Quarterly Tax Update: Recruitment Trends Q4

Quarterly Tax Update: Recruitment Trends Q4

Eleanor Turner, Rutherford Cross’ Tax Specialist, briefly reviews the recruitment trends of the Scottish market last quarter.

Professional Services

As expected, demand for tax professionals far outstripped supply in 2019 Q4 with active candidates receiving offers from multiple firms in addition to tempting counter-offers. Edinburgh saw a need for Senior Managers, with several firms looking to add experience to their Financial Services practices. Highest demand was for Corporate Tax and Transfer Pricing professionals, with more demand seen at senior levels.

Promotions / Moves include:

Suzanne Brownie of Johnston Carmichael, Edinburgh was promoted to Director. Suzanne leads the Transaction Taxes team and has responsibility for a portfolio of entrepreneurial businesses.

Mazars saw several internal promotions – in Edinburgh, Jennifer Allison was promoted to Partner and Sean Cockburn was promoted to Director. Jennifer is an entrepreneurial tax specialist while Sean focuses on personal tax matters for families, entrepreneurs, trustees and partners. In Glasgow, Neil Strong was promoted to Partner where he focuses on tax advisory projects for individuals and national/international businesses.

Chiene + Tait promoted the firm’s first Inverness recruit, Jackie Fraser, who focuses on Personal and Business Tax to Partner, which demonstrates the significant growth of the office since C+T opened it three years ago.

Derek Gemmell has been appointed as Head of Innovations Tax at Anderson Anderson & Brown. Derek has been with the firm for eleven years and will now play a leading role in continuing to develop and grow AAB’s specialist R&D Tax Relief and Patent Box services.

Campbell Dallas has promoted Kirsty Murray to Tax Partner in the Edinburgh office. Kirsty has extensive knowledge of corporate and business tax and is a specialist in the technology, R&D and performing arts sectors.

George Stevenson has joined Shepherd and Wedderburn’s Private Client team as a Consultant in the Aberdeen office, with a North of Scotland remit. George specialises in all aspects of estate and inheritance tax planning.

RSM have strengthened their Capital Allowances offering by recruiting new Director Paul Smith. Paul, who joins from KPMG, will head up the team in Scotland and Northern Ireland.


While in-house tax roles tend to be few and far between in Scotland, the last quarter of the year saw much activity in the drinks industry, with several household names looking to hire key tax leadership positions in both the East and the West. Companies looked for those with broad tax experience across Corporate Tax, VAT and Excise Duty and were able to choose from a strong pool of talent.

There was also an increase in demand for VAT professionals at all levels, particularly in Financial Services and the Pharmaceutical industry, which attracted ‘first-movers’ from Practice.

Promotions / Moves include:

Graham Metcalf joined EnQuest as Group Head of Tax in October. Graham joined from Shell, having previously been with PwC and Moore Stephens.

Wood promoted Andy McLean to Group Head of Tax & Treasury. Andy has been with the company since 2008, through several mergers/acquisitions.


Eleanor Turner is Rutherford Cross’ Tax specialist and recruits at all levels across both Industry and Professional Services. Contact her on 07799 462326 / [email protected].