Austin LLP, London)(Advisory Advanced CorporationTax and Application andInteraction). Sebastian Paul Yoe (Deloitte LLP,London) (Application andInteraction).

    Distinctions are awarded tocandidates whose answers reflect anexceptional level in the AdvisoryPapers and the Application andInteraction Paper. Distinctions are notawarded for the Awareness Paper

    CIOT President Chris Jones

    Advisory Taxation of Owner-Managed Businesses: 227candidates passed this paper outof a total of 473 sitting theexamination. A pass rate of 48%. Advisory VAT on UK DomesticTransactions, IPT & SDLT: 21candidates passed this paper outof a total of 51 sitting theexamination. A pass rate of 41%. Advisory Inheritance Tax,Trusts & Estates: 41 candidatespassed this paper out of a total of58 sitting the examination,including three candidates beingawarded a distinction. A pass rateof 71%. Advisory Taxation ofIndividuals: 188 candidatespassed this paper out of a total of348 sitting the examination. Apass rate of 54%.

    Advisory VAT on Cross-BorderTransactions & Customs Duties:23 candidates passed this paperout of a total of 57 sitting theexamination. A pass rate of 40%. Advisory AdvancedCorporation Tax: 78 candidatespassed this paper out of a total of164 sitting the examinationincluding one candidate beingawarded a distinction. A pass rateof 48%. Awareness Paper: 375candidates passed this paper outof a total of 471 sitting theexamination. A pass rate of 80%. Application and InteractionPaper: 134 candidates passedthis paper out of a total of 380sitting the examination includingtwo candidates being awarded adistinction. A pass rate of 35%.

    Results by paper .

    PQ April 16 p24 q9_Layout 1 09/03/2016 16:08 Page 14

  • Success in Tax!

    Congratulations to all the CTA prize and distinction winners!

    The CTA is an efficient means to jump ahead of knowledge and expertise that

    might be gained by on-the-job experience. You could work on more complex

    higher chargeable tax work faster than colleagues who do not do the ATT or

    CTA tax qualifications.

    Find out more about how the CTA can help your career and to register as a

    student visit: www.tax.org.uk/workingintax

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    025_PQ 0416_PQ 1209 000 10/03/2016 11:57 Page 7

  • 26 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ exam planning

    A step too far?

    Students can take more control of theirown study pathway and ease theadministrative burden on trainingmanagers. The case study exams try to mirror timepressured work tasks, set by a linemanager, and so aim to demonstrateapplication to work-based scenarios.

    However, employers are advised toretain some structure and ownership ofthe study programme as deferral ratesare higher than ever. We are now seeingstudents deferring their exams at shortnotice with little penalty.

    While in certain circumstances this iscommendable, proficient exam standardstudents are choosing to defer and insome cases citing their own lack of self-belief as being the key reason fordeferral.

    Exam dates used to be compulsory;

    Educators must empowerstudents to think flexibly andtake control of their examjourney, says Mark Foley

    CIMAs decision to revolutioniseits assessment methods ishaving far-reachingconsequences for organisations withfinance study programmes. As otherinstitutes also move to more flexibleexamining models we examine theimpact this is having on students andemployers.

    What has changed? .Assessments are now more flexible. Thismeans students can now plan the timingof their exam dates for the CIMAobjective test papers so they, in effect,peak at the right time and maximise theirchances of passing their exams. WithACCA moving to four exam sittings a year,greater flexibility is being given to thestudent to take ownership of their examand study journey.

    CIMA describes this is as anopportunity for the student to take morecontrol of their studies. This supports theview of self-direction, personalresponsibility and accountability, all keycharacteristics of CIMA-qualifiedaccountants. This approach would allowCIMA students to develop thesebehaviours earlier in their studies andbecome well-rounded finance leaders onqualification. It also allows students theincentive of planning their studies aroundholiday, work and life-changingcommitments.

