Tag Archives: Exams

Accelerating in Leeds

Hi I’m Annabel, I’m one of the new additions to the audit department in the Leeds office. Having joined Grant Thornton as a school leaver just a few months ago I already feel like my understanding of audit and the role of a school leaver has increased greatly, so I thought I would share my experience with you all so far.

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My first…exam

Hi Everyone, my name is Helen. I am a first year trainee in the Audit department in London, Finsbury Square, studying towards the ACA and this is my first guest blog… on the dreaded subject of exams! I have just sat my first 3 exams after just 3 months with the firm, so hopefully this blog will give you a bit of a fresh insight into college life, revision and sitting exams.

Whatever qualification you will be working towards, even if it’s not the ACA, exams and studying will be a big part of your life as a trainee so you should find this blog relevant to you. Read this post

The world of Trusts

Working in trusts

Hi I’m Navin! I joined the trust team in Norwich just over 3 months ago, having completed a degree in Accounting and Finance. As I had not encountered trusts in my studies, I arrived with limited knowledge and I was slightly apprehensive!  However, I was Read this post

Nicoline’s Journey to School Leaver at Grant Thornton

I’m Nicoline and I recently joined the Financial Services Audit team in London as a school leaver. My journey to the school leaver scheme is a bit different than most. Firstly, I’m from Denmark and spent my last three years of school at an International School in Holland where I completed the bilingual International Baccalaureate Diploma. I then got offered a place to study Philosophy, Politics and Economics at the University of Warwick, which I didn’t think twice about. At my school, going straight to university was the norm and I didn’t know that school leaver schemes even existed. So, I went to university and quickly discovered that it wasn’t right for me, Read this post

Molly’s Accelerate Diary – October 2014

Whenever I come to write my monthly diary blogs, the first thing that I can think to write about is what I’ve been up to that day – what’s on my mind right now. Today, for me that was a day at college. Pretty standard. It means I had a lie in this morning, had a minor moment of anxiety when I realised how close exams are, rejoiced at finishing at half past four, and then drove home. Not very exciting. What’s nice about writing my diary blogs is that it forces me to take a moment to pull my head out of the present and sit back and think about what I’ve done over the past month. Every time, it makes me feel pretty chuffed to work where I do. Read this post

Head to Head #11 – Revision: Long Term vs Cramming

The last blog in our Head to Head series looks at something that all of us trainees do with our precious evenings and weekends away from the office… Revision.

Most of us like to plan our revision strategy over a period of time and get plenty of knowledge on board so we are confident heading into those final college sessions before the exams.  The tax boys on the Spilling the Beans team, however, prefer more of a last minute approach…

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Head to Head #10 – Grant Thornton vs Big 4

This head to head blog comes from two of our people who trained with the Big 4 before making the move to Grant Thornton to finish their studies and continue their career…

A bit about you – where you worked before, why the move to GT etc.

My name is Prithpal, I work in the corporate tax department. I have been working at Grant Thornton for about seven months now and studying towards my ACA. Prior to working at Grant Thornton I worked for Deloitte.

I’m Qian and I work as an audit assistant in the Ipswich office and study towards the ACA qualification. I am currently preparing for the last ACA exam paper – case study. Before joining Grant Thornton I worked for KPMG in a regional office however unfortunately I had to leave after failing one of my exams for the second time by one mark. Read this post

Head to Head #4 – ACA/CTA vs. ATT/CTA

As part of our series of ‘Head-to-Head’ blogs we thought we would explore the different experiences of two people who have gone on to do the CTA (Chartered Tax Advisor) qualification. Nick and Astrid are both former members of the Spilling the Beans team who have both gone on to be CTA qualified, so we are in safe hands! However they took very different routes to qualification, so in this blog Nick and Astrid go head-to-head to battle it out! Nick did ATT (Association of Tax Technicians) then CTA, whilst Astrid did ACA (Association of Chartered Accountants) then CTA. We posed a series of questions to Astrid and Nick to really get under the skin of why they chose their particular routes to qualification. Here goes… Read this post

Head to Head #2 – Commercial Audit vs. Public Sector Audit

Head to Head 2

The second in our series of head-to-head blogs comes from Catherine and Jonathan, who focus on the differences between commercial audit and public sector audit….

Why did you choose commercial audit/public sector audit (PSA)?

Catherine: Before applying to Grant Thornton for an internship I did some research on the different opportunities available including the different areas of audit. From my research I decided that commercial audit seemed to include a broad variety of organisations and would give me the opportunity to work in lots of different sectors from manufacturing to charities. Since joining I have certainly found this to be the case. Furthermore, public sector audit is only offered in certain (usually larger) offices and therefore my office of choice, Sheffield, didn’t have a PSA department.

Aside from my research, having done some work experience within commercial audit before I went to university I felt that I already understood more about commercial audit and I think, to a certain extent, that my decision against public sector audit was for fear of the unknown!

Jonathan: Upon leaving university I was unsure about what I wanted to do. I knew that I wanted to get a job and begin to earn money but I wasn’t sure of my calling. This led me to getting a job at a local housing association in the customer services department. After 18 months of working there I decided it was time to move on and I felt that a graduate role would offer me opportunities to develop my career. I began my research and I came across PSA. Working in the public sector had increased my interest and awareness of the issues that public sector organisations face. I then discovered that Grant Thornton had won a lot of contracts from the Audit Commission and were hiring. I submitted my application, attended an assessment centre and was offered the job!

I guess a further question is: ‘Why not commercial audit?’. I felt that my work experience and knowledge was more suited to PSA and at the time of my application the Birmingham public sector team was growing rapidly. Therefore, it felt like a natural choice. During my time at Grant Thornton I have had opportunity to work in commercial audit which has enabled me to broaden my experiences.

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School leaver to senior manager!

As I was completing my A-Levels and thinking about what I wanted to do with my life my school were pushing me hard to go to University.  I wasn’t a model student, studying didn’t really come easy to me and I much preferred playing rugby!  I was very concerned that three years studying might come to nothing and I’d be in debt and back to square one.

I looked into a few different industries, but the one I saw with the most potential was training to become an accountant, (despite my careers advisor telling me I was best suited to… Read this post