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A Peek Behind the Curtain: Sharing Our 5-Year Plan

March 04, 2022

Have you ever wished you could get a secret look at what goes on in the planning stages in some companies? To be a fly on the wall, to understand what they have up their sleeve and why they do the things they do, to have the ability to see their long-term goals? We’ve decided to give our readers just that, a sneak peek at what makes Armanino tick on a daily basis and the plans that led up to what has become our everyday hustle.

As we head into the future, our roadmap that we’ve titled Vision 2025 will help ensure we continue to become the most unique and special firm in the industry, committed to excellence and innovation and creating a culture focused on a positive employee experience for the ultimate benefit to our clients and communities.

Vision 2025

To be successful, you need planning. Like a writer uses an outline, or a builder uses a blueprint, organizations like us develop a strategic plan. This shines light on what our goals are and what steps we need to take to achieve reach them.

In fact, we have two plans. One is Vision 2025, which is our five-year plan. Then  – each year, we develop a 12-month strategic plan that aligns with Vision 2025. Both are built on the same four pillars: Growth, People, Clients and Transformation (we’ll dive deeper into these below).

These plans aren’t just meant for the partners and other leaders at the top. What is so impactful about our vision is that every employee can find a piece to anchor to. When we can all look at this giant plan and point to where our roles come in, that’s exciting. It helps give our employees purpose and lets them know that everyone can make their mark and play a part.

Our teams each have their own purpose, goals and activities, but at the end of the day, they all tie to Vision 2025, which helps keep us aligned as a firm.

Growth

Growth is the first pillar in Vision 2025 and focuses on our size and impact in the market, our dual organic/inorganic growth and our profitability. We’ve been the fastest growing firm in the industry for the last 15 years because of our dual growth strategy.

Our organic growth, which includes things like our business development efforts and adding new service lines, will help us grow by 10% each year.

Historically, our organic growth has put us in the spotlight because other firms are drawn to our entrepreneurial approach.

On the inorganic side, we’ll continue to participate in mergers and acquisitions as part of our growth strategy, but only if it’s the right fit for both parties in terms of cultural values. When it is the right fit, we, don’t charge in and say, “Okay, this is how we do things,” we collaborate to adopt what works well, what needs changing and understand what our new employees’ concerns are.

We want our new people to know that what they love about their current organization will still be a huge part of their experience at Armanino. We’re open to the knowledge they bring to the table because part of our success comes from the great people we’ve added, the services we’ve been able to expand and the greater industry depth we can offer.

While we’ll continue to have a growth mindset, it's never been about becoming the largest firm. It’s about being the absolute best for our clients and our people.

People

A huge pillar of our vision is people. By 2025 we want to be better known for our deep commitment to developing our people, because without them, we won’t reach our goals and won’t be able to offer true value to our clients. To do this, we’re focusing on further improving our inclusive culture, growth opportunities, self-directed career paths and leadership development.

How are we going to make sure our employees have what they need to grow? With our internal education platforms like Elevate Learn and the Industry Edge Certificate Program, which provide self-paced learning opportunities for employees. We want to offer growth opportunities to our people that will set us apart from other firms and ultimately help us provide more value to our clients.

Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) is another major piece of the pillar, with a particular focus on female partners and leaders. This year we welcomed our largest partner class to date, and 54% are women. As we keep growing, our boards, committees and initiatives do a great job in maintaining our firm’s sense of being a family while teaching valuable lessons, encouraging the development of skills and making sure we have an inclusive culture. Through our IDEAL team and The Bridge, we’re constantly evaluating and creating programs to celebrate, educate and support female empowerment and advancement, as well as DEI throughout every part of our firm.

Creating an environment where people can do what they’re passionate about and shape the future for themselves and our clients is what truly sets us apart.

Clients

Elevating our client experience over the next several years is the third pillar of Vision 2025. We want to know what it’s like to work with us from the client’s point of view and see how we can make it more seamless and enjoyable for them. That client-obsessed mentality has us looking at all the ways clients interact with us, so we can provide them what they need when they need it. Finally, we want our client experience to be holistic and unique, so we are developing a 24/7 digital platform to provide clients with transparency, easy access to the work we’re doing for them and easier ways to get in contact with us.

Transformation

Given how fast the world is evolving around us, transforming our organization is the only way we can keep up and is a ‘must-do’ if we want to become the best. We can’t look to other firms for how to  around us to do this, either. We have to look within and create a “new lane” for ourselves — we want others to look to us for inspiration!

We recently created a Transformation and Practice Excellence (TPE) group that is responsible for firmwide strategic and transformation initiatives like standardizing business processes, improving our M&A integration process, assurance innovation, and expanding our Center of Excellence. They’re also playing a big role in developing the 24/7 digital platform to enhance our client’s experience that we mentioned above.

Of course, it wouldn’t be a “vision” if we didn’t mention the buzzwords “data" and analytics.” We’ll  definitely be focusing on and investing in data and analytics offerings that can add value for our clients. We also plan on automating and standardizing 100% of the repeatable tasks our employees have to do, to free up some of their time for better use. Getting rid of the mundane tasks that can wear us all down will allow our people to take on other work that they might be interested in or spend some extra time on internal or external education — which benefits them and our clients.

The Future

Our Vision 2025 will help us make sure we’re engaged, forward-focused, leaning into the future and thinking about what's next and what steps we need to take to become our best selves. With a growth mindset and a culture of growth, we can afford to say yes to more opportunities because we have more resources. And we know it’s okay to take risks and try new things because we are growing and changing. When we take a chance on something new and it pays off, we — and our clients — are better off.

Armanino will continue to grow, while along the way developing our people, defining and redefining the services clients need and desire, and adapting to change ourselves in order to be the most innovative and entrepreneurial firm. While we’re proud of our external growth, it’s our internal growth and the new opportunities we can offer to our people and clients that we’re most proud of.

Fostering an environment where people can do what they’re passionate about and shape the future for themselves and our clients is what truly sets us apart.

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