Firm grows in Inverurie as local economy goes digital on tax

Business advisory director Emma Waterman
Business advisory director Emma Waterman

Scotland’s largest independent accountancy and business advisory firm, is forecasting ongoing growth at its office in Inverurie, partly down to the rural economy turning to digital tax management – modernising after centuries of tradition.

Johnston Carmichael's Inverurie office, based at Thainstone, has seen a 50% increase in turnover over the last ten years and its employee group has risen in line by a similar volume, with current staff numbers now at 65.

That news comes as a new leadership team steps up to lead the practice on the retiral of managing partner Jim Porter, who has been with Johnston Carmichael for 25 years and spent a decade as head of the Inverurie office.

Emma Waterman, business advisory director, will take on Jim’s role as office head. Emma manages a diverse portfolio of clients in construction and property management; food & drink; agriculture and hospitality sectors and has been instrumental in introducing streamlined processes which give her colleagues greater time to focus on clients’ requirements.

Emma Waterman said: “I’m proud to take on Jim’s mantle, working alongside business advisory partner Graham Leith, as we continue to support our customer base.

“Jim is well known in the local market, and we’ll miss his character in the office – as well as his support on the Kiltwalk, which he’s taken part in along with a number of colleagues in the years since the first event took place in Aberdeen, most recently taking part in the 2019 Mighty Stride.”

“Businesses are experiencing a lot of change at the moment bringing both challenges and opportunities which we can help them navigate. It’s been a particularly demanding time for those responding to HMRC’s making tax digital plans but it’s been great to see a positive response to the change as we’ve helped them consider the range of digital options that are available.”

In recent months, very many businesses in the Inverurie area have moved their tax to digital from paper, with support from Johnston Carmichael through digital workshops and provision of software solutions which have introduced the benefits of better data management and reporting.

Sandy Manson, chief executive of Johnston Carmichael, said: “As our firm grows, it’s vital for our long-term success that we have a strong succession plan in place. Jim has played an important part in building our thriving Inverurie practice and now is the time to pass the baton to a very strong leadership team with Emma at the helm.

“The prospects for our Inverurie practice are excellent because we are better geared than ever to help and support local businesses grow and succeed. We thank Jim for his 25-year tenure and wish him well in his retirement.”