MY ACCOUNTING JOURNEY SO FAR
Welcome to my blog! Although it’s not a new medium of communication (I have a weight loss blog I dabble in on and off), this is my first footstep into documenting my journey within accounting and it’s a bit daunting having my name out there in the world!
I have found that I’ve struggled to find sources of encouragement and advice on the possibilities within accounting so I thought I might document my own journey for aspiring accountants out there. I didn’t find my way into accounting the “normal way” and took a bit of a detour but I do love what I do. Plus, seeing as it’s the first post, it makes sense to document how I’ve gotten to my current position as an accountant in practice.
I have to admit I never originally wanted to be an accountant. In fact, I wanted to be several things growing up including an author or a parliamentary researcher but before I went into practice, I imagined that I was going to be a business owner of some sort. It ran in the family and as you will see from my work experience, I’ve dabbled in a few different areas in my time.
I have a strong retail background having helped in some form at my parents’ business since I was a little girl and I’d say I’m fairly good with people. It wasn’t until I was part way through university studying Politics and had to take a year out for my health that accounting started to come into the picture. I’m not one for staying at home and twiddling my thumbs, so as soon as I started feeling better, I started working for my parents again. It just so happens that the lady who was in charge of their bookkeeping was going on maternity leave and my parents asked if I minded covering as the timings coincided.
And so it began – I carried on doing the books there for nine years along with marketing, sales, purchasing, admin/HR duties as well as managing a small team. Whilst I worked that job, I had numerous side projects including helping to create an online delivery company, starting up a restaurant, did bookkeeping for another family business and also volunteered as a social media administrator for a local drama school. During my year hiatus from university, I started accounting courses and by the time I returned, I had my level 1 in computerised accounting and level 2 in bookkeeping and accounts under my belt. I started my AAT level 3 at the same time as my final year in university (I wouldn’t suggest doing it at the same time!) before taking a small break and completing my level 4 and becoming qualified in December 2015. I gained full membership of AAT in March 2016.
At this point in my life, I didn’t see myself leaving the family business and was contemplating several business ventures of my own. I always saw myself working within industry and in 2017 I started the CIMA qualification. However, in early 2018, my parents made the decision to sell their business and it made me rethink what I really wanted to do with my life. I committed to staying on and sorting the handover for three months after the sale, but beyond that I wasn’t sure if I wanted to stay where I was. In May 2018 I did something rather spontaneous and handed in my notice without having another job lined up. I figured I had savings and I could really take a break after non stop studying and working to find a job that I really wanted.
It was here that I decided I wanted to go into accounting full time. I enjoyed helping other people, teaching them new skills and I liked the thought of helping other people flourish in their dream businesses. At first I applied for any kind of accounting job, though many would involve me taking a pay cut (as I was in management previously) and I was shortlisted for a payroll job at a local private school as well as being put forward for several accounting assistant jobs. Then, whilst scrolling on LinkedIn, there was a job being advertised for an assistant accountant at a local accountancy practice specialising in small business but there was only an hour until the deadline for applications closed. I applied with half an hour to spare, somehow got an interview and received a job offer with a training package to study ACCA.
I’ve been with the practice two and a half years now and I’m halfway through my ACCA journey. It has been a hard slog especially as I got promoted within 9 months of joining the firm and took over responsibility for all VAT and limited company clients. It’s not always been plain sailing but I think you’ve just got to keep your end goal in sight. Plus I’ve met so many lovely clients in the last two years and I have a great group of colleagues who pick me up when I’m having a bad day and they have insane banter which makes the job a lot easier.
So after all that, what will you be seeing on my blog? I will be updating you on my accounting journey as I hit the strategic level of ACCA for the June 2021 sitting and I think I’d also like to incorporate the latest accounting news and little tips which might help people run their small business a little easier as well as advice on studying to be an accountant.
Alongside that, I want to document parts of my personal finance journey so I’ll be exploring my journey saving for a house and maximising my income opportunities. I’ll be uploading every Friday with a new topic. If there’s anything you want me to visit, comment it down below and I’ll see if I can make a generalised post about it.
Please don’t forget that despite being a qualified accountant, any information is for educational purposes only. If you are ever stuck, always contact a professional who can advise you properly in the situation you are in.
So until next week..