Name: Luke Imms
Role: Senior Consultant
Think if you start working with us, you’ll be dealing with tech heads who’ll blind you with science? Think again! Our Headstart financial performance management solution is rolled out by accountants and finance professionals who understand the needs of the people who’ll be using it. In this series of profiles we introduce you to the various team members you might be dealing with, starting with our Senior Consultant, Luke Imms.
Luke’s role at Bistech
Luke joined Bistech in 2011, and says this is the longest he’s ever stayed in a role. “The variable nature of the work keeps me here,” he says. “I would go crazy if I was just doing one thing the whole time.”
Luke’s varied role at Bistech involves scoping, designing, developing and deploying Financial Performance Management solutions. “Bistech have developed the Headstart solution based on the common needs of many organisations,” he says, “and we tweak it further to meet the more specific requirements of a particular company, industry or business problem.”
Luke commences each project with a detailed needs-gathering before scoping and designing bespoke solutions. “The solution for a manufacturing organisation may look very different to that of a services organisation” says Luke, “No financial solution can be developed without first understanding the operational side of the business. Every customer is different and so we need to approach them as such.”
Luke’s road to Bistech
Luke originally completed a BSc degree, majoring in Mathematics. That stimulated his interest in business, and he went on to complete a second degree in Finance. Earlier in his career he worked at Tabcorp as a business analyst, and was then involved in modelling the Virgin Blue loyalty program (Velocity) when the airline was starting their long-haul operations. Prior to working for Bistech, Luke was an Estimator for a mining contractor, Macmahon, where he worked on tenders and modelled mining operations.
It was at Tabcorp that Luke came into contact with a consultant, Justin Hoareau, who is now a Bistech director. At Virgin Blue he worked with another consultant who also worked at Bistech. “When the time was right they both contacted me and said there’s a job here if you want it,” says Luke. “I haven’t looked back.”
While his role may have changed, Luke still maintains his CPA certification. “It’s a good thing to have. It shows people I’m a legitimate accountant, not just an IT consultant. Though I have gained some software certifications while I’ve been at Bistech.”
The best things about working at Bistech
Luke loves puzzles and board games – and it’s the problem-solving side of his role that he enjoys most. “Every business has its own problem to solve, and I love the challenge of this,” he says. “I enjoy the challenge of looking at a P&L and cashflow, saying ‘that number looks weird, what’s going on?’ and then investigating.”
The variety also appeals to Luke. “I’m not the type of accountant to do month end. I prefer project roles that are fast-moving and outcome-driven, rather than transactional and process-focused.” Luke’s Bistech projects will see him spend a couple of months with one client. “Enough to see the impact and the value of the change we implement,” he says, “but then we have the opportunity to move onto another challenge. That’s not to say we don’t check in with existing customers – there are always ongoing touch points, and therefore the opportunity to work with more than just one client at a time.”
He also enjoys learning new things via the clients he meets who are experts in their industry. “I’ve been lucky enough to be involved with designing and implementing FPM solutions across such a wide range of sectors – mining, construction, manufacturing, legal services, lab services, racing, not for profit… it’s an ever-expanding list”.
“What makes Bistech a great place to work is its small business feel,” Luke says. “There are only about 20 of us, so it’s not heavy on politics and policy for the sake of it. I like spending time here, adding value to customers, and being able to work autonomously, to develop the right model for a client. But there’s always assistance when we need it.” Ideas, he says, are bounced around the team, and solutions are shared so everyone learns. “The communication is good and that makes us a good team.”
Life outside Bistech
Away from Bistech, it’s all about family for Luke. He has two small children, aged 4 and 7, loves family camping holidays. With his own project of a new house build behind him, Luke’s ‘spare time’ is now spent landscaping.