What did you study in university?
I studied accounting and finance because it allowed me to pursue various career paths across multiple industries. I would advise people who wish to go into professional services to pick subjects like auditing, tax, financial management and corporate finance.
Tell us a little about your background.
Being able to work with two of the largest professional services firms in the world has provided me with a steep learning curve, from which I am able to develop myself more quickly compared to my peers. In addition, being able to service clients in some of the largest organisations in the world appealed to me. Even at a junior level, I was involved in meetings with the senior management of various corporations and this provided me with fantastic networking opportunities.
What do you do in your job?
My current role requires me to perform internal audits, provide risk management and business continuity management services to clients. As a consultant, my responsibilities are to ensure that interviews with process owners are conducted, sample testing is performed and an overall opinion on the operating effectiveness and efficiency of key controls can be made.
What do you like most about your job?
The extensive travel opportunities! I’m fortunate to have worked on engagements across multiple industries in Abu Dhabi, Sri Lanka, Nepal and Dubai, just to name a few. Being exposed to various industries as well as being able to travel with colleagues my age who share my interests makes the experience very rewarding.
What skills do you consider to be essential for your job?
Being able to communicate effectively is the most essential part of the job. I believe that anyone can learn certain skills over time but being able to communicate the results of your findings and provide recommendations to the senior management of the firm and to clients is by far the most important aspect of the job.
What are your future plans?
I take every day as it comes. However, I do intend to pursue a professional qualification or gain more exposure in corporate finance, particularly for the oil and gas industry.
Study smart in university as good grades are essential to break into the industry. Students don’t have to study accounting and finance to get hired, as professional firms these days also hire graduates from other fields such as engineering, information technology and human resources. Being able to secure an internship with a reputable firm will add significant weight to your résumé and enhance your chances of being hired.