    The amount of flexibility provided bythe institutes should only be applauded,and already we are witnessing significantreal and meaningful benefits: Students can complete the exams inthree years and avoid studying duringcritical year-end routines. Students study can be staggered sothey are not all out of the office at thesame time.

    now it depends on a number of factorssuch as work and social commitments,desire and confidence. The consequenceof this has been a dramatic lengtheningin the time to qualification.

    The consequences .There are consequences to thesechanging patterns: Its more difficult to keep track ofprogress given there are fewer formalsittings. It disrupts staff scheduling and theiravailability for critical work tasks. It disrupts career and successionplanning. Having a prescribed exam dateprovided some inevitability whether youfelt ready or not, the exam was there forthe taking. Work and study become less integratedand, as a consequence, it becomesconfusing to know what knowledge isbeing imparted and when this can beapplied in the workplace. It takes longer for a student to qualifyand may affect their promotional andremunerative opportunities.

    Tips for employers .1. Utilise your training providersprogression planning calendars (whereavailable) to stay on top of exam results,course timings and anticipated studycompletion dates.2. Amend internal training study policiesoutlining a specific deferral authorisationprocess to ascertain the reasons for therequest and decide on whether itsappropriate to grant the deferral.3. Provide training contracts with aspecific recommended qualification date,which provides some rigidity and reducesthe number of times a student will defer. 4. Ensure exams are taken within twoweeks of revision course completion tomaximise the chances of exam success. 5. Encourage students to contact eithertheir account manager or tutor withregards to building confidence orperfecting technique and advising ondelivery methods for all learning styles. 6. Finally, its more important than everfor employer engagement on practiceassessment performance to identify moreobjectively if students are ready to sittheir exams and avoid unnecessarydeferral. Mark Foley FCCA is Head of KaplanBusiness Management


    pq Apr 16 p26 q9 ccm.qxp_Layout 1 10/03/2016 11:54 Page 2

  • Pause for a minute and think of yourfavourite meal. For us Brits, nothingtops a curry. When you get a reallygood one its obvious that the chef innatelyunderstands the chemical processes involved:when a marinade softens the meat, how to mixthe spices without overwhelming the overalldish, and when its appropriate to use a tandooroven.

    The act of cooking is the act of integration, theaward-winning curry dish is judged as a whole:the mix of flavours and textures, the deepunderstanding of how the ingredients combine.CIMAs case studies are very much the same;our students are asked to demonstrate theirunderstanding of how topics from all three pillars(Enterprise, Performance and Financial) interactand depend upon each other, forming a key partof their analysis and recommendations.

    Integration is therefore a key component of ananswer in CIMAs case study exams. In fact, ourexaminers state that all good answers areautomatically integrated, that the tasksthemselves ensures that a good answer has noalternative but to contain integrated content.

    Deep understanding .If integration is automatically produced in a goodcase study answer, why does CIMA award marksfor integration? The reason for this is that wewant CIMA qualified management accountantsto be world class, and to do that they need todemonstrate a deep understanding of howsubjects interrelate so that they can bring thisknowledge and insight to the workplace.Integration marks are therefore a very clearmessage to students, shaping their studies,increasing their understanding and, ultimately,their employability.

    So what do we mean by integration? TheCIMA syllabus has three levels with threesubjects for each level. Integration existsbetween subjects and between topics within thesubject. Taking an example from the Operationallevel, costing accounting systems (P1A) canaffect the following: The extent to which the finance functionsupports/provides costing information (E1B). How technology/big data can assist withcosting and preparation of reports (E1C). How the operations are managed will affectthe costs and cost drivers (E1D). Both marketing and costing will need to beconsidered together, to ensure strategic match(E1E). The reporting of costs will have to be in linewith relevant standards (F1A). Accurate costing information will be requiredfor the accounts (F1B). Accurate short-term cash forecasts willdepend on correct costing information (F1C). Costs are one factor that will have an eventualeffect on taxation (F1D).

