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  • Name: Ben Stuart
  • Job Title: Corporate Tax Adviser
  • Location: Aberdeen
  • University: Leeds
  • Degree: Philosophy
  • Type of Qualification: ACA
  • Areas of Specialism: Tax

I joined PwC shortly after graduating in 2007.
I was attracted by a career in Tax as it provided the opportunity for a varied and fast-paced career; with legislation constantly changing it certainly keeps you on your toes!
I also liked the idea that you can directly see the benefit your work provides to the client and knowing you have helped to save them money is a rewarding feeling.
I moved to Aberdeen, as I wanted to be involved with the energy industry. With Aberdeen being the ‘Energy capital of Europe’ we work with some very interesting and dynamic clients who operate all over the world, serving both the oil & gas and renewable energy markets.
This provides a significant international aspect to the work we perform.
Here is what a working week looks like for me:

Monday

A client is currently tendering for contracts in Algeria and has asked what the tax consequences of winning the work are. In order to answer the client’s queries I arrange a call with a contact in our PwC office in France who is an Algerian tax expert.
This is a common type of request, although no one had ever come across this particular scenario before. Clients of the firm often tender for contracts in various locations around the world, which presents a great opportunity to build a worldwide network of contacts.
After the call, I draft a memo to the client detailing these implications, which is then reviewed by a Manager.

Tuesday

After a busy group reporting season, many of my clients are now in the process of preparing their entity statutory accounts.
In the tax department our involvement in this process includes preparing the tax figures for the client’s accounts or working as part of the audit team.
Today I am preparing the tax figures for inclusion in the statutory accounts for a client with several UK subsidiaries. In order to progress the figures, I draft an email to the client requesting some additional information.

Wednesday

Another client has recently completed a project in Canada and is required to file a Canadian tax return; I am currently liaising with our PwC office in Calgary to ensure this process is completed on time.
I spend the afternoon collating the information required before calling the Calgary office to provide them with a status update. As there is quite a significant time difference between the UK and Canada, I wait until the end of the day to call my contact.

Thursday

Today the office has arranged a breakfast seminar for our clients. The purpose of this event is to discuss recent updates to all forms of UK taxation in light of the recent Budget. Events like these provide a great opportunity to speak with our clients in a less formal setting.
After the presentation I am approached by a client, who expresses interest in several of the areas discussed.
I agree to provide them with further information on my return to the office. I spend the rest of the morning updating the tax figures I was working on during Tuesday with additional information, which has come in from the client.
As part of my role in one of the firm’s specialist networks I attend a conference call with colleagues across the UK to discuss various points of interest, including a piece of legislation that has recently been enacted which affects many of the firm’s clients.
I am asked to ensure my colleagues are aware of the impact this will have on their clients.

Friday

I spend part of the morning reading technical updates. The firm is excellent at circulating emails detailing recent changes in legislation, updates on case law and HMRC proposals that may affect our clients.
I make a note of issues which may be of interest to my clients and discuss them with the managers on each client team.
At lunchtime I head to a local restaurant for lunch with some colleagues. We have a few regular haunts fairly close to the office and it’s always a nice way to end the week.
I spend the afternoon with a work placement student, discussing a career in corporate taxation and the examination process.

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