In 2011-12, we have made the following progress towards delivering our strategy to 2015:
We narrowly missed the target we set for ourselves, largely because fewer candidates than we expected completed our final examinations in June 2011. Nevertheless, we were pleased to have admitted 9,412 members (compared to 9,203 in the previous year). We had particularly good growth in new member numbers in Nigeria (up by 57%), Pakistan (up by 57%) and Uganda (up by 61%). Because of continuing demand for the ACCA Qualification around the world, we are aiming to grow our membership base to 162,015 by 31 March 2013.
We have delivered the surplus agreed with Council. The surplus is essential to ensure ACCA can invest in cost-effective service delivery to meet the expectations of customers and in the overall reputation and influence of ACCA as an organisation in employment markets around the world to strengthen the value of the ACCA designation for members. Key initiatives for 2012-13 to grow ACCA in a sustainable way include continuing to promote cost awareness and seeking better value for money across the organisation. This includes rolling out improved contract management for our main suppliers.
We are pleased to have exceeded the retention target we set ourselves and delighted that, with continuing economic challenges in many markets, such a high proportion of our members see the value of their designation.
We have outperformed our target in relation to employers believing that our global policy output brings public value. This reflects the investment we have made in new Global Forums, an enhanced research programme on key areas of importance to CFOs and increasing influence with policymakers, regulators and standard setters. In the coming year, we will continue to benefit from the input of our Global Forums in driving an agenda of relevance to employers that also meets the wider needs of society at large. For these reasons, we have set a higher target (+4% points) for 2012-13.
We achieved our target but, because of differing levels of professional body information being available in different markets, we are changing how we measure this for 2012-13. For the coming performance year, we will measure this through our share of the member and student market amongst other established professional accountancy bodies that are internationally active and are aiming for a 37.9% market share. From 2012-13, we are planning to fund targeted investment in both new and existing markets and sectors and, through this multi-year investment, we intend to deliver further sustainable growth in reputation, influence and size.
We exceeded the target we set ourselves by 4,795 students and growth was strong in a wide range of markets including well-established ones such as the UK, Malaysia and the Caribbean, but also in newer markets such as Bangladesh.
We have SLAs established for a number of our processes: call answering times, email response times, complaints resolved, time taken to process registrations, CPD evidence reviews and CBE licences. To meet this target was particularly pleasing as we have seen sustained increases in contact since August 2011. Meeting our SLAs here has driven improved customer satisfaction with 75% of students (61% in 2010-11) and 70% of members (57% in 2010-11) saying that ACCA is easy to do business with online. For 2012-13, we are including more measures around quality in addition to speed of service, as well as increasing the target we want to meet in order to drive further improvement.
We have maintained a high level of satisfaction with scores remaining consistent with results in 2010-11. Overall member satisfaction was 79% (based on 4,263 respondents globally) and student satisfaction was 76% (based on 14,588 respondents globally). The main change was that ‘value for money’ was shown to be the main driver of satisfaction (last year, it was career opportunities). In this respect, we were pleased that ACCA was ranked by our members as the leading professional accountancy body in terms of value for money.
This is a new form of measurement for 2011-12, selected so that we can benchmark ourselves against organisations which lead in people development. Best Companies awards four levels of accreditation: One to Watch, 1 Star Company, 2 Star Company and 3 Star Company. We missed our target, though we still met the benchmark for the Best Companies One to Watch category. We believe that through targeted efforts we can aspire to be a 1 Star organisation in 2012-13. Our employees’ views on their manager and leadership were the two most highly correlated factors within engagement at ACCA. In 2012-13, we therefore plan to target interventions in these areas as we believe they will have the greatest positive impact. This includes continuing our Inspirational Manager programmes, methodology research to discover the inspiring and engaging behaviours that high scoring managers display and providing leadership-specific coaching and development.
In common with our service delivery SLAs, our IT SLAs monitor the various elements of IT service provision that are required to enable ACCA to operate efficiently. The investment undertaken in our IT infrastructure in 2011-12 has delivered a more robust and reliable service which has enabled us to exceed the targets we set.
While 81% is a good result, especially as we continue to go through significant change across the organisation, we fell short of the target we set. We believe that our new performance management process which enables employees better to link their personal contributions to our strategy will drive better understanding, along with our plans to align our internal communications more closely to our strategy. We've therefore kept our target for 2012-13 at the same high level.
We saw small declines in scores relating to information on members and ACCA's competitors which, because this information is used by many employee groups across ACCA, drove down our overall score in 2011-12. In 2012-13, we plan to further develop our member and market insight to address this.
Last updated: 1 Aug 2012