    A holistic, integrated response in a case studyexam requires students to apply anddemonstrate their deep understanding of howthe components of the syllabus combine andinteract within an unfamiliar situation set out inthe case study exam. This is similar to a chef ina cookery competition being asked to makesomething they have never cooked before. Thewinner of the competition is always the personwho can best apply their technical knowledgeand previous experience to this new challenge.

    So, what can you do to prepare to earn theintegration marks available in a CIMA case studyexam?

    CIMA case studies simulate a scenario wherethe candidate is working within an organisation,dealing with a situation they have beenpresented by a colleague. The task at hand is torespond to that situation, using managementaccounting, to add to the understanding of yourcolleague.

    In business, you need to consider the reasonbehind your colleague setting you the task; theissues or risks facing the organisation aroundthe situation that is being addressed; the likelyimplications of your feedback on colleagues orother stakeholders; and the managementaccounting techniques that will help resolve thesituation. If you do this before committing to aresponse, you are likely to present a reply thatraises the right points at the right time anddelivers a free-flowing, coherent, integratedanswer.

    For example, variant 2 of the November 2015

    management case study begins by asking thecandidate to advise a marketing director on achoice for which she has prepared two presentvalue calculations. Those calculations areprovided in detail, as are a few pieces ofbackground information about staffing,technology, capacities and other risk factors.

    Poor integration marks .A poorly integrated response might have a fewparagraphs explaining, in text book fashion, theneed to apply annualised equivalents for thedecision making in the task. There might beanother few paragraphs talking knowledgeablyabout risk and the importance of incorporatingrisk into decision making. Two separate piles ofingredients, exquisitely prepared but at differentends of the table.

    To earn integration marks, the sameknowledge and understanding could be applied,but this time by using the information about thecash flows alongside the factors from the taskwhich indicate risk. For instance, annualisedequivalents assume that a contract will berenewed; were not told whether there is anyguarantee that the contract will be renewed sowe may have to use different costs of capital,depending on the extent of that risk.

    The case study answer is a blended dish,incorporating the raw ingredients but mucheasier to digest. Thanks to CIMAs Peter Stewart, Director ofLearning, and Stephen Flatman, Director ofExaminations, for this article



    CIMA integrataion marks PQ

    PQ Magazine April 2016

    THE SPICE OF LIFELike a good chef, CIMA case study students need to blend their knowledge to produce the perfect answer

    PQ Apr 16 p27 q9_Layout 1 09/03/2016 16:09 Page 14

  • 28 PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ learning tips

    Whats your learning style?

    going to get the best results for you.There doesnt seem much point, to me atleast, of spending hours and hourscreating lovely colourful mindmaps if youare a kinesthetic learner.

    So what learning style are you? Thereisnt enough space here to conduct a fullassessment, but if you log onto http://vark-learn.com/the-vark-questionnaire andthere are others out there you canparticipate in an online test to help youunderstand your learning style.

    It is important when completing and

    James Taylor explains how weall learn in different ways andwhy you should find out whatworks best for you

    Identifying and embracing yourlearning style can make you a moreeffective studier, and help you getmore out of your study time.

    When we talk about individual learningstyles we are referring to how you (thestudent) absorbs, processes,comprehends and retains information and everybody is different. For example,when learning about IAS 37 some studentsunderstand by following the verbalinstructions (teachings) of their tutor, whileothers like to read up and jump straightinto questions learning by doing.

    It is widely accepted that studentlearning styles fall into three categories:visual learners, auditory learners andkinesthetic learners.

    These learning styles are found withineducational theorist Neil Flemings VARKModel of Student Learning. VARK is anacronym that refers to the four types oflearning styles: visual; auditory;reading/writing preference; andkinesthetic (see diagram).

    I mentioned before that everyone isdifferent. It is important for you tounderstand your own learning style, sothat you can focus on using tools that are

    analysing these types of tests toremember that life is multimodal: thereare no hard boundaries and you may bea mixture of the four learning stylemodes.

