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It was a proud night for our colleagues in Wales as one of their apprentices took home the Apprentice Award.
Rob Young joined Deloitte in September 2015 as part of the newly created Cardiff Apprenticeship programme. Our partnership with Cardiff & Vale College (CAVC) allows us to offer on-the-job business administration experience to people across the region. Rob joined the Tax GES Centre of Excellence Team in Cardiff on a 12-month apprenticeship.
Red carpet moment
Fast forward 12 months: Rob was chosen from CAVC learners across all curriculum areas for his outstanding achievements in the year, and took home the Apprenticeship Award for the 2015-16 academic year. Congratulations!
What’s next? Rob successfully applied to the Audit BrightStart programme which started in September 2016. It combines on-the-job learning with study towards a professional qualification, and comes with a salary and benefits too.
Good to know
We know that a traditional university degree is not right for everyone. If you know someone that would rather get a head start in their career and start earning while they learn, BrightStart may well be a better option – find out more.
Paying homage to our fondness of brain-teasers, every month we post a new challenge created by the Forensic Technology team, focusing on logical, analytical and coding problems.
For this month’s challenge, we are heading over to Rio (figuratively) and getting into the spirit of the Paralympic games. Using the publicly available data for the last two Paralympics (Beijing and London), we want you to predict using a mathematical model how many gold medals ParalympicsGB will win in Rio.
Deloitte team members from left to right: Ella Kemp (BrightStart), Andy Gardner (Summer Vacation Scheme Graduate), Katie Barrows (Scholar), Zoë Dexter (BrightStart), Victoria Elkins (BrightStart), Claire Siviter (Talent Director – South Region) and Hugh Knudsen (Scholar).
Zoë is a BrightStart Apprentice working in our Reading office. Zoë identified that when giving careers advice, her school placed a lot of emphasis on traditional university routes and lacked awareness of alternative pathways. To try and remedy this, she proposed the idea of an essay competition, designed to challenge local students to consider a wider range of school leaver opportunities. A small team, led by two of our BrightStart apprentices, pulled together to make this happen. We caught up with Zoë to find out more...
Ross Flanigan, Director, tells us why he is a big advocate of our Cardiff Apprenticeship scheme.
Just a few months ago, after many more months of effort and planning and interviewing, I was so pleased to see the first group of ten Business Administration apprentices join our teams.
The timing was great because they joined our business just as our training partner ‘Cardiff and Vale College’ opened their new and amazing city centre campus. We were all finding our way with this first group. The idea of apprentices was new to us, the college was building credentials, and the apprentices, well, they just had the small matter of setting out on their careers to think about.
Would it work? We didn’t know!! But I’ve got to say, it has been an exceptional success so far, and that’s mainly down to the apprentices themselves. Yes our Firm, our managers and the mentors have really made an effort. Yes, the college has pulled out all the stops. But we have been really amazed by the attitude, ability and commitment of the apprentices who are working in five different parts of our business.
They have no preconceptions and no fear. They’ve shown that when (with just a little trepidation) we put them in for a free chat with our CEO along with the Wales First Minister and his entourage.
So they’ve picked up the work, they’re volunteering for more, they are looking for their next career step with us, they are passing the academic bits and they are even helping more recent recruits settle in. I think the term used is ‘exceeding expectations’.
As it’s all going so well, we had a chance to bring everyone in the programme together for a low-key celebration just recently when apprentices, managers, mentors and our friends from the college had dinner together at the incredible rooftop restaurant ‘The Classroom’ in the new college campus. That restaurant is a candidate for best in the city if you ask me. But why ask me? A little apprentice-type blogging will probably say much more.
Brandon Edwards, KYC Analyst in Forensic, Financial Advisory, went along to the dinner. Check out his account of the evening here:
“The food was exquisite, staff delivered a first class service and the atmosphere was very relaxed. Thanks to this event, I was able to network with people that I had never met before as well as build up stronger relationships with people that I vaguely knew.
Every person that I met, no matter how high up in the company, was very welcoming, forthcoming and available for me to talk to if I had questions to ask on any topic at all. I made great personal connections with many different people who I’m pleased to say have now become friends.
I am very grateful to be involved in this event and hope that there are more events to come which will enable me to get more involved and meet more great people.”
For those of you who don’t know the meaning of the finger point, it means that Deloitte are number one!
