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The Business Magazine May 2024
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Shaw Gibbs in Oxford see increase in people transitioning from industry to practice to take up careers during the pandemic

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Moving from industry to practice

During the Covid pandemic, Shaw Gibbs  have seen an increase in people transitioning from industry to take up a career with us. We made several new hires with an industry background during lockdown, some of whom have moved from an unstable sector, whilst others have changed direction due to the limitations of travel bans and recruitment freezes.

Our Outsourcing department particularly suits this transition as the services provided are essentially an outsourced financial back-office for clients. This means that employees with industry experience and/or CIMA qualification fit particularly well.

We spoke to two new hires in the Outsourcing division and a long-term member of our Financial Planning about their experiences in moving from industry to practice.

Gemma Barrett started in November 2020 and is our Senior Outsourcing Manager. She has over 20 years industry experience in supporting businesses with all levels of financial reporting and structure. She prides herself in providing timely meaningful financial data to assist in the decision-making process business stakeholders are faced with.

Gemma is enjoying the variety that working in practice brings. The experience she has had so far has given her confidence to tackle new challenges and push her out of her comfort zone.

She comments:  “No two days are the same, no two clients are the same and this keeps me intrigued, motivated and gives me job satisfaction knowing I am supporting multiple local businesses achieve success.” 

Alex Au-Yeung who is our Financial Planning Business Support manager also appreciates the fact that the clients they service are contributors to the local economic sphere and from his experience in working both industry and a national financial services firm, the Shaw Gibbs client base “keeps him closer to the City”.

Alex is also a keen networker and (when social distancing allows) is looking forward to getting out and re-establishing his presence with local interconnected businesses.

 “I am glad to have found a position where I can apply my analytical and people management skills as well as being able to see how the firm fits into and contributes to the wider economic eco-system.” says Alex.

Tomás McDonagh joined Shaw Gibbs during the first lockdown in 2020 and is our Outsourcing Manager. He has always worked in industry and has covered roles as Accounts Finance Assistant; Assistant Group Accountant and Accountant. His expertise focuses on management reporting, budgeting, cash flows and statutory reporting.

“I was sceptical at first about potentially moving into practice from industry, but after talking to Sarah, Lynne and Kerry, it was clear that not only would I gain value from practice, I would be able to bring in my industry experience and help grow the team knowledge.”

Being a keen traveller, Tomás also sees a huge benefit in the international opportunities that being in a practice can offer. Shaw Gibbs are members of DFK, an international association of independent accountancy practices with member firms in 93 countries with 441 offices worldwide. This means that there are secondment opportunities as well as a network of international experts to share knowledge and best practice with.

“Working at Shaw Gibbs has been a great experience so far; working in a fast paced and exciting environment supported by an excellent team and culture has really helped.” says Tomás. 

The culture at Shaw Gibbs is something which is consistently praised from our new hires, existing employees, and our alumni. We have ambitious growth plans and strive to hire talented experts who share our focus on delivering high-quality client solutions.

The Shaw Gibbs culture is based on our values of Expert, Respectful, Innovative and Collaborative. We have recently launched an innovative longer-term approach to flexible working to encourage a greater diversity of backgrounds and working practices.

Shaw Gibbs Accountants have offices in Oxford and London.

The HR team at Shaw Gibbs would be happy to have an informal phone conversation if you are thinking of taking the step into an accountancy practice, whether you have had previous practice experience or not.

Feel free to contact us on [email protected] or call 01865 292 200. 

To view our current career opportunities, see this page

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