    The VARK questionnaire, and otheronline tests, will however show you yourmain learning style preference.

    In next months PQ Ill be setting outsome good learning and revision tipsagainst each learning style. James Taylor is a director at HTFTPartnership


    Sorted, thanks topqjobs.co.uk

    PQ jobs pqjobs.co.uk

    pq April 16 p28 q9 ccm.qxp_Layout 1 10/03/2016 11:55 Page 2

  • Beckers Interactive eBook

    Beckers Interactive eBook is one of the most technically

    advanced ACCA preparation tools available. The interactive eBook

    is an online resource that merges on page content, video presentation,

    tutor notes and audio instruction.

    Beckers Interactive eBook brings topics to life

    by combining syllabus learning points with interactive technology

    to take advantage of approximately 15 hours of audio and video lectures

    per paper from our expert authors and tutors,

    including interactive question practise,

    video introductions and tutor annotations.

    Beckers interactive eBook provides students the exibility

    and freedom to study whenever and wherever

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    029_PQ 0416_PQ 1209 000 10/03/2016 10:48 Page 7

  • Karen Young on howimproving yourcommunication skills will

    help you get ahead in your career

    You can no longer rely purely on examsuccess and technical skills to getahead in your career as an accountant.Employers want you to have strong soft skillsand effective workplace communication isparticularly important whatever your careerambition. The Hays Accountancy & FinanceCapability Gap report found that employers ratecommunication as the most important skill fortheir organisations future success. Sodeveloping your communication skills is a mustbefore you take the next step in your career.

    Here are ways to master communication inthe workplace, if this isnt yet your strong point:Listen: Listen to others. Communication is atwo-way process so by listening to others youcan learn, understand and resolve any conflicts.Body language: Non-verbal communication hasby far the greatest impact on how you areperceived, much more than tone of voice andwhat you actually say. Stay relaxed and aware ofyour body positioning; dont adopt defensivestances such as crossing arms or legs,particularly in an interview.Keep it cool and confident: Its important not totry and resolve a serious situation whenovercome with stress or frustration, in thesesituations things can be misinterpreted. Its goodto apply this logic to emails too. If you havewritten something in the heat of the momentthat you might later regret to a colleague,manager or client, save it as a draft, and reviewit at a later date before you press send. Face-to-face is best: Dont email your colleaguenext to you, speak to them and dont dismiss theimportance of face-to-face time with yourmanager or clients. Emails can often bemisconstrued, so communicating in person,where your tone of voice can be heard and your

    body language can be seen is always best andcan leave a lasting positive impact. Businessleaders, including my own CEO, agree that face-to-face is the best form of communication.Time it right: You need to focus and plan inorder to communicate well in the workplace.Pick the right moment for the right situation. Forexample, cornering your boss in the officekitchen to ask for a pay rise isnt the right timeor place. If you want to discuss pay, booktime in with your manager so youdont catch them unawareand youll both be able toprepare properly to makethe most out of theconversation. And do your marketresearch first as this will help you

    make it less emotive.Know your audience: Knowyour audience and actaccordingly. Think about whoyou are communicating withand the best way for them tounderstand the information. Forexample, the way youcommunicate with yourcolleagues may be different tothe way you communicate withyour manager or clients, as wellas what and how youcommunicate.

    Effective communication iscrucial to your career success,from succeeding at a jobinterview, to delivering financialreports to stakeholders. If youcan master communication inthe workplace this will help you

    stand out in the office and ensure you hold theskills that employers are looking for.

    For further information and to find out whatyoure worth visit salaryguide.hays.co.uk Karen Young, Director, Hays Accountancyand Finance

    About Hays UK Salary and Recruiting Trends 2016Data compiled using data gathered during2015 from Hays offices across the UK, based

    on job listings, job offers and candidateregistrations. Survey responses fromover 20,000 employers andemployees from organisations of allsizes throughout the UK. Go towww.salaryguide.hays.co.uk



    PQ careers

    PQ Magazine April 2016


    First Intuition has opened up at 1 Aire Street,Leeds LS1 4PR, in the heart ofcity, close to the railway station.To celebrate it is offering 10students the chance to taste justhow FI can make the difference.Yes, we have five ACCA classroomcourses and five CIMA courses togive away, totally free!