The Forensic Technology practice has grown dramatically over the last 10 years and today is a team of 84 professionals. We are embarking on a new and exciting expansion by opening an office in St Albans and we are looking for ambitious and driven individuals to help grow the team to 50 in this location. We have invested in a spacious state of the art laboratory for analysing and processing data. From a work perspective there will be no distinction between the office in London with a variety of opportunities within the UK and abroad.
The picture below is from our office window and shows just how close the train station is. There is also free parking on site so several of our London based team members are considering swapping their rail season ticket for a set of car keys!
Callum from the Deloitte St Albans office describes what it was like working outside of the City.
“There is a more relaxed, friendly and personal working environment. The St Albans social committee plan all sorts of fun events, the Summer and Christmas Balls are the main ones. Then there’s the new joiner social event in the local pubs and there is an end of busy season social at the end of February which is usually a bar night in London, curry night, karaoke. Then they always try and switch things up last year they did cheese and wine night and a trip to London Zoo, this year there is talks of arranging everyone to go to a football match.”
Find more information about who we are, what we do and our Graduate Recruitment opportunities on the Forensic Technology website.
We’re delighted to announce that our “Spring into Deloitte” Scheme won the award for Best Short-term Insight Scheme at the National Undergraduate Employability Awards!
Here is an excerpt from an article RMP Enterprise wrote about the ceremony and our win:
Deloitte take home the Award for Best Short-term Insight Scheme at the National Undergraduate Employability Awards
Deloitte have been recognised for providing an exceptional insight scheme for students at this year’s National Undergraduate Employability Awards. ‘Spring into Deloitte,’ a two day residential course, is designed to educate students in the world of professional services, in particular what it is like to work at Deloitte, and to deliver employability skills that students may want to use in the selection process for Deloitte, or any other career they choose to pursue.
The scheme has proved incredibly valuable in strengthening Deloitte’s recruitment pipeline: 45% of insight scheme attendees are successful in securing a summer internship the following year. Of those that take part in the Summer Vacation Scheme run by Deloitte, 75% then go on to secure a graduate job with the company, demonstrating the value undergraduate schemes can have on attracting and retaining young talent.
Deloitte fought off stiff competition from employers from a range of industries to take home the Award for the Best Short-term Insight Scheme. The other finalists in this category, which was sponsored by LinkedIn were EY, Schlumburger and Nabarro.
The Awards saw over 400 nominations from employers, universities and students across 17 different Award categories. Winners of each Award were selected by an independent judging panel, made up of key thought leaders in the industry.
Gareth Cadwallader, Governor of University of West London, and head of the Judging Panel, said of this year’s nominations, “The standard of nominations was once again outstanding across the sector. The commitment of some of the world's highest profile employers to engage with undergraduates, as well as the dedication from universities and students to the employability agenda, is extremely impressive.
The Awards ceremony welcomed thought-provoking guest speakers from the industry including Aimee Bateman from CareerCake.com, Sarah Flynn, Chair of ASET and Stephen Isherwood, Chief Executive of AGR to share their insights.
The most recent High Fliers report showed that over four-fifths of the leading graduate employers in the UK are now offering paid work experience schemes for students and recent graduates. These schemes are making students more employable than ever, and Stephen suggested we are returning to a “seller’s market” whereby employers are increasingly having to compete to recruit the most employable students. “
You may have noticed that non-graduate entry opportunities is a big priority for us. Talent is at the heart of our core values, no matter where it comes from or what shape it takes.
This is why we decided to celebrate our existing BrightStart apprentices in an evening hosted by David Sproul our CEO and Emma Codd our managing partner for Talent.
We kicked things off with David Sproul welcoming us all and giving a brief overview of the strategy and the doors it can open for our people: Deloitte as the place were our apprentices can push the boundaries of discovery and exploration and where unsolvable problems are solved for the wellbeing of clients, people and society.
That is when the stars of the show took the stage! Tom Elsey and Angharad Old, two BrightStarts, shared their journey so far and proudest moments.
Emma Codd then spoke about the future of the programme and the plan to double the number of apprentices in the firm by September 2016.
Our Head of Professional Education & Apprenticeships, Honey Clarke, also spoke about all the people in the firm that want to support apprentices, get involved and become a BrightStart Ambassador.
We rounded the evening off with Honey being joined by Emma, Gordon McFarland and Alex Sinclair for a panel session in which they took questions from the audience, before celebrations continued over drinks.
