Financial reporting and accounting advisory services
You trust your external auditor to deliver not only a high-quality, independent audit of your financial statements but to provide a range of support, including assessing material risks, evaluating internal controls and raising awareness around new and amended accounting standards.
Accounting Standards for Private Enterprises
Get the clear financial picture you need with the accounting standards team at Grant Thornton LLP. Our experts have extensive experience with private enterprises of all sizes in all industries, an in-depth knowledge of today’s accounting standards, and are directly involved in the standard-setting process.
International Financial Reporting Standards
Whether you are already using IFRS or considering a transition to this global framework, Grant Thornton LLP’s accounting standards team is here to help.
Accounting Standards for Not-for-Profit Organizations
From small, community organizations to large, national charities, you can count on Grant Thornton LLP’s accounting standards team for in-depth knowledge and trusted advice.
Public Sector Accounting Standards
Working for a public-sector organization comes with a unique set of requirements for accounting and financial reporting. Grant Thornton LLP’s accounting standards team has the practical, public-sector experience and in-depth knowledge you need.
Tax planning and compliance
Whether you are a private or public organization, your goal is to manage the critical aspects of tax compliance, and achieve the most effective results. At Grant Thornton, we focus on delivering relevant advice, and providing an integrated planning approach to help you fulfill compliance obligations.
Research & development, government incentives
Are you developing innovative processes or products, undertaking experimentation or solving technological problems? If so, you may qualify to claim SR&ED tax credits. This Canadian federal government initiative is designed to encourage and support innovation in Canada. Our R&D professionals are a highly-trained, diverse team of practitioners that are engineers, scientists and specialized accountants.
Keeping track of changes and developments in GST/HST, Quebec sales tax and other provincial sales taxes across Canada, can be a full-time job. The consequences for failing to adequately manage your organization’s sales tax obligations can be significant - from assessments, to forgone recoveries and cash flow implications, to customer or reputational risk.
Global mobility services
In today’s competitive and global marketplace, your employee mobility strategy is a critical factor for success. International opportunities are key to attracting top talent and instilling a global mindset across your organization. Your people truly are your most valuable asset, and as your expatriate workforce continues to grow, a seamless global mobility program is essential to achieving your overall business goals.
US corporate tax
The United States has a very complex and regulated tax environment, that may undergo significant changes. Cross-border tax issues could become even more challenging for Canadian businesses looking for growth and prosperity in the biggest economy in the world.
US personal tax
Whether your business is only beginning to sell to US customers, or US customers represent the core of your business, anticipating and dealing knowledgeably with the US tax environment is critical to your bottom line. Our full-service US corporate tax group can help in all tax aspects of doing business in the US. Given high US corporate tax rates, don't be surprised by a US tax liability only to find out that there were planning opportunities available to reduce it.
While there is great opportunity for businesses looking to expand globally, organizations are under increasing tax scrutiny. Regardless of your company’s size and level of international involvement—whether you’re working abroad, investing, buying and selling, borrowing or manufacturing—doing business beyond Canada’s borders comes with its fair share of tax risks.
Transfer pricing is a complex area of corporate taxation that is concerned with the intra-group pricing of goods, services, intangibles, and financial instruments. Transfer pricing has become a critical governance issue for companies, tax authorities and policy makers, and represents a principal risk area for multinationals.
Succession & estate planning
Like many private business owners today, you’ve spent your career building and running your business successfully. Now you’re faced with deciding on a successor—a successor who may or may not want your direct involvement and share your vision.
Tax Reporting & Advisory
The financial and tax reporting obligations of public markets and global tax authorities take significant resources and investment to manage. This requires calculating global tax provision estimates under US GAAP, IFRS, and other frameworks, and reconciling this reporting with tax compliance obligations.
Our transactions group takes a client-centric, integrated approach, focused on helping you make and implement the best financial strategies. We offer meaningful, actionable and holistic advice to allow you to create value, manage risks and seize opportunities. It’s what we do best: help great organizations like yours grow and thrive.
