Most firms see focusing on specialist sectors as a key strategic opportunity for them in the next two to three years, this week’s Smith Williamson survey shows.
A full 59% identified it as a top area of opportunity.
Meanwhile, almost one in two identified investing in business development and marketing as a key opportunity for their firm.
This ranked as the highest opportunity by 56% of regional firms. Almost one in two firms (44%) recognised investment in technology as important for their firms.
Many firms continue to see expanding their service offering as a key tenet of their strategy to retain client work (42%).
For top 20 firms, lateral hires continue to be seen as the major opportunity for their firms (80%), while 73% of these firms also see a focus on specialist sectors as a key strategy.
While mergers and acquisitions were off the agenda for top 20 firms in 2020 (7%), it is now seen as a strategic option for one in three of these firms.
'Big Four' accountancy firms
One in three top 20 firms have identified new competition from international and UK law firms, plus the ‘Big Four’ accounting firms, as a key issue for them into the future.
Downward pressure on fees (42%) is a key concern for non-top 20 firms in Dublin and regional firms in the survey.
Managing succession (26%) also has been referenced as a key challenge for these firms.