Progression and Development

Ensuring our team has the time to focus on their own career development

I’ve progressed from Senior Tax Manager at Shorts, to a Director in control of an entire Department, and now leading a part of the business as Tax Partner.

David Robinson, Tax Partner

We are really proud of our record of team development and have supported many individuals with their progression within the firm.

We understand that when people are busy, working on day-to-day client deadlines, focusing on personal development can sometimes be overlooked.  So, we ensure that our team has the time to focus on their own career development too.

Our management development program ensures that every team member has their own tailored personal development plan which reflects their unique set of aspirations, priorities and goals; because every one of our team is at a different stage of their career.

  • After learning more about their career aspirations, we agree on a set of shared goals that help each individual achieve their aspirations.  And our HR follow-up workflows ensure accountability for actioning those promises on both sides.
  • Our team have access to information covering a wide range of courses on offer to help them reach their goal, whether that might be Manager, Senior Manager, Director, or preparing for Partner.
  • Mentoring from key members of the senior team provides additional support where required.
  • Providing the freedom to develop new skills and extend interests further.

Progression and development



Providing the time to focus on you

Rob Brown is a best-selling author and successful podcaster, within the accounting sector. An expert in delving into the heart of the topic, Rob interviews Managing Partner, Andy Irvine to understand why promoting career development is good news for the team, but also for Shorts.

Our team in control

Accounting podcaster, Rob Brown interviewed four members of our team (Alice Johnson, Stephen Allender, Martin Dean and Helena Flatters) to understand what personal development means to each of them, how they have each taken control of their career path and how Shorts is supporting their journey.

Progression within our team - in their own words



Alicia Williams, Client Finance Director

One of the great advantages of Shorts is its commitment to developing and progressing the existing team. In just under six years, I have progressed from Accounts Senior to Manager and then in April 2022, I was promoted to Client Finance Director. Development is supported by the varied training opportunities available and I am currently doing a course on data analytics.

Alicia's team profile

David Robinson, Tax Partner

Shorts is a true meritocracy and individuals are given responsibility and encouraged to flourish regardless of their age or experience. I can attest to this, as I joined Shorts in 2015 and have since progressed through the ranks, joining the Partnership in 2022. During my time at the firm, I’ve progressed from being a Senior Manager advising a portfolio of clients, to a Director in control of an entire Department, and now leading a part of the business as Tax Partner.”

David's team profile

Matty Lewis, Audit and Accounts Manager

“There is no “us and them” approach at Shorts – the Partners are part of the team and having that level of exposure aids development at all levels; I’ve been encouraged to share my ideas and thoughts from the outset. Partners and key members of the team are available to discuss any concerns, career aspirations, etc, and genuinely want the best for everyone.

In my recent progression to manager, I have not been thrown in at the deep end, but initially given a smaller portfolio, which helped me get up to speed with the admin and project management related tasks. I have weekly catch-ups with a partner to discuss my progress when he also provides useful tips, such as time and team management skills. I also have access to other key team members, who provide regular coaching sessions to develop soft skills, reflect on situations/experiences and develop goals to continue my development.

I feel a much more rounded individual since joining Shorts only two years ago, and trust that my development will continue.”

Matty's team profile

Steven Strawther, Head of tax compliance

“Shorts culture is refreshing; one of embracing and encouraging innovative ideas, no matter your position in the firm.  This gave me the confidence to approach the partner group with my ideas and I was encouraged to embark on refining and developing the Tax Compliance department processes. I was given autonomy to lead the project but coaching from the senior team members and partner group was always available. With their support, I was able to take my ideas from concept to fruition.

The partners were able to recognise my strengths and have helped me realise my potential. I have progressed from being a Manager to a Senior Manager leading the Tax Compliance Department. I am still on my career journey with Shorts and the firm continues to provide training to develop my management skills along with regular mentoring sessions from the partner group. Shorts is an exciting and progressive firm, and I am proud to be a part of it.”

Steven's team profile

Supporting our clients - living our lives

Team focus

Our recruitment program includes many just starting out on their career journey in accountancy.

Whether joining through our graduate program, as an apprentice or studying for higher qualifications, all of our trainees are fully supported throughout their training journey and many of our students stay with us full-time after completing their studies.

We look after our clients really well, but we also look after our team, because we know that their welfare and development are equally as important.

For everyone, personal time when we are not working is extremely valuable, and it is for that reason, that our zero overtime policy was created.  Fundamentally, we do not expect any of our team to work more than their basic weekly hours.

Although this practice is quite unique within the accounting industry, we are proud to consistently see average overtime at less than one hour per employee per month.

Hybrid working, core hours, and zero overtime policies mean that our team manage their time better – both in and out of the office.

We don’t work to unrealistic timescales and never accept client work that we are unable to fulfil.

We manage our employee levels to ensure that our team is always around 15% over capacity at any time, meaning that they should never feel overwhelmed or under undue pressure.

Consequently, our team have the appropriate time to focus on their work – time to think, time to analyse, and time to bounce off one another with ideas. Not only does this lead to improved job satisfaction, but also results in higher levels of client service.

Our team regularly takes part in local and national fundraising events and all team members have the opportunity to take part in one volunteering day each year.

There is an opportunity to get involved in

  • Sporting events, tournaments and challenges
  • Cake sales
  • Christmas events
  • Local charity collections

We’ve created an environment where our team feel supported, developed and happy; a blend of interesting and challenging work, with time to contribute their own ideas, concentrate on personal development whilst ensuring a healthy life balance, both in and out of work.

We work together, celebrate our successes together and always share our team news.

To find out more about what’s been happening recently, visit our LinkedIn page.

Team News

Our recent Team News

How to improve your business credit score

If you’ve ever borrowed money, you will be familiar with an individual’s credit score. A credit score is used as a reference to lenders and helps them assess the risk involved with providing that person with credit. The higher the credit score, the more likely a person generally is to be accepted for credit, they may also be accepted for larger sums.

Read more

What is a Holding Company?

We regularly advise on of the benefits of creating a group structure via the use of a holding company.  This is a conversation that we regularly have with clients, and particularly now during the current economic environment.  But what exactly does this mean and what are the key advantages and disadvantages to creating one?

Read more

How to get invoices paid faster

For companies or trades, few things are as frustrating as unpaid or late invoices. Not only does chasing invoices create stress and use up valuable time, but it also impacts your balance sheet, and may put strain on client relationships.

Read more

Interested in finding out more?

We’re always open to talking to great people. If you feel that Shorts would be a great fit for your next career move, then why not send us your contact details; we’ll give you a call and maybe meet up to chat over coffee? (If you’d prefer to send us your CV, you can add that too)