1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
Working in and around Yorkshire. Office is based in Leeds but often we work on client sites. If too far to travel there and back in one day the job is classed as an away job and we have free hotel/expenses paid to work. So far I've worked in LDN, Manc, Bham, and even the joys of Hull and Grimsby! Responsibilities include: working with FD's and FC's to create the financial statements that represent the company and are submitted to companies house.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
As part of our employment we get to go to college and study towards the ACA qualification. Excel skills have sky rocketed. Vlookup, Pivot table, using Excel without a mouse. Large social group as started with 8 others, next in-take (Sept 18) there are 15 of them starting. So lots of new people to meet.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
Love working in a different team each week. Get to know each person on a really deep level when working with the same person for 1 week. Company culture is great, people always up for a pint after work or a run, or both if you're into that. I did a summer internship with GT before starting so already knew how good they were are throwing summer parties, no surprises there.
4. How valued do you feel by Grant Thornton?
My people manager [This section of the comment has been removed by a member of the RateMyApprenticeship Team because it did not meet our site terms and conditions] is amazing. Feels like more of a friend than a manager. At first I struggled when joining GT with the exams and work pressures, but she understood all of this and let me re-arrange my exams (at my benefit and GT's disadvantage) just so that it worked better for me, to help me pass them.
5. How well organised/structured is your programme?
The ACA programme, part of the ICAEW is one of the best. A world-wide recognised qualification of Accountancy. Once you have completed this you become a "Qualified Chartered Accountant" and can walk into finance jobs in industry, working with whatever interests you, OR, progress further up the ladder in GT (which offers a very competitive salary!)
6a. How much support do you receive from your training provider?
Everyone gets a personal mentor with the ACA training provider. They are there to help you arrange exams, adsive you on planning of these and assist you with all the admin side of things. The tutors are really great, punctual, funny, and down to earth. My uni lecturers could learn a thing or two from!
6b. How much support do you receive from your employer?
My people manager always gives me all the support I need and also my co-workings, other people that I started with. Always there if you're stuck with something or don't know how to do something. Someone can help, and it they can't, they find someone that can help you out to solve the problem!
7. How well does your salary/package meet your costs?
My salary is £20,500 / year. Which is competitive in the Leeds area. It's not the highest, but it's not the lowest. However it's worth knowing that for around 2.5/3 months of the year, I'm not actually at work, but rather studying in college or revising for my ACA exams. It's expected that the cost of this tuition, time off work, exams fees etc is over £9,000 / year.
8. Are there many opportunities outside of work?
Lots of company events. LCASS (Leeds Chartered Accountants Student Society) put on events, (pub crawls, end of year ball, G&T tasting, Pub quizzes) once a month. They also organise x2 balls per year where 400-500 people come to celebrate being part of the profession. GT also do lots of fun events, bowling, table tennis, 10k run's etc!
9. Would you recommend Grant Thornton to a friend?
Make sure you look up the CLEARR values and talk about them during interview. Don't pretend you know more than you do, we know that you don't full understand the job as you've never done it! Be yourself, at GT it's all about the people, we are not number crunches like part of the Big 4, we are people. Enjoy it and smile a lot.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to Grant Thornton?
Remember you are always being assessed... from 100m before you even get here until yo've left and are 100m away, you're being watched, like a hawk. Only joking but seriously be nice to the building reception (+ GT reception) and it'll work in your favour. Good luck and you can do it! :)