This is a guest post by Royal Holloway student Sharon Malhi who is on the BSc Management with Accounting (Year in Business) degree programme and is doing an Accounting Rotation placement with Menzies LLP.
I am currently doing my placement at Menzies LLP, a top 20 chartered accountancy firm who provide accountancy and advisory services. Menzies has several offices across Surrey, Hampshire and London and I work in the Heathrow office which is based in Egham. I joined Menzies last August and my role is a Rotation Placement student. My role involves working in 4 different departments; Accounts, Tax, Outsourcing and Audit. Prior to starting my placement, I knew that I wanted to pursue accounting as a future career and my placement year has provided me with invaluable experience.
What attracted me to apply to Menzies’ placement programme was that they offered a chance to rotate between different departments. Accountancy as an industry has many fields and being given the chance to gain experience in these different fields has been one of my favourite things about my placement so far. I have continually been able to learn new skills and gain new knowledge.
· Accounts - I started off my placement within the Accounts department. Here my main job role was to produce financial statements for small to medium enterprises. It was really good to be able to apply what I’d previously learnt in my university accounting modules to practical work.
· Tax - My role in Tax involved preparing individual and company tax returns. I found working in the Tax department particularly interesting as there were lots of rules and regulations to learn when looking an individual’s tax liability.
· Outsourcing – I have spent each quarter end month (October, January, April and July) working in the Outsourcing department. Outsourcing involves companies using accounting firms to complete various accounting procedures such as bookkeeping and producing management accounts. My main task in this department was to produce and submit VAT returns.
· Audit – I am currently working in the Audit department and Audit involves examining companies’ financial reports to ensure that the information presented is a true and accurate reflection of the companies’ financial position. The audits that I have worked on so far have mainly been in-house however I have had the opportunity to visit a client’s site and do an on-site audit. I have been able to build up excellent client relationships skills which I will be able to use in the future.
Company Culture- I have been fortunate enough to work with a great team of people. Our office puts on various social events such as golf days, bowls tournaments and office nights out. Next month is the annual Menzies’ ball in central London where all employees from every office are invited for a night of dinner and drinks. Starting your first professional job can be scary but I promise it is fun too!
As I am almost coming up to the end of my placement, I can safely say that doing a placement year has been so fulfilling and I now feel more prepared for working life after graduation next year. The key piece of advice I would give is that persistence is key! I didn’t secure my placement until after my summer exams but now looking back I couldn’t have imagined myself working anywhere else.
Check out Sharon's video profile talking about her first few months on placement. It can also be found on the Menzies' Career page.