Lucy graduated from the Cass Business School having studied Accounting and Finance and joined Baillie Gifford in 2016. She offers some incredible insight into the firm and her role.
Top Performing Funds
In my final year at university, part of my coursework was about investing money in different portfolios. I was looking for the top-20 best performing funds for long-term investments. Six of the top-20 funds I identified were managed by Baillie Gifford, so when I discovered that they offered graduate trainee accountancy contracts, I was immediately interested. I didn’t realise that an Investment Management firm would offer accountancy training. I did some more research and the culture within the firm sounded really appealing, so I decided to go for it.
I applied to a number of other large accountancy firms, but the process seemed far more personal at Baillie Gifford. With Baillie Gifford, it’s different. The process was far more welcoming and I was interviewed by a person that I would go on to work with. With many of the larger firms, trainees move on after qualification, but I was encouraged to discover that the staff turnover at Baillie Gifford is very low. To me, this shows that they really look after their people.
My work on the programme has been very varied. One of my training projects was to look at different aspects of setting up a new entity in Shanghai, including putting together a business licence, preparing cashflow, estimating a five-year budget and creating a business plan for the regulator. This has helped me to really understand what’s involved in setting up a business. I’m also responsible for regulatory and financial reporting of our European businesses in Ireland, Germany and Switzerland. Since qualifying, I’ve been able to really take the lead on projects, chairing meetings and taking questions, which I think shows a clear progression in my skills.
There are so many options to consider when it comes to my future here at Baillie Gifford. I could stay in the Finance team, move to Client Accounting or one of the Fund Accounting teams for North America or Europe. Baillie Gifford is really growing in Asia and the company has even provided a personal tutor for me to learn Mandarin. It’s been fantastic to be supported in this way and, after two years of lessons, I can speak the language fluently!
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