Date posted: 19/04/2018 5 min read

Five reasons to attend WCOA

WCOA event ambassador Paul Meissner FCA, Director of 5ways Group, outlines why he’s attending the World Congress of Accountants in November in Sydney and why all accountants should go.

In Brief

  • Network with 6000 accountants from across the globe, hear world-class speakers and learn about the latest technology.
  • Earn most of your CPD points for this year in just four action-packed days at WCOA 2018, starting in Sydney on 5 November.
  • Have fun and dress up for a Melbourne Cup event, hop on a Sydney Harbour cruise, or network at a themed gala night.

By Paul Meissner FCA.

The World Congress of Accountants (WCOA) has been the premier accounting conference for the global business and finance community since 1904, and I’m thrilled to be an official event ambassador.

Beginning on 5 November 2018 at the International Convention Centre in Sydney, WCOA 2018, which is being co-hosted by Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, will bring more than 6000 delegates from across the globe to Australia’s stunning harbour city. The quadrennial event attracts leaders in finance, public policy, accounting and business management. Here are five valuable reasons why you should attend. 

Related: WCOA 2018

6000 delegates, world class speakers, innovative program - early bird ends soon

1. Networking your way to business expansion

As the founder of 5ways Group, one of Australia’s first 100% cloud-based accounting firms, I see WCOA 2018 as a thrilling opportunity to walk into conference theatres and breakout rooms brimming with accountants from across the world.

There will be more than 6000 delegates from at least 130 countries that we can meet, learn from and connect with. The global scale and breadth of delegates will ensure WCOA 2018 stands apart from other conferences where foreign attendees are merely a novelty. 

Building an expansive business network is essential in today’s digital world, where even the smallest microbusinesses can think globally from day one. My firm, for example, sources 10–15% of its revenue from overseas. For that reason, if you need assistance in China, New Zealand or America to support your work for an existing client, you could potentially find the right resources at WCOA 2018. 

WCOA is a thrilling opportunity to walk into conference theatres and breakout rooms brimming with accountants from across the world
Paul Meissner FCA Director of 5ways Group

2. Learn from the very best in our profession

As the son of an accountant, I have worked in public practice my entire career and I continue to seek new ways to learn more about my profession. 

Keynote speeches by internationally acclaimed business leaders, disruptors and cutting-edge innovators will headline WCOA 2018. Delegates can opt into breakout panel sessions and TEDx-style presentations from fellow accountants who know what you are going through. What they say will challenge the way we think about the future of business and our profession. In total, there will be 100 speakers at WCOA 2018, and I’m confident you’ll be able to use these insights and knowledge about our profession with your clients and within your business.

Moreover, the ability to earn most of your CPD hours for 2018 in just four days makes WCOA an event that time-poor accountants would do well to attend. 

3. Knowledge is power

World economies, business sectors and technology are rapidly changing. WCOA 2018 will keep you abreast of the critical issues and trends affecting the accounting profession. The congress will also bring the best and brightest from the accounting world to Sydney, and it is an unrivalled way to find out about innovative products and services that will transform the way we work.

4. Have some fun 

Apart from building networks and ramping up our knowledge, WCOA 2018 is an opportunity to have some fun with your colleagues. Often the most enjoyable parts of a conference, as well as the best networking opportunities, take place away from the sessions. On Tuesday, 6 November 2018 a Melbourne Cup event will celebrate the famous Australian horse race. Delegates can attend a Sydney Harbour cruise and a themed gala event that are sure to be entertaining.

5. The latest in accounting innovation

More than 50 exhibitors will showcase the world’s best fintechs, hardware and software and a whole day is devoted to learning about the latest innovations available to accountants. 

Despite the plethora of exhibitors, WCOA 2018 is an industry conference rather than a software expo. That aside, it's a full-time job keeping abreast of accounting technology. At WCOA 2018, you’ll be able to find and touch the latest innovations located conveniently within the walls of Sydney’s magnificent International Convention Centre.

Finally, if attending WCOA is on your career bucket list, it will be at least another generation before our profession’s foremost conference again visits our region. So, whether you’re operating as an accountant from Perth, Darwin, Auckland, Wellington, Suva or Apia, WCOA 2018 is an excellent opportunity on your doorstep to present your business to the world.  

Paul Meissner FCA is Director of 5ways Group.

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