• Name: Jasper Waller-Toyne
  • Job Title: Audit Apprentice
  • Location: London
  • Areas of Specialism: Audit and Assurance

Why did you choose this profession?

At school I was into numerical subjects, so I was naturally drawn to finance work and an accountancy apprenticeship seemed a good way into this. I would get the same qualifications as I would at university, but I’d be earning money at the same time.

What attracted you to your role?

I was attracted to an Audit Accountancy Apprenticeship role because it gives you breadth and development in all areas of tax and the business side of accounting. I also find it really interesting to deep dive into a company and getting to the bottom of all the financial information. I’m not sure yet what I want to specialise in going forward, but this role has opened up a whole world of potential finance roles.

What was the application process like?

Quite simple really. I was looking at firms in a commutable area and applied online to Mercer & Hole. I then had a short phone interview which was very straightforward, a face-to-face interview which was more in-depth and assessments to test my numeracy and excel skills. I found that I didn’t need much technical knowledge – it was more about showing that I had the potential and the interviewers wanted to get to know me as a person.

What skills are useful in this profession?

As well as numeracy and excel skills, good time management is probably the most important skill for this job as with the apprenticeship you must balance your work and home life alongside fitting in time to study whilst making sure you are on top of the different projects you’ve got to do. Good communication skills are also essential as there are often situations where we need to explain complicated accounting procedures in a way in which clients will understand. At Mercer & Hole, we can often also deal with overseas clients where English is not their first language.

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

When you apply to firms – apply to lots to give yourself lots of choice as you need to be right for the firm and they have to be the right fit for you. It’s a great career to go into as people always need accountants and it just opens up a whole world of potential careers.

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