The ability to listen and learn from one another has always been vital in parliament, in business and in most aspects of daily life. But at this particular moment in time, as national and global events continue to reiterate, it is uncommonly crucial that we forge new channels of communication and reinforce existing ones. The following article from Miah & Company GB Ltd is an attempt to do just that. We would welcome your thoughts on this or any other Parliamentary Review article.
Miah & Company GB Ltd
Rt Hon The Lord David Blunkett
Rt Hon The Lord Eric Pickles
THE PARLIAMENTARY REVIEW
Highlighting best practice
34 | MIAH & COMPANY LONDON LTD
Mohammad Miah, Director
Mohammad Miah founded Miah & Company in
1970 and has since provided accountancy and tax
consultancy services to SMEs up and down the country.
For many years, he worked as an accountant elsewhere in
finance while practising at home on a part-time basis; it did,
however, grow by gaining clients almost exclusively through
recommendations. From their offices in Eltham, the firm
specialise in assisting privately owned small businesses to
grow and reach their potential. Mohammad documents the
company’s journey below and discusses the ever-changing
regulatory climate of the financial services sector.
My main motivation in starting the firm was knowing how much my services could
help small business communities. I started by taking an approach of always being
ready to understand in detail and help with the problems that clients had; this has
proven to be incredibly successful with our customer base and still rings out through
all work we undertake, even now.
I’ve always found that creating a strong, trusting relationship with a client often
secures their business for the future, usually indefinitely. At Miah & Co, we look to
forge resilient partnerships with clients up and down the country – as such, my work
is not just limited to London. From our offices in Eltham, we operate all over the
country, serving businesses in Swansea, Portsmouth, Southampton and Gloucester,
just to name a few.
Where we specialise
We provide a variety of services to small and medium-sized businesses. Among the
fields we focus on are bookkeeping for business start-ups, company formation, filing
yearly accounts and tax returns, VAT, payroll systems and self-assessments.
Many of our clients do not have the financial knowledge that HMRC requires from
them when it comes to ensuring that all information is recorded appropriately. We
know, of course, that the figures generated from that data represent a true and fair
view of their financial status, and understand how necessary it is – but for a lot of
small businesses, compiling that data is no easy feat.
Our main aim with clients is to inform and assist with regard to compliant record-
keeping. Government rules and regulations can be overwhelming at the best of
times, and we’ve seen many of our clients comment that they’ve been unable to get
the same kind of basic accounts help from anywhere else. The main priority for all of
our clients is compliance, but many of them simply don’t know how they can ensure
it across the board. This is where we come in.
AT A GLANCE
MIAH & COMPANY LONDON LTD
»Director: Mohammad Miah
»Founded in 1982
»Based in Eltham, southeast
»Services: Accountancy and tax
»No. of staff: 7
»Operating all over the
country, including in Swansea,
Portsmouth, Gloucester and
Miah & Company
35MIAH & COMPANY LONDON LTD |
BEST PRACTICE REPRESENTATIVE 2019
»CONTINUED PARTNERSHIP AND UNDERSTANDING
When I started my practice in 1982, I had only two members of staff.
Although we have since expanded, some of my original colleagues still
work at the business today, having since qualified and joined me as
partners at the firm. Without their help and understanding I could not
have been here. My success is their success and I could not be more
thankful for their work.
Together, our approach has always been to understand our clients’
problems and try to help them as much as possible, thereby often
creating a longstanding relationship. This has served us well over the
past four decades and will continue to underpin all the work we do.
An era for change
There have been a record number
of changes in the last few years
throughout the accountancy and
financial services sector. These include:
»Real-time information for payroll
following the Pensions Act 2008
»Ongoing talks redefining the tax
»Making Tax Digital
»Drastic increase in HMRC enquiries
As an accountancy firm, we ensure that
all staff members are trained for each
new piece of legislation well in advance.
