Taking Small Businesses Global

Jonathan Fryer, Accounting and Payroll Outsourcing Practice Partner, expresses his views on how we support multinational engagements, how we stay ahead of the curve, and the concept of “Click every button – learn everything”.

Keywords: Mazars, Thailand, Xero, Technology, Omise

Jonathan Fryer moved to Asia from the UK 10 years ago. He soon joined Mazars, as the business was entering the Thai market. At this time, the Bangkok-based office has grown to a 200-strong team.

“Building a strong team has been the key to our success,” says Jonathan. “Our managers have been with us for years, and have grown up with our way of working. The younger generation joining us is learning our way of doing things from the get-go.”

And Jonathan says that Mazars in Thailand does have a certain way of doing things. “We offer a different service,” says Jonathan. “From how we present ourselves to how we present our reports.”

Supporting multinational engagements

Mazars Thailand is part of the Mazars Group, a global partnership which provides global audit, accounting, legal, and consulting, employing more than 18,000 professionals in 79 countries through member firms. Clients range from local start-ups to global multinational companies, but the common goal at Mazars is multinational engagements.

“Our goal is to support and drive cross-border growth for our clients,” says Jonathan. “We can do this because we ourselves operate on a truly global model.”

Traditional accounting firms in Thailand often produce only one annual report, and this is often a few months after the year-end. Others focus only on tax compliance.

Mazars Thailand has focused on breaking this traditional paper-based model. “We try to innovate and use technology to provide new services; for example, hybrid models for clients based in more than one location using the same ledger. Xero lets us do this,” says Jonathan.

Staying ahead of the curve

Jonathan says many local firms see accounting as something that has to be done just for compliance purposes. “But the market is changing,” he says. “We’re breaking the mindset that you need reams and reams of paper documents to support everything you do. A younger generation of business owners is really subscribing to this.”

Jonathan wants to keep Mazars ahead of the curve. “With Xero, we can capture data electronically and efficiently. This means we can offer our clients true visibility of their financials — as well as save hours and hours of time.”

And Jonathan’s favourite feature? “Xero lets us work in different locations, which is key to our approach, ethos, and offering.”

Though the local competition is relatively minimal, Mazars Thailand has enjoyed rapid growth. Jonathan attributes this in part to being able to offer Xero as a solution. “Xero has been an attractive feature for many of our new clients,” he says.

“Click every button – learn everything”

It may come as no small surprise then that one of Jonathan’s top tips for practices is to get Xero certified. “Understand the software; be an advocate for the software. This will rub off on your staff and clients.”

Jonathan promotes curiosity as an important factor for success. “Click every button – learn everything,” he says. “This will give you the knowledge to find innovative solutions for your clients.”

But most important, he says, are the people you work with. “Build your practice on your staff, not your staff around your practice. Their strengths will become your strengths.”

Mazars is a proud Xero-certified partner across Asia Pacific, Europe, and Australia.

This article was first published on the Xero blog.

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