Holly Hathrell - London

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Holly Hathrell - London

Dixon Wilson

I came a slightly roundabout route into accounting. I originally did an MPhys at the University of York and then a PhD at the University of Oxford. After deciding a post doc was not for me I initially looked into consulting, but was drawn to accountancy as it was more concrete, and offered a specific training path and qualification. Accountancy can also be incredibly versatile - every type of business and industry needs an accountant, be it a FTSE100 company, a premier league football team or a theatre.

Dixon Wilson stood out to me as I did not want to be on a purely audit graduate scheme and I was keen on working at a medium-sized, more client-facing firm with a better work life balance. The paid overtime was also a bonus and gave me the impression the firm really valued its trainees.

I have been able to work on micro accounts, very large accounts, trusts, partnerships, personal and company tax returns, as well as audits. I have also been allocated more types of work and industry sectors based on my personal preferences. This mix has been extremely helpful at providing me a wider background for the exams. Dixon Wilson trainees take the exams in a different order to most firms, with the certificates and professionals grouped by subject. There is a steep learning curve initially, but this approach is more logical to me and we are able to take on advanced work early on.

The firm is a lovely place to work, with beautiful offices and an active social calendar. Within my first week I was on a first name basis with managers and partners, who are very unpretentious and happy to chat in the kitchen on coffee breaks. The firm is currently implementing a number of new initiatives such as the Diversity Committee which I am a member of, reviewing areas such as trainee recruitment, work practices and organising more inclusive and non-pub based socials. In 2022 we had our second LGBTQ+ social with a quiz, bake off and rainbow balloons around the office. New ideas and upward feedback are always welcome!

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