With the merger of BKD and DHG, two long-time national assurance, tax and advisory services firms into a new entity — FORVIS — the partner-owned entity is better positioned to help business decision-makers plan for what’s around the corner.
FORVIS, the name that comes from a combination of the words forward and vision, brings new opportunities to its two Nebraska offices. At both the Lincoln and Omaha offices, construction is underway to expand operations and give the 60-some employees in each location improved quarters to serve clients from every sector of the economy.
Managing Partner Tim J. Wilson, a Nebraska native and 20-year veteran with BKD, said the enhanced offices and new hires that will use them are simply one part of the larger story about FORVIS’ new brand identity and forward vision.
“By growing our geographic footprint we can offer increased depth in what we offer our client companies.”
In addition to Nebraska, FORVIS now has 68 offices in 27 states ranging from the Midwest with a heavy concentration of activity on the eastern seaboard and southeastern states. Offices abroad include the United Kingdom and the Cayman Islands.
FORVIS is owned by 530 of about 5,400 partners and team members who have built $1.4 billion in combined revenues.
Chairman Matt Snow, the former CEO of DHG, said that the merger has poised FORVIS for further growth due to a stronger focus on offering expanded advisory services and specialized industry intelligence that supplement the firm’s tax and assurance services.
Wilson said the robust resources and a commitment to innovation and problem solving should be a differentiating factor for FORVIS. He said additional client services are being introduced, but in a fashion that will enable the new company to maintain its nimbleness.
Wilson said the 120-some Nebraska-based employees of FORVIS are being coached to accept change and the opportunities for FORVIS to differentiate itself even further from the pack.
“I see a growth avenue in advisory services provided by emphasizing industry-specific insights,” he said.
Growth opportunities among the more than two dozen industry categories served in Nebraska could include technology, marketing/distribution and financial services. Wilson is also bullish on expanding work done for public sector entities, nonprofits and higher education.
“For these, regulatory issues abound, there’s a lot of oversight, and it seems they’re always in a compliance mode,” he added.
The bread and butter of FORVIS’ billings year around come from comprehensive assurance, tax, advisory and wealth management services.
Wilson said FORVIS is continuing the use of net promoter scores and surveys, which were previously used by DHG and BKD. Scores for the two Nebraska offices have been consistently high and on par with some of the most respected organizations and corporations nationally.
FORVIS Public Relations Manager Mike Brothers said the newly merged entity is aiming to maintain scores well above 40 on a 100-point scale – the industry average for accounting firms when customer service is measured. Most recently, FORVIS topped 80 on the 100-point scale.
“We’re laser-focused on maintaining this high standard going forward as we feel this will be a major differentiator for our firm as we enter the national Top 10,” he said, of Inside Public Accounting’s national ranking of the largest public accounting firms.
Campus Leadership Link
Wilson, a 1990 business administration graduate of Doane College where he majored in business administration and accounting, credits his opportunity to serve as a student liaison on the board of trustees of the Crete campus as important to his appreciation for the need to broaden the perspectives of college students.
Campus leadership activities result in professional doors being opened, he found.
Although FORVIS had just short of a dozen interns this summer, between the two Nebraska offices that number is larger during the regular school year.
“As we grow our facilities and there’s increased depth of what we offer, our presence on campuses will be important to us,” he said.