The BrightStart scheme is the firm’s non graduate entry route into most of our professions, from audit to consultancy; a route that started in 2011 with a small number of school leavers joining Audit and Tax in London and the regions. Numbers have slowly grown to include all our career paths and, in September 2015, we saw 115 BrightStarts join Deloitte, including the delivery centre in Belfast, taking us to a total of 300.
If you or someone you know might be interested in becoming a BrightStart and gaining up to a degree-equivalent professional qualification, the application for the 2016 intake is now open.
Visit or send them to our webpage to learn more.
To celebrate some of the UK’s top businesses employing thousands of apprentices across the country, and the launch of the Apprenticeship Delivery Board, the Prime Minster David Cameron hosted a reception at 10 Downing Street on Monday 18 January.
In attendance from our firm were Honey Clarke, Head of Professional Education and Apprenticeships, along with HR Director Caroline Hunt and two BrightStart Apprentices: Lauren Mays who joined Financial Advisory in September 2014 and Alex Sinclair who works in Technology Consulting, having joined Deloitte in 2012. Both sit on the BrightStart Committee and were involved in organising the recent BrightStart celebration event hosted by David Sproul and Emma Codd.
David Sproul said, “Improving social mobility is one of the UK’s biggest challenges. One of the ways in which we are seeking to address this is by doubling the number of positions available through our BrightStart Business Higher Apprenticeship Scheme.” For us, there is a clear business imperative to get this right. In order to provide the best possible service and make an impact with our clients, we need to hire people who think and innovate differently, come from a variety of backgrounds and bring a range of perspectives and experience into the firm”.
During the evening, the Deloitte group met with David Cameron and David Meller and Nadhim Zahawi, co-chairs of the new Apprenticeship Delivery Board and were able to tell them about the opportunities that come from joining the firm through the non-graduate entry route.
Lauren and Alex gave a brief account of their experience at the event:
On Monday 18 January we had the honour of attending an apprenticeship celebration reception at 10 Downing Street. After arriving and nearly bumping head first into George Osborne, we were ushered upstairs past the portraits of all the former Prime Ministers, to meet our fellow apprentices and their firms’ apprenticeships Champions.
Thanks to Deloitte being a market leader in apprenticeships, we were also invited in to the White Room for a private meeting with the Prime Minister and David Meller and Nadhim Zahawi, co-chairs of the Apprenticeship Delivery Board. The Prime Minister was interested to hear about our motivations for choosing an apprenticeship and our career progression so far. He was even so bold as to enquire what our salary progression looked like in comparison to our graduate colleagues!
After keynote speeches from Nadhim Zahawi and David Cameron, there was just enough time for the obligatory picture in front of the door to Number 10 before heading home to give a full account to our expectant parents.
Why you got involved/what interested you into joining SID?
As a first-year student emerging from semester one, I had little clue as to what I wanted to do with my future so the opportunity to apply for a spring program where I could experience a professional atmosphere without having to determine a set career path was excellent. Deloitte appealed to me, particularly, because of their well-organised career events as well as the enthusiasm and helpfulness of the professionals who came along to them. I applied to ‘Spring into Deloitte’, thinking my experience would entail some teamwork exercises and perhaps a tour of the office but I honestly did not expect to leave feeling as inspired and motivated as I did, after just two days.
What did the event entail, what did you get up to?
Over our short time at Deloitte, we were given five insightful presentations about the different service lines the company offers. The most useful part to these was the case study exercises we completed. It allowed us to apply and expand our knowledge about the particular topic we were researching, whether it was on tax advice, auditing, consulting or even risk analysis, and it helped us to enhance our teamwork skills as well as our communication and presenting techniques. The skills and knowledge that I have picked up are invaluable to any important interviews, which I may have in the future. The feedback we were given, by the employees at Deloitte, was essential to the improvements we saw in our skills.
In addition to the Deloitte-specific exercises, we were given the most fantastic workshop on professional behaviour. The quality and expertise of the individual that spoke to us highlighted how much Deloitte valued our presence by investing in her time and skills. Furthermore, this talk was overwhelmingly useful as it opened our eyes to the effectiveness of adult behaviour and professional communication. This is something that, as young individuals, we have had little exposure to and yet it is a highly important element that we need to grasp in order to become successful.
