Late last month, UHY Haines Norton chair, Michael Coughtrey said the market is getting tougher for mid-tier accounting networks to attract new members.
For Mr Hilton, the network model requires “speed and agility” to maintain relevance and appeal.
“For those struggling, maybe it’s what they’re delivering to their members that isn’t appropriate and hasn’t changed,” Mr Hilton told Accountants Daily.
“Compared to this time 10 years ago, we’ve completely changed, and that’s because the profession has changed. You need to be responsive and collaborative, or the market will move on without you,” he said.
“Name and prestige were big… Now, that doesn’t mean a lot. The focus is on service and advice,” he added.
Walker Wayland has 23 firms in its network, and is pursuing another five to round out 2018. The network’s sweet spot is firms doing between four to 10 million turnover, which are in a growth mindset and onboard with modern trends like cloud accounting.
Queensland-based firm, Divest Merge Acquire (DMA), was the latest to join Walker Wayland as a boutique member in late March.