I went to a Chantrey Vellacott alumni ‘do’ recently.  I had a most enjoyable time although it felt a little strange as I never worked for the firm – but I had worked for one the predecessors.  I even managed to find a couple of faces I recognised from those dim and distant days; I left shortly after passing my ACA exams in 1982. I have fond memories of my ‘articles’ (as that training period was called in those days).

I also get invited to alumni parties arranged by Deloitte. Again the invitations stem from my time at a predecessor firm – this time ‘Touche Ross’ which is where I started my tax career shortly after I qualified in 1982.

Again I have happy memories of my time at Touche Ross – as I do of most of the firms I worked for before I established the Tax Advice Network.

This is all in stark contrast to one ex employee of a big 4 firm. He had met his wife at a small regional office of the firm. When she left shortly after their marriage she was added to the alumni list. Then he left and started his own small practice. Clearly he wasn’t any competition for the local office of the Big 4 firm. Nevertheless he was not added to the alumni list and his wife’s name was dropped too.

Two years later however he merged his practice with a mid tier firm and after a further two years he left and became MD of a premier league football club.  Guess what happened when his old Big 4 firm tried to tender for the audit!