    The FI team promises: Never to cancel a course ever! The same tutor throughout yourcourse.


    We have joined forces with First IntuitionLeeds to offer PQ readers the chance to winone of five CIMA and five ACCA courses

    A question bank on the first day ofyour tuition course. Free tea and coffee.

    For more information contactleeds@fi.co.uk or call 0113 4677770.

    To enter our great giveaway simplyemail graham@pqaccountant.comwith your name and contact number,heading up your email First IntuitionLeeds. Deadline for entries is 4 April2016.

    * PQ magazines terms and conditions apply

    PQ Apr 16 p30 q9_Layout 1 09/03/2016 12:04 Page 14

  • PQ Magazine April 2016

    careers PQ


    The Negotiation Book: YourDefinitive Guide to SuccessfulNegotiating, by Steve Gates(Capstone, 12.99)

    The amount of time mostpeople actually spendnegotiating is very small in thecontext of their whole job, andyet the consequences of theirperformance during negotiationswill often dictate howsuccessful they are.

    The key, according to authorSteve Gates, is not tounderestimate the rolenegotiation plays in your life. Ashe explains, it can represent thedifference between viability andinsolvency, profit making andloss, growth or decline; such isthe power of its outcome.

    Gates wants to help youbecome the complete skilled

    negotiator, but warns againstletting your ego andcompetitiveness fuel your needto win. Negotiating agreementsshould not be about winning;they should be about securingthe best value.

    He also talks about beingcomfortable with beinguncomfortable. There will bepressure and tension, and howyou deal with this can affect theoutcome.

    Oh, and never forget thateveryone likes a bargain (look atBlack Friday).

    Another key skillset you needto master is recognising whenthe change from selling tonegotiating has taken place.Gates wants you to be honestwith yourself, too. How did youcope with the uncomfortableand how did your personal

    perspectives affectthe deal?

    But perhaps hisbest advice is thatin negotiationsthere are no rules.As he said: There is no right,no wrong, no good, and no badway to negotiate. Only thatwhich is appropriate to yourcircumstances.

    Power and where it liesshould not be underestimated,either. History teaches us thatthose with power will at somepoint seek to exercise it. So it isvital to understand where thebalance is. A lot of this willdependent on the power of thebrands and relative size of bothparties. Time and circumstancesalso offer great power levers.PQ rating 4/5 Everyone needs tomaster the art of negotiation.

    Be an early bird Going to a job interview or

    taking an exam in the morningreally increases your chances ofsuccess, claim scientists. Thelonger the day goes on the worseyour performance becomes.Danish researchers found thatthere were significant differencesin simple brain power tests andcognitive tests. So an exam takenat 3pm was likely to have anaverage score of 5.4% worsethan the same exam at 9am. Thereport said: As the day wears onstudents become increasinglyfatigued and consequently morelikely to underperform on astandardised test.

    Rather clean the house?New research from Robert

    Half reveals UK employees aremuch less likely to ask for asalary rise than those in otherparts of the world. Just over half(54%) plan to request a rise,compared with 77% of workers inFrance, 78% in Germany and81% in Brazil. Instead of makingthe case for a pay increase,employees said they would rather

    clean the house (24%), look for anew job (18%) and even go tothe dentist (6%).

    A handy interview tip If you want to do well in an

    interview check out which handthe interviewer writes with and siton that side of the desk. Newresearch claims that ourunconscious biases are heavilyinfluenced by the hand we use towrite, and that means we aredrawn to objects and people whoare positioned on that side.Handedness and desire may besomething you have to thinkabout as you take your seat in theinterview room.

