ACCA SBL - Strategic Business Leader -

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ACCA SBL – Strategic Business Leader


The SBL exam is designed to mirror the workplace and presents the student with real-world challenges. Students will complete a number of tasks and must demonstrate that they have the right technical, ethical and professional skills to add value to the organisations they work in.

SKU: ACCA-SBL Category:


Studying ACCA Accounting

Terry Lawless (PAT lecturer in SBL, AA & AAA) spoke to us about the new exam:

The SBL (Strategic Business Leader) exam is designed to mirror the workplace and presents the student with real-world challenges. Students will complete a number of tasks and must demonstrate that they have the right technical, ethical and professional skills to add value to the organisations they work in.

The syllabus brings together core areas from governance, risk and strategy, links to other leadership areas such as organisational control, innovation and change management – and uses new technologies and data analytics.

All of these elements combine to produce a powerful, unique way of assessing whether a student is ready to hit the ground running when they start their career. ”

See ACCA’s Rail Co Case Study for an overview of SBL.

About the Lecturer

Terry Lawless is a member of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and has extensive Financial Services experience; having worked for leading Irish financial institutions for many years.

He also has considerable lecturing experience having delivered various papers in both professional and undergraduate qualifications with a number of Approved Learning Partners. Read more…

Why choose PAT for your ACCA exam preparation?

  • We are an ACCA Platinum Approved Learning Partner
  • You can access lecturers from anywhere; lectures will be streamed live online from our Dublin City Centre classrooms
  • We have a unique exam-focused approach with a combination of lectures, revision days and exam preparation sessions (EPS’s)
  • Through regular mock exams and corrected homework, our lecturers will offer structured feedback and support
  • You’ll receive access to tuition materials online as well as recordings of the lectures
  • Sitting a CBE assessed paper for the first time? Our exam-focused approach will get you CBE-ready
  • Strategic Business Leader Syllabus & Exam


The aim of Strategic Business Leader (SBL) is to demonstrate organisational leadership and senior consultancy or advisory capabilities and relevant professional skills, through the context of an integrated case study.

Objective of the Syllabus

Apply excellent leadership and ethical skills to set the ‘tone from the top’ and promote a positive culture within the organisation, adopting a whole organisation perspective in managing performance and value creation.

Evaluate the effectiveness of the governance and agency system of an organisation and recognise the responsibility of the board or other agents towards their stakeholders, including the organisation’s social responsibilities and the reporting implications.

Evaluate the strategic position of the organisation against the external environment and the availability of internal resources, to identify feasible strategic options.

Analyse the risk profile of the organisation and of any strategic options identified, within a culture of responsible risk management.

Select and apply appropriate information technologies and data analytics, to analyse factors affecting the organisation’s value chain to identify strategic opportunities and implement strategic options within a framework of robust IT security controls.

Evaluate management reporting and internal control and audit systems to ensure compliance and the achievement of organisation’s objectives and the safeguarding of organisational assets.

Apply high level financial techniques from Skills exams in the planning, implementation and evaluation of strategic options and actions.

Enable success through innovative thinking, applying best in class strategies and disruptive technologies in the management of change; initiating, leading and organising projects,while effectively managing talent and other business resources.

Apply a range of Professional Skills in addressing requirements within the Strategic Business Leader examination and in preparation for, or to support, current work experience.


The Strategic Business Leader (SBL) examination is based on an integrated case study containing a number of assignments which will vary at each examination. These assignments or tasks may require the candidate to take on different roles, depending on the situation. The number of marks allocated to all these assignments or the sub-parts of these will add up to 100 in total. Within the total marks available, there are 20 Professional Skills marks. Usually each task will contain some professional skills marks which may vary by examination, depending on the requirements. All tasks must be completed. The examination is of 4 hours duration, but this includes Reading, Planning and Reflection time (RPRT). This time can be used flexibly at any time during the exam.

To read more about SBLacca  and access past exam papers please click here.

Should you have any further questions, please contact us at or on 01-8352963

Study Mode

Full Course (Early Start) – March 2021 exam, Full Course (Late Start) – March 2021 exam, Revision Only – March 2021 exam, Full Course – June 2021 exam, Revision Only – June 2021 exam, Repeat