At the end of the two days, we were given detailed information about the next steps in the Deloitte process and were able to prepare for a mock interview that we had during the final hour. The interview mirrored the format of the Summer Vacation Scheme interview and the interviewers, who were managers or senior managers, had actual experience conducting the proper interviews, themselves. This exercise left me feeling confident and prepared for the next steps and motivated to improve on what I had delivered. We received both professional feedback, which was detailed and highly constructive, as well as feedback from our peers, who were able to compare our interview to their own.
What did you get out of the whole experience?
Overall, I have left Deloitte feeling even more determined and prepared to pursue an exciting and successful career path. The two days allowed me to decide which service line I would be suited to and filled me with confidence that Deloitte will support my every step. Furthermore, the opportunity to mix both socially and professionally with bright, like-minded individuals has enabled the best outcome from the two days, by being able to bounce off different peoples’ ideas and learn skills through teamwork and cooperation. The Deloitte professionals who shared their fantastic stories have inspired me and it is clear that the company nurtures success on a global scale. The Deloitte team was very well organized, happy to be with us and probed us constantly for constructive feedback, so that they could improve even further. This whole experience has been instrumental in motivating me to take those extra steps towards creating a career for myself as well as providing me with unique insights into Deloitte and the professional world. I am so excited to see where Deloitte might take me and to potentially succeed and prosper within such a well-established company. ‘Spring into Deloitte’ has set me up with the foundations I need to do this.
A review from Katherine Wilson - First year student at Kings College London
Exam time can be a challenging period for a lot of students. Different students deal with it in different ways. We asked three of our BrightStart school leavers (Devon, Michael and Angharad) and one of our graduates (Nayema) how they got through it. Here’s a summary of what they said. Stand by for some invaluable tips!
Having been through exams yourself, what would be your best tips for someone who’s about to take them?
Start revising early. It gives you the chance to plan properly. It gives you time to spot gaps in your understanding and ask teachers or lecturers for help. It gives you the best possible chance of walking into the exam room feeling prepared and confident. It might be tempting to have fun now and revise later but the benefits of revising early are endless.
Practising past papers is also crucial. It’s no good memorising the entire syllabus if you can’t perform in a practical scenario. Practising papers under timed conditions will help you understand what the exam will be like on the day, and that’ll take some of the pressure off you.
Sounds cheesy, but DON’T PANIC!! A bit of pressure is good to motivate you to revise beforehand. But when it comes to the actual exam, you’re so much more likely to remember those little things you forgot to look over if your head is calm.
At Deloitte, how do you manage your time between work and revision?
Generally, work time is for work. And study happens around that, mostly at weekends. Waking up a little earlier at weekends and doing a couple of hours of solid revision really helps.
Deloitte’s study days are also brilliant. We’re allowed to take a number of days as study leave every year, so that’s a great way to take some time off just before exams to prepare.
What would be your three top tips for staying calm throughout the exam period?
- Don’t just revise. Make sure every day has some non-exam chill time. Go for a long walk. Watch a movie. Take up a hobby. Do anything that gives you some head space.
- Talk to people. As clichéd as it sounds, talking to other people who are doing the exams will help you realise that you’re not alone and that other people may be finding it hard too!
- Eat and sleep normally. As tempting as it is to stuff your cheeks with chocolate, drink copious amounts of Red Bull and stay up until 4am cramming as much into your brain as possible, the caffeine rush that keeps you awake isn’t going to last forever and will leave you exhausted and with a headache – not ideal exam conditions.
What would be your top tips when it comes to time management around exams?
It’s all about planning your weeks in advance. See which days you can realistically fit revision in and stick to that schedule. Also, give your phone to someone else while you’re revising. You might actually get some work done!
Don’t forget to take breaks. It’s best to work for an hour or so, then take a 10-15 minute rest. Also, don’t waste too much time going over topics you know well. It’s better to know 5 topics well than 3 topics excellently and 2 topics not very well.
Have you got any tips for university students in the final stages of completing their dissertations?
- Get as much advice from your mentor as possible. Make sure you arrange as many one-to-ones as you can.
- Get someone to properly proofread your work and double check that your structure is logical.
- Focus on having a strong first half, but an even stronger second half. People often concentrate on getting the beginning right, but the findings/conclusions can really make or break a good dissertation.
Work/life balance is important during exam time. What do you do to avoid getting too stressed?
Having a plan definitely helps. If things get intense, plan your weeks and then prioritise your daily tasks each morning.
Make sure you remember to take some time out. Exercise is great stress reliever. And even just spending a few hours reading a book or seeing friends can make a big difference.