    In brief

    The PQ Book Club: books you should read

    Shaun Robertson is the institutes Director, Qualifications, based in London, and hasworked there for 10 years. He has a B.Com from Edinburgh University. Sean has beenin two episodes of TOWIE and sang on a Josh Groban video with over 2.5 million hits!

    Life at the ICAEW

    What time does your alarmclock go off on a workingday? 7-ish.Whats the first thing you dowhen you get to your desk?Talk to the neighbours.Whats on your desk? I do likea clear deskWhats the best thing aboutwhere you work? The people Iwork with.Wheres your favourite placeto go for lunch? Dennys.What (or who) can you seewhen you sit at your desk? Apicture of Lochgelly.

    Which websites are yourfavourites and why? Hotelbooking sites I love a trip.Which websites do you usefor work? Travel booking;you need to meet people.How many hours a weekdo you spend inmeetings? As much isneeded to get things done.What time do you leavethe office? 6-7pm.How do you relax? Sing ina choir www.popchoir.com.Whats your favourite tipple?Full bodied red.

    How often do you take workhome with you? A little onlywhen needed.What is your favourite TV

    programme? Tenko.Summer or winter?Summer.Pub or club? Pub.Who is your hero?Agnetha Fltskog.If you had a timemachine, where

    would you go? March 4 1890.If you hadnt chosenaccountancy, where mightyou be right now? California.

    social mediaROUND-UP

    Forget the Brits, BAFTAS and Oscars #PQAWARDS2016 was the place to beseen on twitter as we unveiled thewinners of the PQ magazine awards atthe Caf de Paris. We had Irelandsseventh biggest hip hop actAbandoman tearing up the stage, beforeeditor Graham Hambly unveiled thewinners. Lots of winners and finalistlined up to take their picture in front ofour awards board. Among them wasColchester Institutes Kay Fletcher whowas nominated for the Public SectorLecture of the Year (see picture).

    On a recent visit to the TrainingPlace we also found what winners dowith their awards! Our TrainingManager/Mentor of the Year is DaphneSanya, and she keeps her award in herin tray (below). Colleagues claim sheis so proud she polishes it every day.

    CIMA integration marks and the useof real-life examples have been hottopics on LinkedIn and Facebookpages. It appears one provider hadbeen suggesting that real-life businessexamples will get you marks! Well, thatmight have been true under the old T4case study, but we got a definitiveanswer from CIMA (see page 10).

    One top ACCA tutor worth followingon Facebook is Tom Clendon. Heposted: By all accounts the March P2exam was a toughie. Q1 was astatement of financial position with amixed structure. Standards examinedincluded a bit of this and a bit of that,with nothing major jumping out. I havenot seen the paper yet and it will not beofficially published. Impairment offinancial assets expected creditlosses came up. When it is tough foreveryone it is important that you havewritten something down, had a go andso put yourself in the mix when amarker is thinking about the benefit ofthe doubt. Lets see come results.

    PQ April 16 p31 q9_pq oct07-p31 09/03/2016 16:12 Page 31

  • YOUR PATH TO A FULFILLING CAREERYou can no longer rely on exam success and technical skills

    to get ahead in your career as an accountant. Employers

    want you to have strong soft skills and effective workplace

    communication is particularly important whatever your

    career ambition.

    At Hays, we specialise in recruiting for part-qualied

    accountants and have a number of expert consultants who

    can advise you on developing and showcasing your skills

    and experience to get you ahead in your nance career.

    To nd out about the range of opportunities we can

    offer you and be put in touch with an expert consultant,

    email karen.young@hays.com or call 07834 260029.

    Alternatively, you can visit us online.


    About you


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  • PQ Magazine April 2016

    PQ got a story, funny or serious, you want to share? Email graham@pqaccountant.com

    W E V E G O T T H E L O T

    Terms and conditions: One entry per giveaway please. You must send your name and address to be entered for the draw. All giveaway entries must bereceived by Friday 8 April. The main draw will take place on Monday 11 April 2016.


