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Finance Management Graduate

Salary notes: 
Job/scheme locations: 
Type of opportunity: 
Graduate scheme
Application deadline: 

On our finance programme you'll go on a fast-moving learning journey with a leading transport operator. Getting to grips with real-life projects in our finance teams across various locations of the business, you'll learn quickly going on a wide range of placements whilst working towards your CIMA chartered status.

Who will I be working for?

FirstGroup PLC is the leading transport operator in the UK and North America, providing solutions for an increasingly congested world, keeping people moving and communities prospering. We currently operate several divisions, including 2 in the UK – Bus and Rail and more in North America. During the last year, over 100,000 employees helped over 2 billion passengers get to work, school or college, visit family and friends and so much more, whilst helping us generate annual revenues of approximately £5bn.

What does the programme involve?

Starting out as a Finance Management Graduate you'll be developing the skills to become a future finance lead from day one. We'll be looking for some solid financial awareness right from the start. It's about your ability to look at the wider issues, the bigger picture. Your understanding of the knock-on effect every decision you make will have. It's about spotting opportunities, and reacting quickly and effectively to any challenges. You'll be as comfortable analysing data as you will be presenting proposals on new opportunities to improve the way we can make our finances work.

During the programme you'll get fully involved and will experience the following:

  • Financial Accounting
  • Financial Planning, Budgeting and Analysis
  • Financial Projects and Business Analysis
  • Internal Audit
  • UK based Divisional Finance Team placement (in Group or UK Rail)
  • There may also be a potential US based Divisional Finance Team placement
  • Placement with the Director of Finance

Throughout the programme, we'll provide you with training courses to help you to develop your skills and knowledge. These will be a mixture of internal and external courses led by leading subject matter experts to aid with your development.

We'll also offer you the opportunity to become a chartered accountant by funding and fully supporting you through the CIMA Professional Qualification.

We will support you every step of the way by providing you with a syllabus and assigning you a mentor who will work with you to ensure you realise your full potential. It's very much on-the-job learning for people eager to learn from others, yet passionate to drive their own development too. 

Who are you looking for and what qualifications do I need?

As a successful graduate within our Finance Teams you will need:

  • To be high-reaching with your sights set on a management role
  • Some solid strategic awareness and the ability to see the bigger picture 
  • The ability to build positive relationships and collaborate with your colleagues at every level
  • To have a real customer focus, being able to put internal and external customers at the heart of everything you do to ensure the best customer experience
  • A focus on safety and the importance of ensuring safety for yourself, the customer and your colleagues

We aren't strict with our entry criteria, there's only a few things we feel are essential:

You'll need to have achieved or be expected to achieve at least a 2:1 in Accounting, Finance, Economics, Business Administration or any other relevant university degree.
You don't need any previous experience in the transport industry, just the passion, enthusiasm and curiosity to understand how the business operates and the ability to align yourself with the business goals and values. 

Where will I be located?

Ours is an industry that's always on the move. So you'll need the flexibility to adapt to an ever changing environment, as you'll go on placements throughout the UK. As well as working in London at our HQ, you'll spend some time placed in some of our various finance team locations within our Operation Companies to ensure you obtain as much exposure as possible to our industry. Placements can be anywhere from Aberdeen to London, Bristol to Manchester!

What will I receive in return?

We offer a competitive salary, certain travel benefits, pension scheme, buy as you earn and save as you earn share schemes as well as discount and cash back programmes with high street and online retailers.

We are an equal opportunity employer and value diversity at our company. We do not discriminate on the basis of race, religion, colour, national origin, gender, sexual orientation, age, marital status, veteran status, or disability status.

How will I be selected?

Successful applicants will undergo a 5-stage selection process. Once you have applied, we will invite you to complete some online tests. If you get through these, you'll be asked to undertake a video interview. This may then result in you being invited to an assessment centre, which, if you pass, will lead to an offer for a place on the next graduate programme starting in September 2020.

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