1. Please give an overview of your role and what this involves on a day-to-day basis:
Due to the nature of audit, the role is heavily focused on scrutinising the various sections of a set of financial statements. Testing varies depending the type of audit and the specific testing that the client requires. There are normally various sections of the file one is responsible for. The job involves being based at client site and in the office - this means that face-to-face communication with clients is common.
2. Have you learnt any new skills or developed existing skills?
Due to the trainee role that an assistant has, both external and internal training courses are provided. Internal training courses usually arise with progression and these can be focused on business skills, bookkeeping to policies and regulations. External courses are dependant on the type of qualification one will ascertain but over the duration of the qualification, it is expected that one will have an in-depth understanding of accountancy, audit and business.
3. To what extent do you enjoy your programme?
Since the role lends itself well to being out on client site on a daily basis, it is enjoyable to see how different businesses operate and function. It is also rewarding being based at different locations with opportunities to travel, meet new people and learn about all kinds of different companies.
4. How well organised/structured is your programme?
Being a school leaver, the programme is structured in two parts and these consist of working towards the AAT and ACA qualifications (this differs depending what department) This is split over five years with roughly two years being spent studying for the AAT qualification and three years for the ACA component.
5. How much support do you receive from your employer?
Upon joining at the firm, you are assigned a buddy. Their purpose is to ease you into the few stages of the apprenticeship. The intranet provides support on all areas of the company varying form software to training courses and documents. There are reviews are 6 months to discuss performance and any other queries.
6. How much support do you receive from your training provider when working towards your qualifications?
We have quarterly reviews with the training provider and the provider also checks in when you are completing a course. For every course, you are provided with the trainer's details and you are also welcome to provide feedback at the end of the course. You are provided with plenty of materials whilst studying such as question books, online practice and course videos.
7. How well do you feel that your qualification (through your training provider) helps you to perform better in your role?
Being an assistant in a trainee role, you are not expected to have a great deal of knowledge prior to working at the firm. This will be learnt through the external courses provided by the training company. Much of what you do on a daily basis is reflective of what you learn at college.
8. Are there extra-curricular activities to get involved in at your work? (For example, any social activities, sports teams, or even professional networking events.)
Every now and then there are emails and invitations to networking events. Internal socials are more common, we have Sports Day, the Christmas Party and there are other events usually held around quarter ends and year end. There are numerous societies which you can also get involved in at RSM.
9a. Would you recommend RSM to a friend?
I would recommend RSM to a friend because as RSM are a middle-tier firm, you get exposure to all sorts of different clients. This is not limited to a certain sector and could include charities, colleges, corporates etc. There is also a relaxed culture at RSM which is shown throughout offices.
10. What tips or advice would you give to others applying to RSM?
I would ensure that they are familiar with RSM's position in relation to other firms (mid-tier) and make sure to know what makes RSM different. I would also encourage them to research the qualifications they are studying so that they understand what they are working towards whilst at RSM
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