In a digital world what is the role of finance professionals?

  • 14 July 2021
  • CPD Event
Webcast details

This is a joint event with the Chartered Banker Institute, MMU and ICAEW North West

Accountants used to complain about customers arriving to do their annual accounts with 12 months’ worth of receipts in a shoebox. Increased digitisation means that finance professionals don’t need to deal with this paper anymore. Increasingly IT packages complete the entire process

Relationship bankers take the accounts, calculate detailed ratios, and write reports explaining why funds should be lent to business customers. Increased use of algorithms and a “digital-first” culture means that these processes are now automated. So, firms don’t need a banker to do banking anymore.

Our panel will investigate if we don’t need accountants to do accounts and we don’t need bankers to do banking; what is the role of the finance professional? How should firms and individuals adapt so that they can add value in a digital age?

The Panel

Carol McLachlan

Carol McLachlan spent twenty years with EY Audit & Assurance in London and the North West. She was elected President of the Liverpool Society of Chartered Accountants 2018/2019 as well as an ICAEW Council member from 2019 and now sits on ICAEW's Education and Training Board . Carol is now an ILM 7 Executive Business coach, mentor and consultant at She is also a writer, speaker, researcher and programme designer for Left Brain Plus Ltd. Carol has achieved a masters research degree in ‘CPD for accountancy’ and is currently undertaking PhD research on the future of roles within the accountancy profession.

Rod Sellers OBE, FCA, BSc(Econ), DpBA

Rod graduated from London School of Economics before qualifying as a Chartered Accountant. For 26 years Rod worked at British Vita progressing through various corporate and financial positions to become Financial Director, then Chief Executive and ended his career there as Deputy Chairman.  Rod then set up his own Non-Executive Directorship/Consultancy operations working mainly with North West PLCs and private company boards.

Rod has a strong and active interest in the North West economy through his past service on several professional, industrial and regional bodies.  He was awarded an OBE “for Services to Business in the North West” and has recently assisted in writing books on “Disruption in Accounting and Auditing”.

Kate West

Having spent the first 15 years of her career working for a series of large UK and US Corporates, Kate has an impressive portfolio of Industry experience which spans both the service and manufacturing sectors.

She qualified as a Chartered Management Accountant (ACMA, CGMA) in 1995, and served in a variety of roles in Finance, Corporate Planning, and Business Management - including seven years at industrial giant Caterpillar Inc.

Chairing the Event

Justin Kyriakou, Regional Director, ICAEW North West

Before joining ICAEW in March of this year Justin worked for the Association of Accounting Technicians. Justin was responsible for the significant growth of AAT in the North of England. In 2014 Justin was promoted to Global Development Manager for AAT and lead AAT’s international team until late 2019. In that time Justin was responsible for taking AAT into various markets across South East Asia, Europe and the Middle East as well as delivering a number MOU’s with international accounting bodies. Justin also represented AAT at CAPA, PAFA, ASEAN and IFAC.

Justin has a successful track record of leading and managing regional, national and international growth, reputation and influence and is experienced at providing national and international solutions in professional training and development.



Date & Schedule

Wednesday 14 July 

13:00 - 14:00 BST 

Booking details

To register, click here. 

If you experience any difficulties please email [email protected]