    WHERES THE MONEY GONE?Abandoman were the star turn at this years PQ awards. Theyhad the audience rocking with their clever rapping. This top acthas supported Ed Sheeran and played Glasonbury, Reading andLeeds festivals, as well as Bestival and the Edinburgh Fringe. Atone point in their show our audience was asked to hold upwhats in your pocket. Apart from some personal medication,the big question is what happened to Kens 10 note? Itchanged hands several times and then disappeared! Lets hopeit wasnt laundered, because we dont think he got it back!

    WHAT WOULD YOU DO? We have a new Personality of the Year!Our 2016 winner was none other thanKevin Lloyd of Training 2000, who has setthe bar high for next year. Would you beprepared to drive around in an open topcar waving an AAT banner around? Wehave proof that Kevin does! Hes also areally natty dresser too, and won our bestdressed man on the night.

    The Indian army in Bihar recently tookdrastic steps to stop cheating (and savetime frisking so many people) by makingcandidates at a recruitment day strip totheir pants to take a written exam. Therewas also a conspicuous lack of desks asthe men sat their test cross-legged in afield using their thighs to balance thepaper! In another part of India, Gujarat,authorities blocked mobile internetservices in cities and towns that wereholding entrance exams for publicservice jobs.


    Who doesnt like a PQ magazine prize!One of our Annual Bumper Quizwinners, Izabela Kaczynska, recentlysent us a great picture of how she usesher Beats Pill. Great to see even thedogs seem grateful!

    THE THIFTYAUDITOREver thought aboutditching shampoo forhome-made olive oilsoap and brushingyour teeth withbicarbonate of soda?Former auditor ZoeMorrison says she hassaved 11,000 aftercompleting a year ofeco-challenges. Sheleft a comfortable jobas an internal auditorfor the NHS tobecome an eco-savingblogger. She alsomade 3,500 income,from among othersthings her solarpanels. You can findMorrisons blog on EcoThrifty Living.

    THE OTHER OSCARSRACISM ROWOscars host Chris Rock got himself inhot water on Oscars night forintroducing three Asian children as hisaccountants. The inference, ofcourse, is that all Asians are good atmaths! The group Asian AmericanAdvancing Justice said: Last nightsceremony, and particularly the jokeinvolving Asian children expose oneof the failings of how we talk aboutrace in America: race relations are nota black-white binary.

    CHECK YOUR SPELLING!PQ magazine was contacted by a topACCA tutor who was grateful for ourinformative piece on how to get thoseoften elusive ACCA professional marks

    (there arefour on offerin eachexam). Veryuseful, hesaid.However, hisP5 classbrightened

    up when they read our last sentence.We explained that the examinerdoesnt like slags, when we meant tosay slang! Oh, how they laughed wehave changed the advice now, but areglad we could help.

    TEST YOUR BRAINWe have a pack of three IQ and aptitude books written byPhilip Carter to give away (worth just under 30). IQ testsare now routinely employed by recruiters and these bookswill help you develop better powers of calculation andlogical reasoning. By studying the different types of test, andrecognising the different types of question, you can improve

    your test scores and increase your IQ rating.We are giving away three sets of the IQ books in this months giveaway.All you have to do is send your name and address tograham@pqaccountant.com. Head up your email Test Your IQ.

    A BUMPER PACKWe are giving you the chance to read some of the greatbooks we have taken a look at in our PQ Book ClubReviews. That means we have The Joy of Tax and asigned copy of Work it Out with a Pencil to give awaythis month. You can add Dark Pools: The rise of AItrading machines and the looming threat to Wall Street,plus the wonderful Game of Thrones on Business and

    Max Your Memory. Thats over 65 worth of books.Just email graham@pqaccountant.com along with your name andaddress. Head up your email Bumper pack.

    pq apr 16 fun page q9_pq aug 13 fun 09/03/2016 12:06 Page 42

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