PwC announces closure of 40-strong Hull office

26 November 2018 Consultancy.uk

Big Four professional services firm PwC has continued its period of altering regional presences with the news that it will close its Hull office in 2020. The Humberside office currently employs 40 staff, who are expected to be merged with PwC’s larger centre in Leeds.

With the UK facing a potentially turbulent few years on the back of continuing Brexit uncertainty, many firms are seeking external advice on their business plan for the coming period. To better match this morphing regional need, PwC has been working to expand or consolidate its operations across the UK to better match the demands of clients in each area.

Earlier in the year, the firm said it would grow its presence in the UK’s second city in 2019, moving to a new office in Birmingham. However, the firm is expected to close six regional offices: two internal memos leaked to the British media revealed PwC’s intent to close offices in Sheffield, Plymouth, Liverpool, Norwich, Swansea and Dungannon, in Northern Ireland. Sheffield, in particular, was a surprise member of the list, having only been opened in 2014.

PwC announces closure of 40-strong Hull office

Now, the auditing and advisory giant has confirmed it is closing its Hull office in 2020. The company employs 40 people at its Humber Quays offices in the Marina, and has announced that it will now merge these roles with its larger regional branch in Leeds. According to PwC, no jobs will be lost as a result of this manoeuvre, and clients will continue to be served across the region. The move is forecast to complete by 2020, having already begun in the spring. This has seen around half of the staff at PwC in Hull already relocate.

PwC said the move would “bring people and technology together to deliver a broader range of services to clients.” The firm further clarified that the announcement reflects the firm’s continued investment in a number of regions across the country, including its Reading technology industry hub, and expansions in Bristol, Belfast, Edinburgh and Manchester. Meanwhile, Hull has not entirely lost its PwC presence, as the firm has stressed that some of the staff will be working remotely from home, and could still be based in the city.

Commenting on the news, a PwC spokesperson said, “This relocation of staff from our Hull office reflects a dynamic client and market environment, which means we’re constantly reviewing the way we deliver services to our clients. We are committed to supporting our clients across the UK and will continue to provide a broad range of advice to clients on their issues and opportunities, ranging from Brexit and developing export markets to cyber security and exploiting the potential of technology.”

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US change management consultancy opens office in London

23 April 2019 Consultancy.uk

One year after UK consultancy Thought Provoking Consulting invested in American change management firm Change 4 Growth, it has opened its first international office in the UK. Change 4 Growth’s new London locale will see the company look to supply organisational transformation solutions crafted over the last several years in the US to British clients.

Specialising in transformational change, American retail boutique consultancy Change 4 Growth (C4G) offers an expansive range of services. This includes organisational change management, culture alignment and engagement, leadership development, training and e-learning and recruitment of staff support. Well-known retail brands such as Abercrombie & Fitch, American Eagle, Chico’s, Eddie Bauer and Ann Taylor are already among C4G’s clients, but since receiving investment from Thought Provoking Consulting in early 2018, the company has been keen to pursue expansion of its own.

Speaking at the time of the deal, Beth Thomas, CEO of C4G, commented, "I’m so excited to be working with Thought Provoking Consulting... The move will allow us to tap into a breadth of retail expertise and help our clients find solutions that are critical in this age in areas such as pricing, promotions, planning, product development and supply chain."

US change management consultancy opens office in London

In 2019, this has seen the Ohio-headquartered consultancy announce the opening of its first international office in London. Led by UK native and Managing Director, David Lucas, the base in Britain’s capital will bring the firm’s holistic service to clients in Europe looking deal with change at every level within their organisations.

Commenting via his LinkedIn profile, Lucas said, “At a time of huge technological upheaval, the importance of organisational and cultural change, married with operational speed and agility, has never been greater. Achieving that balance between people, process and technology for the digital era is the burning platform for most organisations…The C4G team… offers a spectrum of change and re-alignment capabilities and can bring proven approaches, methodologies and solutions to support the UK market.”

In the US, C4G has been able to tap into the fact that disengagement and unhappiness at work have become an epidemic across multiple sectors, resulting in poor business performance and bottom line results. With the UK’s high streets currently faltering due to an influx of e-commerce competition, Brexit pressures, and stagnating real wages, C4G will likely also find fertile ground for its retail-focused transformation services on both sides of the Atlantic.

Remarking on the firm’s arrival ‘across the pond’, Thomas concluded, “Many of our clients are global organisations who have facilities and employees around the world, and as an avid admirer of Britain’s innovative retail community, it has long been my intention to open a C4G office in the UK… With David Lucas, who brings a proven track record of transformational change at the helm and our sister company, Thought Provoking Consulting… we’re more excited than ever to explore the synergies to be discovered in having a UK powerhouse to support not only the retail sector but all industries.”