What made you choose UHY Hacker Young?
A key factor for me was definitely the size of UHY. I wanted to qualify in a growing medium-sized firm where you can gain exposure to a variety of clients but still keep the personal touch. As my role includes studying for the CSQS professional qualification via evening and weekend courses, I was looking to train with a firm who would recognise the challenges of this and support me, something which was clear from the outset with UHY. From my first interview I felt the culture UHY encourages matched my own personal aspirations to progress.
What is the atmosphere like in the office?
Great! Something I really like about UHY, being a medium-sized firm, is that in a short space of time you’ll be able to name every person in the London office. Of course, there are serious moments, with busy periods and tight deadlines, but we manage to achieve this balance between working hard and maintaining a positive, friendly atmosphere. The London office is full of lovely people and, as a group, the trainees are sociable and regularly have Friday evening socials as well as other events throughout the year.
What level of responsibility do you receive as a trainee?
Being part of a smaller team meant from day one you were exposed to clients’ statutory responsibilities and had direct interaction with them. From an early stage I was managing company incorporations and completing constitutional documents. I have now progressed to look after my own portfolio of clients, but you can always rely on senior team members to help you with more complicated company arrangements, for example; problematical share structures.
What advice would you give to a potential trainee?
Definitely do not underestimate the challenge of studying for a professional qualification whilst working full time. I only realise now just how much time you had to study when you were at university. Having said this, because all the trainees are going through this, there is a lot of support available. Also, there are things which studying alone cannot teach you, so do not underestimate the value of experience the seniors have.
How much interaction have you had with clients?
Due to the nature of my role, being slightly different to the accounting trainees, my interaction with clients is rarely face-to-face. However, from day one I have been in constant communication with clients via email and telephone, especially international companies. As I’ve progressed to look after my own portfolio, I have started to build relations with clients and can tailor procedures to how the individual prefers them. No two clients are the same; every day is a new challenge!