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BDO ends 2019 on a high


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The BDO story is an amazing one. Its founders’ vision was to look beyond their horizons and establish an outstanding global organisation, built upon special people. 

As a result, BDO in 2019 employed more than 88,000 people in 167 countries and territories, who worked together to generate revenues of $ 9.6 billion reporting a 10.1% growth from the previous year (at constant exchange rates). 

BDO Firms in the Asia Pacific region have contributed significantly towards this growth and is leaving its footprint in the Region as a group of dynamic firms that are working cohesively with each other. 

The main service lines within the firm are audit and assurance, advisory and business services and outsourcing, with audit and assurance being the highest income earner. 

Commenting on what drives them as leaders, this is what the leadership team said:

“I think it’s important to realise that leadership is about influence – not authority: good leaders inspire others to bring about true change in an organisation,” said BDO Global CEO Keith Farlinger.

“The ability to lead change is a critical success factor in business today. In today’s complex world, those who are willing to adapt to change and see the opportunities will survive,” added BDO Canada CEO Pat Kramer.

“Who we are as leaders has a significant impact on our practice. Leadership is the way to get where we need to go: it’s about setting a clear direction and being willing to adapt to change,” said BDO Sri Lanka Managing Partner Sujeewa Rajapakse.

People at BDO emphasise that they are not only auditors, or simply tax consultants but that they are critical thinkers with a mindset that gets the job done. They feel that through their insights into business, they are able to provide the correct solutions by bringing together the right experts. 

At BDO, they feel that what they are doing and how they are doing it is constantly changing. They are driven by the idea that BDO needs to support their clients to seize each opportunity now – because tomorrow will be too late. 

BDO is evolving their services model to align with the growing client preference for digital channels and functionality and have invested heavily in building and delivering market-leading digital assets for their firms and clients. For example, BDO in Russia has a unique position in the market. 

They have embraced the disruption facing their clients and are delivering novel and breakthrough projects through their System Integration and Business Transformation practices. Their clients include more than half of the 100 largest Russian companies, including global leaders within the oil and gas, metals and mining and finance industries.

In India, BDO is delivering automation, analytics and e-learning for clients across a number of industries while continuing to lead with their tax technology offerings: as evidenced in the BDO Enable services suite, which includes Analytics, EWB, GSP and GST. These are a few success stories on how BDO is adapting their service offering to keep abreast with the clients’ demands. 

BDO Global is also very conscious about sustainability and has started the BDO Green initiative. One of BDO Green’s central goals is to drastically reduce paper consumption by hosting green meetings and conferences. Therefore, when BDO USA released its updated International Directory last year, not a single copy was printed, and the entire directory was released electronically. This change saves tens of thousands of pages. Recent Firm conferences have cut paper consumption by about 95%, simply by converting paper participant guides to event apps. 

The culture at BDO is people oriented, as it is believed that their people are the greatest assets for the Firm. BDO is always trying to make it a better place to work for all its employees and to create an environment that is as flexible and supportive as it is professionally rewarding. As a result of these efforts, BDO has been honoured with awards in numerous categories both locally and internationally. A few of the awards won during 2019 are:

• 2019 NAFE Top Companies for Executive Women, Firm Wide, National Association for Female Executives

• 50 Best Internships, Firm Wide, Vault.com

• Fifth Best Firm to Work for Among All National Accounting Firms, Firm Wide, Vault Accounting 50

• Working Mother 100 Best Companies for Dads, Firm Wide, Working Mother Magazine

BDO during the year 2019 spelt out the reason for its existence, their “why: “People helping people achieve their dreams”. It is what defines them. It is why BDO is unique. In a business powered by people and relationships, the WHY helps the clients in choosing to work with BDO and encourages the people working at BDO to be a part of a greater purpose. It is an initiative to re-invent the service delivery across all firms. To bring a people-centred approach to work done in the workplace and even outside the workplace.

In recognition on the BDO Firms across the firm embracing the BDO Why, the Global office organised the Dreamcatcher Awards for 2019. This was an opportunity for all BDO Firms across the world to showcase what they have achieved in specific workstreams. 

The BDO Sri Lanka office was declared the winner in the workstream “Leaders in our Markets” for their outstanding project on creating leadership in the markets/business sectors in which they were operating in.  Their project identified the key industries in which their clients are operating and appointed core expert groups for each of such identified sectors. 

These groups were tasked to proactively engage with clients in each sector to give them better insights on how to improve their businesses. The BDO Sri Lanka project on innovation was also featured in the BDO network newsletter. This project involved using technology to reduce costs and improve efficiency within the Firm. 

The BDO Firm in Sri Lanka is headed by Sujeewa Rajapakse, a dynamic leader who is well respected in business circles as a senior Chartered Accountant and a past president of the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Sri Lanka. 

When asked about his plans for the future of BDO in Sri Lanka, he stated that he was very happy with the team of professionals currently working for BDO and that he hopes to expand the service offerings to be in line with the ever changing demands of the clients and in keeping with the high technical standards required to be maintained as a global firm. 

He noted that his vision for the coming years is for the Firm to consolidate its position in the market as a professional service provider while looking at new business opportunities. BDO Sri Lanka has integrated service teams, active partner involvement and open and clear communication, to ensure our clients peace of mind. 

BDO Sri Lanka also provides financial advisory and consultancy services, payroll services, company secretarial services and other related services through its affiliates. The clients are offered a spectrum of services under the brand of BDO, where quality and reliability are ensured. These service lines also contribute towards BDO Sri Lanka being a premier professional service provider to clients both in Sri Lanka and overseas. 

BDO provides all its people and all its clients with opportunities, no matter in which country, service line or industry it is operating. It is their strong and dynamic client base and its committed and dedicated people that make BDO a successful professional services business. BDO has been the fastest growing organisation in the profession for the last 10 years and the continued and accelerating growth rate is witness to its exceptional client service. 


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