A good fit
When I left university, I wasn’t exactly sure what I wanted to do and took a year out to travel. I decided a career in engineering wasn’t for me, and I was ready to take on a new challenge. During my degree, I had developed strong analytical and problem-solving skills that are very transferrable to a career in Finance, and I particularly liked the structure of the Accountancy programme on offer at Baillie Gifford. The opportunity to rotate around several different business areas meant I could find the best fit for me. Studying for the ICAS Chartered Accountant qualification was also really appealing, as it is so highly respected.
A real role
Since January, I’ve been completing my first placement in the European Funds Operation Department, working as an Assistant Fund Accountant. The team are responsible for providing high-quality accounting and administration services for Baillie Gifford’s UK Open Ended Investment Companies. From the day I joined, I was made to feel welcome and like an actual member of the team. They’ve provided extensive on-the-job training that allowed me to become competent in a wide variety of tasks, including preparing interim and annual accounts, daily fair value pricing and helping with corporate tax returns.
I’m a big people person, and I’ve really enjoyed the opportunity to build strong networks across different business areas in the firm. I’ve been lucky enough to have one-to-one meetings with some of the heads of departments, and I’ve attended careers fairs to share my experiences with students interested in the firm. During my current placement, I’ve also reached out to different teams within my department to get overviews of what they do. Everyone I approached was really open to this, giving an hour of their time to meet with me, explain their roles and answer my questions.
I’m just about to move on to my next placement in the Client Administration department for four months, and then I’ll move onto Financial Control for a further four months. In the long term, the opportunities are endless, and I’m not restricted to a career in one team. As Baillie Gifford has invested so much in my personal development, from training on team building and presentation skills to leadership development sessions, I am confident that it could be a long and rewarding career here.