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New Toolkit for PAOs to Advance Strategic Planning Out Now from IFAC

For PAOs at all stages of developing a strategic plan

Jun 25, 2024 | New York, New York | English

In order to significantly contribute to national economic and social development, PAOs around the world need a coherent strategy and operating model to realize their full potential. A strategic plan can guide and drive a PAO’s activities and priorities, determining where the organization is going, how it will get there, and how it will know if it gets there. 

To equip PAOs with a clear, practical, and outcome driven framework to develop, implement, and monitor an effective strategy, IFAC has released its Professional Accountancy Organization (PAO) Strategy Planning Toolkit: An end-to-end guide to strategic transformation. This toolkit is for PAOs at all stages of developing a strategic plan. It can help kickstart the process, and it also offers guidance for updating and refining existing plans.  

Creating and publishing the toolkit is itself an element of IFAC’s own organizational strategy and its vision of a robust and well-functioning accountancy profession, composed of competent and capable professionals supported by effective PAOs which contribute significantly to the sustainability of small, medium, and large businesses; sound capital markets; effective public services; and—ultimately—economic growth. 

The toolkit was launched today in Mauritius at a workshop co-hosted by IFAC’s PAO Development Advisory Group (PAODAG) and the Pan African Federation of Accountants (PAFA) leading up to PAFA’s Annual General Meeting. The workshop brought together over 50 PAO leaders who are present in Mauritius for PAFA’s meeting. 

The toolkit was made possible by a strategic alliance with PAFA who held the launch event and connected the IFAC PAODAG to PAO members and leaders who trailed the toolkit and ultimately informed its development. The need for this toolkit was recognized by the PAODAG who established a workstream chaired by Sheree Ebanks, CEO of CIIPA, with Zarif Ludin, Head of Institutional Partnership at ACCA, as content lead, to benefit all PAOs.

“To respond to the accountancy profession’s constantly evolving challenges and opportunities, PAOs need a strong strategic plan to be resilient, adaptive, and forward-thinking and make well-informed decisions,” said Lee White, IFAC Chief Executive Officer. “This toolkit, informed by our own experiences in strategic planning and the journeys of our member organizations, is made possible by our role as the global convener of the accountancy profession and contains a framework applicable around the world. We hope this toolkit can develop the process for PAOs or give new momentum and inspiration to those already engaged in it.” 

“The toolkit will play a pivotal role in building effective Professional Accountancy Organizations,” said Alta Prinsloo, CEO of PAFA. “Beyond the toolkit, it's essential for African PAOs to realise they can tap into additional support from PAFA. Our services include conducting gap analyses, facilitating access to best practices, developing action plans, and engaging with national stakeholders and development partners to enhance and recognize both the PAO and the national accountancy profession.”

PAFA, a network partner of IFAC, proudly represents 56 PAOs in 45 jurisdictions across Africa.

Before the toolkit’s official release, several PAOs, including IFAC member associate Emirates Association for Accountants & Auditors (EAAA), trialed the toolkit to shape its development and have seen improvement in their strategic planning. 

“We are proud to be one of the first users of the toolkit while it was under development, and in only a few months, we have seen considerable improvement in our strategic planning,” said Saif Bin Abed, EAAA Chairman. “As an organization, we are better prepared to act on the opportunities and challenges ahead.”  

“This toolkit has created an agile environment within the EAAA through its effective monitoring mechanism which enables us to respond quickly to different business variables and be able to update the strategy in a way that it promotes the sustainable growth of our organization,” said Ahmad Darwish, EAAA Vice Chairman. 

Download the toolkit, available now in English and French.  


About IFAC

IFAC is the global organization for the accountancy profession dedicated to serving the public interest by strengthening the profession and contributing to the development of strong international economies. IFAC is comprised of 180 members and associates in more than 135 jurisdictions, representing millions of professional accountants in public practice, education, government service, industry, and commerce.