Abhishek Yadav

Country: India
Sector: Accounting
Job title: Financial Services Audit Associate
Subject of study: Financial Technology
Year of graduation: 2022
Type/Level of study: Postgraduate Taught

Current Employer/Organisation Name

Ernst & Young UK

What have you been doing since leaving Exeter, and what are you doing now?

After graduating with my MSc from Exeter, I actively searched for a job while working in a pub simultaneously. After a few months, I secured a graduate position at EY in Edinburgh. I subsequently relocated from Exeter to Edinburgh and am currently working full-time. I find my work enjoyable and am learning a lot in my career field. However, I do miss my time in Exeter, as it is an unforgettable experience.

Why did you choose this career? And what do you enjoy most about your work?

I chose to work in financial services audit because it provides the opportunity to collaborate with clients at various levels across different sectors of finance, enabling me to gain a profound understanding of the financial industry in the UK. Engaging in regular discussions with clients and establishing valuable industry connections are aspects of my role that I truly enjoy.

Please tell us if you were a member of any societies, groups or sports clubs?

Yes, I was the Vice President of NHSF Exeter Hindu Society at the University of Exeter.

Were you part of the Exeter Student Ambassador Scheme at any point during your studies?

Yes

What did you enjoy most about your programme and what was the biggest highlight?

I thoroughly enjoyed my MSc in Financial Technology program at the University of Exeter. The biggest highlight for me was the hands-on experience and practical knowledge I gained in the field of fintech. The program allowed me to work on real-world projects and collaborate with industry professionals, which provided valuable insights into the rapidly evolving fintech industry. Additionally, I appreciated the supportive academic environment and the opportunity to learn from knowledgeable professors and peers who shared a passion for fintech. Overall, the combination of practical experience and academic excellence made my MSc in Financial Technology a rewarding and enriching experience.

What did you enjoy most about studying here?

I enjoyed several aspects of studying at the University of Exeter. One of the highlights was the academic rigor and the quality of education I received. The university had knowledgeable and supportive professors who were passionate about their subjects, and this created a conducive learning environment. Additionally, I appreciated the vibrant and diverse campus community. Interacting with students from different backgrounds and cultures enriched my overall university experience. The campus itself was beautiful, with plenty of green spaces and modern facilities. Furthermore, the University of Exeter offered various extracurricular activities, clubs, and societies that allowed me to pursue my interests and hobbies outside of academics. Overall, the combination of academic excellence, a diverse and engaging campus community, and extracurricular opportunities made studying at the University of Exeter a memorable and enjoyable experience.

Why did you choose to study at Exeter?

I chose to study at the University of Exeter for several reasons. Firstly, the university has an excellent reputation for its programs in finance and related fields. The MSc Financial Technology program specifically stood out to me due to its innovative curriculum and relevance to the evolving financial industry. Secondly, Exeter is known for its vibrant and welcoming student community, and I wanted to be part of that. The campus and facilities were also appealing, providing a conducive environment for academic and personal growth. Moreover, the location of Exeter in the South West of England appealed to me, offering a mix of a picturesque environment and proximity to major financial hubs like London, which is essential for networking and career opportunities in the financial sector. Lastly, the university’s commitment to research and the presence of renowned faculty members in finance and technology further reinforced my decision to choose Exeter for my MSc program.

What skills and experiences have been most useful for your career?

In my career in financial services audit, several skills and experiences have proven to be invaluable. My foundation in accounting and financial analysis has been crucial for scrutinizing financial statements and gaining insights into clients’ financial health. Effective communication skills have facilitated the establishment of strong client relationships and clear communication of complex financial concepts. Analytical thinking aids in identifying discrepancies and proposing viable solutions, while unwavering attention to detail ensures precision in auditing processes. A solid grasp of regulatory knowledge is essential to ensure compliance with evolving financial laws. Proficiency in audit software and technology tools enhances efficiency in handling large volumes of financial data. Additionally, time management is vital to meet project deadlines, as auditors often juggle multiple assignments. The ability to collaborate effectively within a team setting is indispensable, and the commitment to continuous learning is necessary to stay current in an ever-evolving financial landscape. Furthermore, my prior experiences, including internships and involvement in relevant student organizations, have provided practical exposure, networking opportunities, and a platform to apply classroom knowledge to real-world scenarios, enriching my career in financial services audit.

What advice would you give to a current student who wishes to pursue your career?

Firstly, prioritize your academic foundation by excelling in finance, economics, and related subjects. A strong grasp of financial principles is fundamental in this field. Next, seek practical experience through internships or part-time roles in financial institutions, investment firms, or related positions. These experiences will provide invaluable insights and allow you to apply classroom knowledge in real-world scenarios. Networking is crucial. Attend industry events, join finance-related student organizations, and seize opportunities to connect with professionals. Building a robust professional network can lead to valuable connections and potential job openings. Additionally, embrace technology by becoming proficient in financial software and data analysis tools, as these are increasingly essential in modern financial services. Effective communication, both written and verbal, is key when conveying complex financial concepts to clients and colleagues. Staying informed about industry trends and regulatory changes is vital, enhancing your adaptability. Cultivate teamwork and ethical conduct, maintain high standards of integrity, and be flexible in adapting to evolving market conditions. Lastly, seek mentorship from experienced professionals for guidance and insights into your career path. Remember, a career in financial services offers diverse opportunities, and your commitment to learning and networking will contribute to your success in this dynamic sector. 

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