1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
Assistant Tax Advisor in EY's Research & Development Tax Team. I work with a range of clients from the large and famous to the small and unknown. We work with clients to discuss projects which they undertake which fall within the remit of the R&D Tax Relief schemes. Expenditure on qualifying projects entitle the client to tax relief. Clients may be Pharma/Biotech/F1 team/defence contractors etc. As a tax advisor it is my role to gather data from the clients accounting systems and use it to calculate expenditure on projects and calculate the amount of relief they are entitled to. I spend a lot of time in excel spreadsheets or on calls with clients to discuss their accounting systems and the technical projects they are undertaking.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
I am now very capable with excel, having learnt formulas I didn't even know existed before. I have sat the first of my accounting exams and am on the path to become ACA and CTA qualified which will make me a chartered accountant as well as a chartered tax advisor. On the job I am getting first hand experience of how accounting systems work in industry and also how accounting complications regarding the likes of intangible fixed assets can have wider implications.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
I am really enjoying my time at EY and expect to stay here after the programme is finished. My team are extremely friendly and I regard them as friends rather than colleagues. The culture at EY is very flexible allowing me to work as and when it suits me, provided my work is completed on time and to a good standard. I can work at home when this suits me if I have personal commitments to keep.
4. How valued do you feel by EY?
I feel very valued by EY. From the top down, the leadership want us to enjoy it, and within my team I feel as though I am an important asset whose help is really valued.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
I feel the programme is very well structure, with a set timetable of when exams are to be sat etc it makes it easy to plan around it.
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
I receive all the support I require - the tutors are always available to email questions and always happy to stay late after class to discuss specific questions. They have a genuine care and desire for you to pass your exams.
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
I receive all the support I need - my team are very flexible when it comes to exams, allowing me more time to complete work, working from home when I choose so I can fit more revision in after work and being flexible to allow me to take Annual Leave whenever I need to to revise.
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
I live at home with my parents outside London and my total bills for rent/car insurance/phone/travel etc come to around £700 a month. After this I am left with about £800 a month with which I buy breakfast and lunch every day at work and still have plenty of money to go out and buy things.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Definitely. People on my team are always looking for opportunities to socialise outside of work. On top of this, with so many school leavers within the firm, there are plenty of young people to socialise with too. I don't feel like I miss out on the uni experience too much as I have a good network of school leaver friends within EY, we always go out on a Friday night etc.
9a. Would you recommend EY to a friend? *
9b. Why? *
If accountancy based work is what you are looking to get into then this is definitely the way to go. From my experience looking into these schemes before applying, EY definitely offers the best programme of the big 4. You get paid to work, they pay for you to sit the accountancy qualifications, it's a win win. If you do accountancy at uni you still have to do the exams when you start work, so getting into work straight out of school really is a head start over your friends who go to uni.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to EY? *
Make sure you prepare for the interview thoroughly. convey to interviewers the best of you as this is a people business and personality really is a big selling point.
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