Abs Mir: Assistant Resourcing Manager – Early Careers – BDO

Could you share some information on the types of opportunities available?

We have opportunities available across all our 16 UK offices for graduates and school leavers, in our Audit, Tax & Advisory streams. You will gain a Level 7 qualification (equivalent to a Masters) whilst working with us.

How do students apply for the opportunities and how should they prepare?

Students can apply by going on our website and selecting the role that appeals to them most. They should always do their research about the company and the team they are applying to work for prior to making an application. This increases their understanding about the firm and the job in question, and as a result will determine their motivation for wanting to work in that particular role.

What advice would you give to students starting out on their early career journey and exploring opportunities?

When starting out your career, it’s important for you to gain experience through work experience or through attending webinars and connecting with people that work in different industries. This gives you an insight in to what sort of work they do, which can help you make an informed decision on what your own career aspirations and ambitions are.

Do as much research as you can and build on your commercial awareness – this will show you have a business acumen and are willing to learn.

What advice would you give students to help them stand out in their applications?

Be yourself! Always play to your own strengths and don’t say things you think the employer would want to hear.  Always mention any experience you have gained, whether that was at school or working part time. Researching on the company and being aware of your own motivations for wanting to work for them will make you stand out in the application process, especially at the Assessment Centre and interview.

What is your number one tip for a young person when preparing for an assessment centre/interview?

In an interview – I would strongly recommend for you to make sure you give as many examples as possible, if you don’t have one, you can come up with a hypothetical one which just shows what you would do if you were in a situation like that in the future. This way you will never leave the interview feeling disappointed about not mentioning something.

For Assessment Centres remember that the most important aspect of the day is communication. This is how you communicate individually and also how you work in a team.

What advice would you give to a young person to overcome nerves on the day of an assessment centre/interview?

It is absolutely normal to feel nervous on the day – that’s what makes us human! Make sure you get a good night’s rest before the day and have breakfast to fuel you up for the day ahead.

Make sure you have done your research and as practice, make your family ask you why you are applying for the firm and what makes you want this role – if you can convince them, then you can convince the assessors too!

What differentiates a strong candidate from their peers?

A strong candidate will be someone with strong communication skills – someone who is willing to work independently when required but also works well within a group setting – someone who takes other’s opinions on board and collaborates. Everyone can read the same stats available on a company’s website – but it is important for you to mention WHY that stat stands out or is important for you in particular.

What is your top tip for a group assessment?

Keep track on time, make sure you are polite enough to let others speak, but not so polite that you don’t get a chance to get a word in. It’s about finding the right balance and making sure you are saying a point out loud because if you don’t say it, then no one will know what your contribution was.

What advice would you give to students to make themselves stand out?

Being themselves – and sticking to their strengths and what they are good at. If you talk about something you are passionate about, you will notice you can go on and on – however the moment you talk about something that brings your energy down, it will show in your body language.

What are the different entry routes students could take to get into a career in accountancy?

There lots of routes available for students depending on their year of study:

‚ÄčThose in year 11-12 (and 13) can apply to join our Explore BDO Summer Work Experience programme.

Those finishing A Levels can join us in our School Leaver programme which is for 4 years and in the end will leave you with a Level 7 (Masters) qualification.

Those in University can join us for a Summer Internship when in their penultimate year of study and those who have graduated from university can join us as a Graduate in our 3-year Graduate programme.

What advice would you give students who are unsure of the entry pathway that is best for them?

Do your research – attend insight events – speak to professionals (both those that have gone to university and those that did an apprenticeship) – this way you can weigh up your pros and cons. Remember that the decision is ultimately yours and both routes are great – and it comes down to what your preference is.

What kind of support/mentoring do companies typically offer to students completing their exams depending on which early careers programme they are on?

There is plenty of support and mentoring available for all students.

Each student is first assigned a buddy, who will be someone a year ahead of them – they are someone who the student can contact for any day to day queries as the buddy was in their shoes the year before

The student will also be given a People Manager – who is responsible for their development and daily tasks.

As well as that, the candidate will have a senior member of staff assigned as a mentor to discuss their career aspirations with.

And there will be a designated Professional Qualifications team who will ensure the student has ample study break and is set up for success to tackle exams.