Lydia explains how after leaving school she was looking for an opportunity to learn on the job and gain a qualification. She decided to join the KPMG360º apprenticeship programme (with a tax focus), as this covered her study costs
I was hoping to carry on training after sixth form, but wanted to do something relevant and start work as soon as possible. I'd seen my older brothers finish university and struggle to get a graduate job afterwards - so I was interested in paid experience that would get me ahead.
I applied for other apprenticeships, but KPMG's programme was the one I really wanted. I was drawn to the possibility of taking a secondment abroad, and the fact that KPMG is part of a global network of firms. The company is well established, so I knew I'd be supported throughout my training.
It's now three years later and I love every minute of it. I've found the perfect department for me in Rewards Tax. This was only meant to be a placement, but it's turned into my full-time job. I liked it so much that I chose to specialise early on.
I get so much responsibility in my team. KPMG helps me to work around my priorities, such as my exams and where I want my career to progress. If I wished to change teams or projects, I would be supported in doing so. I'm treated like any other colleague - not an apprentice - and the level of work I've completed has really exceeded what I expected.
There's so much variety in the department. One morning I'll be in a client meeting, talking through a plan for the most tax-efficient way to reward their company's employees, while the next day I'll be learning about international tax and writing a report for an overseas office. At the moment, I'm working on a huge project involving client offices in over 20 countries. I've been working on it since I started and I've acquired so much knowledge of international tax law.
Beyond the day-to-day work, I also go to some school careers fairs to talk about KPMG's apprenticeship programmes. I'm so passionate about letting young people know the options they have to get ahead in their careers.
One other great thing is the culture here. Most people say this, but I genuinely believe we have the best people. Everyone is really supportive, friendly and professional.
I would recommend the Rewards Tax department because it's both numbers and advisory based. So although you're a tax advisor, you're a consultant as well - it's the best of both worlds.
I would definitely recommend an apprenticeship with KPMG. If you want to be supported towards your qualification in a well-known global firm, then you should definitely jump at the chance to learn, qualify and gain real-life experience here.
Find out more
- Read about how to apply for KPMG's apprenticeship programmes.
- Explore careers in the accountancy, banking and finance industry.