• Name: Patrick Wild
  • Job Title: ACA Trainee
  • Location: London
  • University: Birmingham
  • Degree: Sports, Exercise & Health Sciences
  • Areas of Specialism: Audit and Assurance
HW Fisher

Why did you choose a job in this profession?

Towards the end of the time at University, despite enjoying my degree and my time on placement, I realised that it did not satisfy everything that I wanted from a career. Specifically, I worked within the performance side of professional football, during which time I gradually became more interested in how the football club was run from a financial perspective, rather than how to perform urine testing! Following extensive research on various career paths towards the end of my degree, accountancy presented itself as an opportunity to gain a more meaningful well-rounded qualification, the financial expertise required to underpin successful businesses, and to forge an exciting career for myself in a profession with fantastic opportunities. The chance to work with businesses in a variety of different industries was also incredibly appealing in order to increase my understanding of industries that I have been less exposed to in the past.

How did you get your job at HW Fisher?

I stumbled across HW Fisher when researching accountancy careers online, and specifically completing the ACA qualification. I applied online which initially involves answering a series of questions about yourself. Then, I was invited to attend a group interview which was an enjoyable experience and involved completing a task in smaller groups of 3-4 people. If you are coming from a non-accountancy background like me – do not panic about this – as the firm are looking for more than just knowing how to file a set of accounts before you’ve even started! To emphasise this, after my group interview, I thought that my experiences were so different to the rest of the group that being called back for the one-to-one partner interview was incredibly unlikely – how wrong was I? My advice to anyone would be to just be yourself, that’s exactly how I got my job here.

What skills are useful in this profession?

Key skills that I find useful in this profession are having a keen eye for detail when working on audit files and having good communication skills. I feel that the latter is really important given the variety of people you will communicate with on a daily basis, ranging from clients to supervisors, to managers, to partners, and fellow trainees. I believe a willingness to learn and being inquisitive is also useful to ensure that you get the best out of this experience and the opportunity to take responsibility at an early point in your career.

Do you have any advice for anyone wanting to enter the profession?

I would say to make sure you have done plenty of research on the sector, and specifically the time commitment required towards studying for the ACA. If it was easy, everyone would be a chartered accountant, but that demonstrates why the career can be so rewarding. I would definitely find a way to speak to somebody already in the industry, so you can have an understanding of what to expect, but also do not worry if you are from a non-accountancy background like me.

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