This means there’s a far lower risk of
human error when the regulations are
finally implemented – thus leading to
We are currently training staff and
finalising internal procedures for the
changes that MTD will bring. This will
impact the practice heavily, as well
as clients; according to HMRC, our
workload could initially increase by up to
five times for the transition period. We
have been working closely with clients
to help them in understanding all of
these new rules and regulations, but it
has not been an easy process – not least
because many of these changes are new
If layers of legislation continue to be laid
on top of the overwhelming amount of
existing financial regulation, however, we
will carry on operating in a marketplace
where advisers ignorant of the rules are
rewarded for making things simpler.
Recent financial crashes and
The weaknesses and failures of many
financial institutions were clearly shown
by the crash of 2008. More recently, the
collapse of Carillion has exposed the big
accountancy firms. In a damning 100-
page report, the Work and Pensions
and Business, Energy and Industrial
Strategy committee said: “The big four
accountancy firms were a cosy club
incapable of providing the degree of
independent challenge needed.”
Carillion’s collapse has exposed
systematic flaws in corporate Britain and
showed that regulations were ultimately
toothless. In my view, when auditing a
company, the body responsible must
retrieve a cashflow analysis of the last
five years. This should then be compared
to other, similar bodies in the same
industry. To ensure continued operational
excellence, the auditors should then
prepare a report to the board of
directors; if the company does not
follow the actions advised in the report,
there will then be serious consequences.
I think we have seen more than enough
failure when it comes to our tougher
regulations – some are simply not
working. It is apparently abundantly
clear that professional institutions
cannot control the behaviour of their
members, whose greedy behaviour can
then irreparably damage the reputation
of the profession in question. I believe
that professional bodies should come
together and prepare a standardised,
consistent approach to counteract these
critical issues plaguing modern industry.
Presently, the FCA is set up to regulate
members’ conduct, but its processes
appear to be unfit for the finance sector
of today. In my mind, the regulator
should be redefined, given new scope
and renamed as the FCCA – the
Financial Conduct Control Authority.
Our offices in Eltham,
At Miah & Co,
we look to
with clients up
and down the
Rt Hon Kwasi Kwarteng's Foreword For The Parliamentary Review
This year’s Parliamentary Review reflects on a tumultuous and extraordinary year, globally and nationally. As well as being an MP, I am a keen student of history, and I am conscious that 2020 would mark the end of an era. It will be remembered as the year in which we concluded Brexit negotiations and finally left the European Union. Above all, it will be remembered as the year of Covid-19.
In our fight against the pandemic, I am delighted that our vaccination programme is beginning to turn the tide – and I pay tribute to the British businesses, scientists and all those who have helped us to achieve this. But the virus has dealt enormous damage, and we now have a duty to rebuild our economy.
We must ensure that businesses are protected. We have made more than £350 billion available to that end, with grants, business rates relief and our furlough scheme supporting more than 11 million people and jobs in every corner of the country, maintaining livelihoods while easing the pressure on employers. The next step is to work with business to build back better and greener, putting the net zero carbon challenge at the heart of our recovery. This is a complex undertaking, but one which I hope will be recognised as a once in a lifetime opportunity.
Through the prime minister’s ten point plan for a green industrial revolution, we can level up every region of the UK, supporting 250,000 green jobs while we accelerate our progress towards net zero carbon emissions.
With our commitment to raise R&D spending to 2.4% of GDP and the creation of the Advanced Research & Invention Agency, we are empowering our fantastic researchers to take on groundbreaking research, delivering funding with flexibility and speed. With this approach, innovators will be able to work with our traditional industrial heartlands to explore new technologies, and design and manufacture the products on which the future will be built – ready for export around the globe.
And I believe trade will flourish. We are a leading nation in the fight against climate change. As the host of COP26 this year, we have an incredible opportunity to market our low-carbon products and expertise. Our departure from the EU gives us the chance to be a champion of truly global free trade; we have already signed trade deals with more than 60 countries around the world.
As we turn the page and leave 2020 behind, I am excited about the new chapter which Britain is now writing for itself, and for the opportunities which lie ahead of us.