The last 3 years have been stretching, rewarding and varied. I joined Grant Thornton Financial Services Audit on the Graduate Scheme in August 2018, and couldn't have asked for a more enjoyable, valuable and educational start to my career.
Prior to joining Grant Thornton I had studied Geography at Durham University. I had been worried that most people would come from a Finance/Economics background however there was a range of degree backgrounds, as well as School Leavers, who joined alongside me. One of the great things about Grant Thornton is that there is a range of experiences, thoughts and backgrounds across and within teams.
As with any job it can be daunting to start a new role, especially with the addition of the ACA exams. However the onboarding process is fantastic; there was plenty of support, training and activities which help you really understand your role as well as meet your peer groups and department. Additionally there is a strong culture of support for the ACA exams from both Grant Thornton and the tuition provider.
There is exposure to a range of clients from very early on - I've really enjoyed learning about different business models from Private Equity to Asset Management to Pension Funds. I was also part of a team contracted to the National Audit Office to audit a Ministerial Department which was a really fantastic learning opportunity. I've really enjoyed being able to build relationships with different teams within FS, as well as the wider firm, in addition to building relationships with our clients.
There are a plethora of opportunities outside the 'day to day' role. There are peer group Representative roles and CLEARR representative roles; opportunities to become software champions; opportunities to be members of committees such as culture and social teams; as well as being an Inclusion Ally (which aims to make the workplace a more inclusive and diverse place).
My application process for the Graduate Scheme provided a real insight into the inclusive culture at Grant Thornton as well as the people, who were so friendly, approachable and helpful. Since joining, everyone who I have met and worked with, as well as the overall culture, has reinforced this initial experience and impression. The Financial Services Audit team have been incredibly supportive - there is a great support infrastructure in place as well as opportunities to socialise with the team and build strong working relationships.
Today I am an ACA exam qualified associate - since joining Grant Thornton I have built my technical knowledge, audit expertise and confidence. I am looking forward to getting my ACA qualification and becoming an Assistant Manager.