Day in the life of a trainee

As the new recruits to our graduate trainee programme are now settled into their teams we thought we’d catch up with Anna, who recently joined our audit department, to see what a day in the life for a trainee looked like for her.

A Monday in October

Since joining Wenn Townsend on the graduate trainee programme I have also started my studies towards becoming an ICAEW Chartered Accountant, so for the past week I have been on study leave, remotely studying the ‘Assurance’ course with Reed Business School.

Having come back from study leave I would typically come straight back onto an audit, but as my team are currently in between audits whilst we wait for the next client to pass over the relevant information, it gave me a chance to catch up on admin and broaden my skillset with additional work.

I arrived at our Oxford office at 08:30, and spent about 1.5 hours on various strands of admin before finally being able to move onto well-defined client tasks.

When I’m waiting for my client to get back to me with their audit materials, I spoke to the accounts department managers to see what work I might be able to do for them. The firm’s size and communicative culture allows us to be fairly flexible in job assignment (e.g. even managers in the opposite department are likely to be familiar with us and/or our skillsets), and we as audit trainees definitely benefit from the range of experience. Despite being in the audit department I’m not just restricted to audit work, I regularly do work for the accounts department, and having dedicated payroll and tax departments as well means I can engage with specialised colleagues to pick up on their knowledge.

Thus, before lunchtime, I was involved with the following:

  • A manual (from paper documents) accounts preparation job. I was responsible for scanning in client bank statements and forwarding these to accounts to be processed via Dext (software for extracting bank statement transactions into CSV format for Excel manipulation), with the aim of drawing up a cashbook for the main bank account.
  • Going through review points with Peta from our accounts department from a small accounts job I had completed a couple of weeks prior.
  • Putting through a set of director resignations for one of our accounting clients: resigning via our company secretarial software, generating TM01 forms, and saving these to Virtual Cabinet for review and despatch to the client for signing.

As we’re centrally located in the middle of Oxford I then delivered some materials to an audit client whose offices are based a 15 minute walk away.

After lunchtime I then:

  • Received CSV file of bank transactions from the scans in the morning, and compiled the cashbook, then forwarded to Peta for review.
  • Began actioning review points from the morning feedback session.
  • Was walked through the process of filing dormant company accounts by Peta, as I had offered to help do this for one of her clients.

I finished for the day at 17:00. The managers at Wenn Townsend has been fabulously flexible and understanding by allowing me to determine my optimal work hours (within reason/contracted availability) to ensure I am able to accommodate additional commitments as well as study and my personal life, which has been very helpful. 

Source: Fri, 17 Nov 2023 11:21:22 +0100