We bring a wide range of services to both individuals and businesses – including shareholders, executives, directors, lenders, creditors and other advisors who are dealing with a corporation experiencing financial challenges.
Market-driven expertise in investigation, dispute resolution and digital forensics
Viruses. Phishing. Malware infections. Malpractice by employees. Espionage. Data ransom and theft. Fraud. Cybercrime is now a leading risk to all businesses.
Running a business is challenging and you need advice you can rely on at anytime you need it. Our team dives deep into your issues, looking holistically at your organization to understand your people, processes, and systems needs at the root of your pain points. The intersection of these three things is critical to develop the solutions you need today.
Updates for creditors, limited partners, investors and shareholders.
Builders And Developers
Every real estate project starts with a vision. We help builders and developers solidify that vision, transform it into reality, and create value.
Rental Property Owners And Occupiers
In today’s economic climate, it’s more important than ever to have a strong advisory partner on your side.
Real Estate Service Providers
Your company plays a key role in the success of landlords, investors and owners, but who is doing the same for you?
There’s no business quite like mining. It’s volatile, risky and complex – but the potential pay-off is huge. You’re not afraid of a challenge: the key is finding the right balance between risk and reward. Whether you’re a junior prospector, a senior producer, or somewhere in between, we’ll work with you to explore, discover and extract value at every stage of the mining process.
Oil & gas
The oil and gas industry is facing many complex challenges, beyond the price of oil. These include environmental issues, access to markets, growing competition from alternative energy sources and international markets, and a rapidly changing regulatory landscape, to name but a few.
The world is changing at a breathtaking pace, making it challenging for even the most deep-pocketed organizations to keep up. For charities and not-for-profits (CNPO)—organizations notorious for red tape, limited financial resources and low-risk appetites—this rapidly-shifting landscape can be downright overwhelming.
Yet, as many CNPO CEOs recognize, standing still is not an option. To thrive in this new reality, CNPOs must become more agile by rethinking existing processes, frameworks and organizational structures, and implementing a forward-thinking vision flexible enough to respond to obstacles, and opportunities, on the turn of a dime.
Of course, identifying the need for increased flexibility doesn’t mean the path to agile will be easy to navigate. In the CNPO space, CEOs must not only focus on modernizing their own toolbox, but must also encourage their board to do the same. Earlier this year, we sat down with CEOs from successful CNPOs to discuss how to become more agile in today’s landscape—and explore the unique barriers and opportunities that arise when you’re accountable to a board.
While each member of our roundtables had unique experiences and insights to bring to the table, all seemed to agree that the first step in establishing an agile CNPO is creating an environment where both CEOs and boards enable change. For many, this means working together to clearly define both parties’ roles and responsibilities. For instance, the board should be making high-level decisions regarding an organization’s vision and strategy—and, as such, shouldn’t be bogged down with too many details of the day-to-day operations. In a similar token, CEOs should have clear parameters governing how they operate—parameters created and approved by the board.
While such role definitions are unquestionably important in helping organizations move swiftly, they’re just one piece of the puzzle. To effectively reduce red tape and become more nimble, CNPO CEOs must leverage the CEO/board relationship to uncover new ways to plan for the future, foster innovation and maximize limited resources.
If you’d like to learn more about how your CNPO can meet changing market demands by becoming more agile, we recommend reading our recent thought leadership piece, Can you make your company more agile?
It can be challenging to plan for the future when you have no idea what the future may hold. That said, members of our roundtable still agreed that a strategic plan holds merit in today’s CNPO environment—although it may look different than those of the past.
Above all, CNPOs should prioritize agility when building a modern strategic plan. Essentially, this means viewing agility as a tactic to help achieve your vision—and making sure there’s leeway to stray from the plan if new opportunities, or obstacles, arise. Since this is a rather non-traditional approach to planning, CEOs would be wise to prioritize open communication with the board when crafting—and implementing—such a plan, so as to proactively set expectations.
Simplicity is also key when it comes to planning, as a long-winded and long-term strategic plan can quickly lose relevance. Instead, you want to keep it as short and sweet as possible—potentially even making it synonymous with your organization’s core purpose. One organization at our roundtable did just that—it offered a snapshot of its strategic plan that it kept on the wall at all management and board meetings. This simplified version was then used to guide decisions as they arose.
