Awards joy for Lancaster firm’s head of finance
The head of finance at Lancaster-based accountancy firm ICS Accounting received a prestigious accolade at the recent Sub36 awards.
Maggie Lawson, 29, took home the ‘Young Professional’ award at the event in Blackpool after impressing the judges with her career progression at ICS since joining the company two and a half years ago.
Maggie said: “I was very surprised when the judge announced that I had won the category of Young Professional – mainly because of the high calibre of finalists in my category. Ultimately, I was very proud that the judges had recognised the achievements I have reached at a relatively young age.
“All of my colleagues, particularly the ICS managing director, John Lyon, and operations director, Steve Cornwall, were very excited when they found out about the award. I was inundated with lovely messages from friends and family congratulating me on my achievement. My mum is a professor at Lancaster University and has taught me that the only way to achieve success is to work hard and remain determined, no matter what hurdles are thrown at you.”
She added: “I very much consider myself to be a loyal Lancastrian. I am really proud to work for a Lancaster business, knowing that our work contributes to our local community through supporting other local businesses and providing opportunities.”
In Maggie’s role as head of finance, she manages two departments – the external accounts teams servicing clients together with managing the ICS Group’s finances. Maggie also delivers internal accounting training and opportunities to study within ICS, after beginning her own career as an apprentice at an accountancy firm.
She said: “I feel very passionately about qualifications working alongside experience. This is one of the reasons that I am a board member of the ICAEW’s (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) learning and professional development board.
“I progressed quickly into a higher managerial role at ICS. I became head of the accounting team that services over 1,000 limited company clients and is the largest and most profitable department within the business. I was then promoted to the position of head of finance and am now also responsible for the finances of the ICS Group, with a turnover of over £45m.”
The judges’ comments stated: “Maggie has progressed from an apprentice to holding a senior role in a large team. She has implemented a number of strategies to improve efficiencies, represents SMEs on the ICAEW board, and mentors trainees within her own organisation.”
John Lyon, managing director of ICS, said: “Maggie has done a superb job in her role as head of finance and is a real asset to the ICS team. We’re all extremely proud of her and it’s fantastic that all her hard work and dedication to her role has been recognised with this award win.”
Established in 2002, ICS provides accountancy, administration and payroll services to contractors, freelancers and small businesses across the UK. Based on Caton Road, Lancaster, the firm currently employs 40 local people.