Hi, I’m Anusha and I recently joined the National Tax Investigations team in our London Euston office. When considering which team I wanted to join, Tax Investigations appealed to me as it offers diversity across the taxes (e.g. Corporation Tax, Income Tax, VAT, etc.) and provides on-going challenges as HMRC continues to tackle tax evasion and avoidance. Read this post
As part of our development and goal setting as interns, myself, Rebecca and Stephen decided to write a blog expanding and reflecting on our experience of joining Grant Thornton for 6 weeks over the summer. We all agreed that Spilling the Beans was an extremely useful tool in finding out information about the application process and made the whole experience easier. Because of this we decided to try and give something back to the Spilling the Beans community and to help provide information to potential future interns about what being an intern at Grant Thornton actually entails…
Hi all! I’m Jess and I’m an intern in the Entrepreneurial and Private Client tax department at the Euston office.
A few weeks ago the tax and audit London interns, along with the full time members of their respective departments, were invited to spend the day at the Lee Valley Velodrome for the Audit and Tax Collaboration Day. And what a day it was! I can honestly say I never thought I’d be able to call my office the middle of the Olympic cycling track, where so many gold medals were won for Great Britain…
Many of you may be wondering what it is actually like to hold down a full-time job, complete professional studies and still have a life. Admittedly getting the balance between these things can be difficult but it is honestly so worth it.
The recruiting season is coming to an end here at Grant Thornton. Congratulations to all of you who have accepted graduate offers and will be joining us in September, and we’re also looking forward to welcoming interns on July 5th in London for the Intern conference.
This is a good time to give an update on what I am up to, and an insight into being in your second year in tax. Just as a reminder, I joined the graduate scheme in September 2014 in the Real Estate tax team in London. I’m part of a large group of previous interns who accepted offers to join the graduate scheme.
Second year is a big step up in terms of responsibility, workload and making connections. Let me give you an idea of my diary over the last few weeks……
Mid-April I went back to college for the next stage of professional exams (ACA) for Business Planning Tax. Studying Accounting and Financial Management at the University of Surrey meant that I took a few exemptions including two at professional level, so not as much pressure this time as when I sat the last three exams at the same time back in December (glad to say I passed!). This time I was in a new class with a mixture of firms. Personally, I like this as I’ve made new friends from different firms where we can share our experiences and network.
The next week was a mixture of working from home, at a client or in the office. Compliance season for tax provisioning is kicking off. Auditors require the accounts to include a deferred tax figure and, therefore, we have to prepare the tax returns using draft audit figures followed by the deferred tax calculations for each entity. I spent a day with the auditors on site obtaining information needed for the tax analysis. An additional complication this this year is the transition from UK GAAP to IFRS, requiring both audit and tax adjustments and extra time to allow for this. This is definitely one of my most complicated and demanding clients, needing as to work very hard as a team to get everything done by our deadlines.
Read this post
Mini-series alert! We are going to provide insights into the diaries of three Grant Thornton employees who work in tax. We start off with Alex, a first year tax associate. Later on in the week we hear from a second year tax associate and finally from an executive. We hope to provide you with more detail on what you may be doing as a graduate here and see the progression through the years.
I am going to begin this blog with a slight disclaimer – this is the first time I have ever written a blog and thus cannot be held responsible for the following prose should it not be as informative, entertaining, funny, and thrilling as you expected when you first clicked on it.
Now that we have cleared that up, I should probably introduce myself. My name is Alex and I am a first year Associate within Grant Thornton’s property tax team based in the Euston office in London. I grew up in Bath and after studying Politics at the University of Leicester, I moved to London. I originally worked within the recruitment industry for two years before deciding on a career change and joining the team here at Grant Thornton. I am studying towards the ACA qualification and have just completed the first six certificate level exams.
The purpose of this blog is to give you an idea of what the life of a first year associate in one of Grant Thornton’s tax teams is like so I thought I would pick apart my diary from the last month or so.
In part 2 of our National Apprenticeship Week blogs, we hear from Declan who obtained a permanent position at Grant Thornton through an apprenticeship.
Whilst at school I decided I wanted to work in accountancy and an apprenticeship would be the best way into the sector. Finishing school, I got in touch with an apprenticeship agency, City Gateway. City Gateway provides prospective apprentices with support in preparing for, and accommodating the facilitation of, apprenticeships. It was through City Gateway I found out about Grant Thornton and the apprenticeship they had to offer. I applied, and was successful for the role, and my journey with Grant Thornton began.