Finally, it’s critical that organizations treat their strategic plans as living documents. They should be updated regularly—with progress marked in red, yellow and green—and their purpose should be to keep everyone focused and on the same page. Additionally, you want to focus on measuring the value and impact of specific actions—not just the number of donors you’re acquiring—which will help ensure you’re fulfilling your organization’s mission and not straying off-course. A few participants suggested that, to help in this endeavour, CEOs may want to change their agenda formats to encourage both boards of directors and boards of governors to spend no more than 30 percent of their meetings on reporting (which focuses on the past) and the remainder of the time discussing how to address future change.
It’s hard to be agile when you’re not the decision maker. Because many CEOs require board approval to act, fostering innovation in an organization—and taking on the risk that accompanies it—can be challenging. Yet, if CNPOs hope to become agile, they will have to accept that innovation is part of that journey—and increase their risk tolerance accordingly.
That means many CEOs will have to assume the position of “risk taker”—encouraging the board to see the merits of change while simultaneously assuming the potential for failure. The secret to success, according to the CEOs we interviewed, is to veer the board’s attention away from the risk at hand, and instead focus on the risk of remaining stagnant. When you focus on the latter—and brainstorm possible solutions to overcome these risks—new endeavours become easier to swallow.
That said, CEOs can’t succeed at this task if they haven’t established trust with their board and team. That’s why it’s important to do your legwork by researching industry trends, identifying pertinent demographic shifts and networking with individuals who can help you think outside the box. You must also adopt a leadership style that promotes the facilitation of ideas.
Part of this involves keeping an open mind and adopting a more democratic approach to leadership. But it also involves implementing strategies to maximize team performance. One CEO found it helpful to encourage his people to achieve an overly-ambitious goal in a bid to teach his team to challenge the status quo—a skill that is becoming increasingly valuable, particularly as marketing and fundraising teams struggle to appeal to Millennial donors. By showing his team that no goal or idea was too far-fetched, he was able to foster innovation and customize strategies to meet the changing needs of the organization’s stakeholders
It’s a universal truth in the CNPO space: the longer a CEO’s list of accomplishments, the higher the expectations. But in today’s environment, where every dollar spent on administrative costs is scrutinized by donors, CEOs are often expected to build on their previous achievements with little to no resources. Faced with rapidly-evolving technological advancements—and a faster pace of business—CEOs need to communicate to the board, and stakeholders, that this is no longer feasible. For an organization to thrive, investment is critical.
That said, there are some steps CNPOs can take to maximize their existing resources. For one, CEOs can revise recruitment efforts to ensure they hire a strong team to move the organization into the future. Perhaps this means hiring outside your industry or employing new graduates. Maybe it involves building a team based on a skills matrix—looking at a candidate’s ability to connect with others or execute effectively, for instance. Or maybe it involves looking for glaring gaps in your existing team and identifying positions that need to be filled accordingly. Whatever approach you take to put your best team on the field, the end goal should be to create a team that you trust completely—with the right mix of honour, skills and passion—and one you don’t have to micromanage.
CEOs can also maximize their limited resources by re-examining the organization from top to bottom. With a strong team behind them—and a willingness to maintain an open mind—it may be possible to identify inefficiencies or reimagine existing processes, strategies and frameworks that will stretch financial resources further. This is also an opportunity for CEOs to reflect inwardly, re-examine their leadership style and identify (and strengthen) gaps in their existing skillsets. Some of the leaders we spoke to found something as simple as scheduling downtime—creating space to think and cultivate ideas—can dramatically improve a CEO’s performance.
When looking toward the future, a simple saying came to our participants’ minds: “What got you here won’t get you there.” While the future remains uncertain, it’s clear that if CNPOs hope to continue making an impact, they will have to veer away from the way things have always been done in favour of a new, agile path forward. This will involve adopting a new approach to planning, embracing risk a little more readily, uncovering new ways to maximize existing resources and boosting organizational investment.