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DFK News

01 04 2021

New partner appointed at Wilson Wright

Wilson Wright has promoted Deon van Tonder to Partner with effect from 1st April 2021.

Deon’s appointment further demonstrates the continued growth of the practice and complements and enhances the firm’s profile. This appointment creates an 11 partner-led firm where people, heritage, trust and partnership is at the heart of what we believe in.

Deon joined Wilson Wright six years ago as an Audit Manager, progressing to Associate in 2018. He trained and qualified as a Chartered Accountant in South Africa, before moving to London in 2008. He is a member of the South African Institute of Chartered Accountants and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales.

Deon has a wealth of experience in auditing and financial reporting. He works closely with clients in several different sectors, including software development, investment property, manufacturing, hospitality and recruitment, as well as undertaking corporate finance work.

Adam Cramer, CEO at Wilson Wright, said: “Since joining us six years ago, Deon has proven himself an invaluable member of our team.

He is a highly capable professional whose appointment to Partner is testament to his technical excellence, dedication and loyalty to clients and colleagues alike.

As a Partner, I know that he will take his work and client relationships to an even higher level and together with my fellow Partners, we are delighted to welcome him to the partnership.”

I am sure you will join us in congratulating and wishing him every success with the firm.

30 03 2021

Successful start to Training Programme

DFK UK and Ireland has seen a successful start to its first ever ‘Route to Partner’ training programme.

The online programme is being delivered by training provider The Openside Group and is aimed at managers looking to progress to partner level.

A total of 20 participants from DFK UK and Ireland member firms are taking part in the six-week programme, which consists of a weekly webinar looking at the core skills required to become an effective leader.

The sessions are being led by facilitators Debbie Dudley and William Johnson, of The Openside Group.

Woven into the programme is an understanding of the dynamics of a professional services partnership-based environment, the need to manage both the internal and external environment, and to ensure individual progression and maximise service delivery.

The training programme was launched on February 24, with the final session scheduled for March 31.


Helen Rutter, an Audit and Advisory Manager at RPG Chartered Accountants based in Manchester, is one of those taking part and spoke about the training programme and how it is helping her progress following the first two sessions.

I joined RPG as a graduate in 2013 and predominantly work in the audit team at the practice. We’re currently a team of eleven, although when we are joined by Crawfords on 31st March that number will grow, and within this there are five people who I manage week-to-week.

A formal progression route for someone at my level is not something that has previously been in place at RPG due to the size of the practice, and although we’ve always had the opportunity to complete formal qualifications, there hasn’t been such a focus on developing soft skills.

However, the business is currently going through a period of growth and change including the acquisition and I am working with my director Martin Chatten who is pushing forward with the changes we need to make in our area.

My ultimate career goal is to make partner, although not necessarily solely focused on audit, but there are a number of skills I need to develop to help me achieve this, which is one of the things that DFK has been so helpful with.

I have attended a number of DFK conferences and courses and believe that the new Route to Partner programme can help me further as I progress in my career.

The first session covered being a firm-wide advisor and ambassador rather than just a service line ambassador. In my role I’m very much a service line ambassador, so the session definitely helped identify this as something to work on.

One of the tasks we were set was to put this into practice, and within RPG we have actually just launched a “learning lunches” initiative where people from across the firm can come together and speak about their area so we all have knowledge of the business as a whole, which is very helpful. We will also have some external speakers which will enable us to have an overview of some of the other commercial issues facing clients and how we can signpost clients to additional support

Even in such a short space of time, I’m now much more aware of what I’m saying to clients and am keen to showcase what we can offer as a business rather than just the services we can provide within the audit team – something which I wouldn’t have thought to do before the training.

The second session focused on points of view and how to proactively form and deliver a point of view to clients in relation to the area you’re working in. For instance, if a client is scheduled to re-open on June 22, will they be able to do this smoothly or has their workforce built up annual leave that they are then requesting to take which will impact their productivity.

This is also something I’m looking forward to putting into practice, particularly as there will no doubt be a lot of considerations for business leaders as Covid restrictions are eased, and eventually lifted, by the government.

In just two sessions, the training programme has already improved my awareness of what I need to do to progress in my career and has given me things to think about.

Although I’ve been aware of some of what has been covered, I certainly didn’t realise the importance of being a firm-wide ambassador and what that actually meant. I thought it meant being an expert in everything in order to win new business, but this isn’t necessarily the case.

When engaging with companies you just need to be able to talk about examples of how you’ve helped a client that they can relate to. Having that one small anecdote demonstrates you understand their business and you can then refer them on to a specialist.

All of the topics we’ve covered in the training so far have been really interesting and not something you think about on a day-to-day basis. It’s about taking a step back and seeing your role in perspective. It’s also been a good opportunity to connect with others in a similar position with a shared goal, and I’m really looking forward to the rest of the sessions.

26 03 2021

RPG Chartered Accountants announce a bumper crop of new appointments.

Four new staff have been appointed and are in position just ahead of RPG Chartered Accountants being joined by Crawfords Chartered Accountants on 31st March 2021.

RPG Group Managing Director Jonathan Brownson commented:

“I am delighted to welcome four new members to the RPG team.  It is tremendous that we have the need to recruit especially when we will be joined by 25 new colleagues from Crawfords in just a few days’ time.”

Gareth Hunt joins RPG as a Licensed Insolvency Practitioner having previously been at Beesley Corporate Recovery.  Gareth will be joined by leading Insolvency Practitioners David Kaye and Alex Kachani, and Senior Insolvency Manager Tony Chan when Crawfords join with RPG on March 31st creating a highly experienced insolvency team, RPG Business Recovery.

Paulina Danilescu joins the RPG Business Services team bringing experience in VAT and accounts preparation having previously worked at Madisons and CKW chartered accountants. 

Georgia Thomas and Zoe Stopford have both joined RPG as Trainee Payroll Administrators and will be based at the RPG office in St Asaph, Denbighshire along with other members of the RPG payroll team.

Jonathan Brownson continued:
 “The recruitment demonstrates our continued investment in the future and our desire to ensure that we continue to provide an outstanding service for our clients.”


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