Upon arrival at the office, the team secretary greets me. She brings me to my people manager to be. “Hello James, it’s a pleasure to meet you” he says shaking my hand. “Likewise, but my name’s Declan?” I quite nervously utter. A burst of laughter soon surrounds us as we all realise I am standing in the wrong team.
The Budget is tomorrow, and Ben, a manager in the Real Estate tax team (Euston office) gives us some insight about what changes we can expect in the property sector.
As always, just before budget, the rumour mill goes in to overdrive. One such rumour is that there may be a fundamental change to the capital gains tax regime (possibly aligning the rates with those of income tax). If true it would represent yet another blow to the buy to let market for individuals but of course as with all rumours it needs to be taken with a large pinch of salt until Wednesday’s announcements.
However, we will receive confirmation of how exactly some of the previously announced changes will work, with legislation to be released. The three key changes in the property sector are:
- the 3% additional stamp duty land tax (SDLT) charged on additional residential properties (for both individuals and corporates) from April 2016.
- the gradual reduction of income tax relief landlords obtain on residential property finance costs starting from April 2017. By 2020, landlords will only receive a deduction at the basic rate of 20% rather than at current marginal rates of 40% or 45% (assuming landlords pay tax at those rates).
- how HMRC will choose to take forward the OECD recommendations with respect to corporate interest deductions. The proposals potentially give a far less generous position than the current UK tax system and will have a large impact for industries like real estate where use of loans play a key part in the financial profile.
Fraser from the Manchester office tells us about business risk services at Grant Thornton….
When deciding what service line I’d apply for, I decided I wanted to join a team which would have a real positive impact on its clients. I read about the different Advisory roles at Grant Thornton and was attracted to a role within Business Risk Services (BRS) team. After online tests, telephone interviews and group exercises, I was lucky enough to join the BRS team as a graduate trainee in January 2014, joining the team in the Manchester office.
As a business unit, BRS provides non-statutory internal audit and bespoke advisory services to clients across all sectors. As a guide, some of the audits I have worked on have included in-depth reviews of payroll processes and controls at a FTSE 250 company, a review of the effectiveness of internal staff communications at a university and a financial health check of a non-departmental government body. As you can see, there is not only real variety in the work we do, but also in the clients we have. I love the variety of work we do and it’s great to get experience in so many different areas.
A typical week in BRS will involve having a kick off meeting with the client on the Monday morning and planning how to structure the piece of work we are doing, including establishing key contacts and any testing that we need to do. Throughout the week, we will complete fieldwork and speak to key members of staff and management and feedback our findings by the end of the week. We then produce a report for the senior management team, which is also usually presented to the client’s audit committee, so it’s important that the report is well written and accurate.
To join the BRS team, a successful candidate should be able to demonstrate a number of the CLEARR values. I think a key one is responsibility as you can sometimes be out on site on your own or in a small team and therefore it’s important to take ownership of the work you are doing and to represent the firm to the best of your ability. That said, the team is very close-knit and the managers and directors in the department are always happy to feedback on any work you have done. One of the other key requirements is to manage your work load, as you can end up very busy when it comes to exams. I’m studying towards my ACA qualification, which is hard enough on its own without work on top of it!
As a business unit, BRS has grown year-on-year and last year we celebrated our most successful ever financial results. Consequently, our client portfolio is expanding and the team is growing, it’s a great time to get involved in BRS and learn more about the rigours of internal audit. If you have any questions, please post these below.
This week we focus on the advisory side at Grant Thornton in our #BusinessArea series. First we hear from Daniel, a TRS graduate trainee in the London office…….
Hi I’m Daniel Moore-Oats and I’m a graduate trainee within TRS. I’m back again two years since I completed my internship with Grant Thornton and wrote my last blog (see: http://traineeblog.grant-thornton.co.uk/2013/09/02/life-in-technology-risk-services-trs/ ). So what have I learnt and what is new? … big breath… a lot! This year has been one of my fastest to date and in this blog I will aim to give you a more detailed up to date insight into: the work we do ;the day-to-day role and skills required as a new graduate the team; and then more generally how we fit into the firm in terms of supporting other services lines and Vision 2020 I’ve included a lot of detail in this blog post which is why I’ve split it into two and you can skip to a certain part as required.
A detailed insight into TRS work
So let’s start at the beginning. In Technology Risk Services (TRS) we conduct a broad range of work covering most sectors. As an associate you will predominantly be working on large corporate and public sector clients with some opportunities to work with our financial services team. Our work generally splits into three categories: data analytics; external audit; and advisory.