Page 1

ECOMS Presents

The Monetary Expansion The Essential Guide to Vac Work and your Career

With thanks toBusiness Sub-Committee: Alyce Haast, Louis Hager,

Fraser Hall, Thomas O'Donnell, Tyler White, and Ben Ritchie Business Officer: James O'Donnell Vice-President (Business): Elselynn Leighton Communication Officer: Jeremy Cole Immediate Past President: Matthew Mckenzie President: Justin Bloomfield

How long have you been with HLB Mann Judd? I joined HLB Mann Judd in July 1992 as a graduate and have been with the firm now for nearly 20 years! What role does a partner take at HLB Mann Judd? Partner roles can be very diverse. The primary roles of a partner are to manage the relationship that the firm has with the client and to grow the business. How did you arrive in your current position? I have worked hard and always given my best. I have been fortunate to work with the other successful partners at HLB Mann Judd and learn a great deal from them. What are your current duties? As a partner within the Corporate and Audit Division of HLB Mann Judd, I am responsible for liaising with clients, review of files and the management of staff. I am also the Staff Partner at our firm, which means that I am responsible for Human Resources within the firm. How much study would you advise a student to undertake to one day arrive in a similar position? It is different for each person. Some people study very well in a short time and others take longer. I have always been guided by wanting to be the best that I can be and putting enough effort in to achieve this. How important are your final grades to get to your position? Grades are important as they help get your “foot in the door�, however once you have secured that interview, the interviewer is more interested in you as a person, whether you would complement the culture and values of the firm and what skills and personality you would bring to the organisation. What character qualities do you think a partner should have? Partners need to be flexible and adaptable to all situations, be a good listener and be accessible. How much does a partner make in terms of an annual salary? A partner within an accounting practice can make a very good income. Obviously this will depend upon the size of the firm and the nature of the work that the partner does.


Are there any important lessons that you have learnt working in the firm that you would like to share with students who aspire to be at your level one day? There is no substitute for hard work and patience. Norman Neill Partner


Welcome to the ECOMS Careers Handbook for 2012! Over the years, our Careers Handbook has become a much anticipated guide for Commerce and Economics students looking to set themselves up with that dream graduate position, or with a vacation role that will ease the process into a great graduate job. This year, we’ve made many improvements to help our members get an edge on the competition. Graduate jobs in Australia are some of the most highly sought after in the world at the moment, with our stable economy providing an attractive lifestyle to HD graduates from all over the world. With this in mind, it’s vitally important to make yourself stand out from the crowd. Networking events, such as the ECOMS Careers Fair, are a useful way to build the relationships to make this happen. I personally met the partner who employed me for a vacation role during the last summer at the ICAA Careers Fair! I strongly encourage you to speak to a representative from every single firm attending the Careers Fair today. Let them know who you are, and then apply for their graduate or vacation placements. It’s easy too – we’ve listed the details to get you started within the pages of this handbook! A large vote of thanks goes to the major partners of the ECOMS Careers Fair: PwC, KordaMentha and HLB MannJudd. Each of these organisations have fantastic graduate and vacation programmes, with friendly work atmospheres to match (I should know, I work with their recruitment staff on a daily basis!). Come and speak to the ECOMS team whenever you like with questions about the firms who attended our Careers Fair – we have an open door policy, and it’s our job to help you guys out. Good luck with landing your dream job. Kindest regards, Justin Bloomfield. ECOMS President – 2012



SECTION 1 - APPLICATIONS The Resume The Cover Letter


Online Applications






The Dreaded Interview Interview Etiquette

Business Law


12 Accounting


How to Dress

13 Finance


Online Testing Tips

14 Management


Other Tips



PwC Ernst & Young


Notes 40

BDO Grant Thornton


Dept of Finance/Treasury BHP Billiton


36 - 37

OTHER Word from the VP



The Resume (aka The CV)

Don’t produce your profile statement until you have written the first draft of your resume. Essentially it should convey the essence of your resume in a few short lines. Your resume should not be a full recount of every single achievement of your life to date. Recruiters aren’t interested that you came 3rd in the 100m sprint at your year 8 sports carnival. A past jobs section is important to include but keep each job short, sharp, and simple. Your position, the organisation you worked for, a short role description, and relevant dates are sufficient. Note that you only need to put the years and not the months on your CV to illustrate the duration of your past position. Tailor your CV to the specific job you are applying for. Each company will have their own mission statement & selection criteria that will lend itself to certain aspects of your CV. Avoid including: - Photographs - Primary school education - Political Views - The salary you desire - Reasons you are leaving your current job. Always read and re-read your resume, as any spelling mistakes or grammatical errors reflect badly on you as an applicant. Be aware that while grades are important for passing the initial selection stage, extracurricular activities & past work experiences are just as valuable when discussing your resume in interviews. Also note that some big firms use online application systems to generate ‘uniform’ virtual resumes from all your answers, and that, in many cases, your resume will not be assessed until the final interview stage.

The Cover Letter

A cover letter should include the following information: - Your name, address, phone number, and email address, - A formal greeting and the name of the person to whom you are addressing the letter


The first sentence must state the job you are applying for. This should be followed by a few sentences illustrating your competencies and experiences, and a sentence or two establishing why the job is right for you. Finish the letter with a polite request for a reply, your regards, and your name

Online Applications

Online applications are the norm these days. They generally make up the initial screening stage for employers, who then decide whether you are a suitable candidate to progress to the next stage- online testing, phone interviews or interviews in person. The general structure of an online application begins with personal details, followed by a series of short answer behavioural & situational based questions that ask you to draw on your own experiences. You will also face the generic ‘why do you want to work for this firm’ type question. Most online applications have a ‘save’ function that will allow you to do portions of the application at different times, so don’t feel you have to sit down for three hours straight getting from start to finish. On the other hand, if you do walk away from the questionnaire you need to remember to come back to it before the closing date! Do take note that these applications can take up to three hours, and they take even longer if you are required to sit online tests. You should select the firms you wish to apply for very carefully, as you physically cannot apply for them all- you simply will not have the time. (That is not a challenge!) Ensure you have the most up-to-date copy of your Academic Transcript at hand, as many of these applications systems require you to upload a scanned copy along with your resume & cover letter. Academic Transcripts can be ordered through the Student Administration in Hackett Hall. Note that there is a 24-hour processing period (unless you are willing to pay extra- not cool), so don’t leave this to the last minute. Finally it should be reiterated that accurate spelling and grammar are vital to success in the application process. A failure on this front indicates to the selectors that you have not taken enough interest in the job to spend a few short moments proof reading your submission. Cont. pg 10


How long have you been with PwC and what is your current role? I started with Coopers and Lybrand as a graduate in 1995, so have now been with the firm for about 17 years and currently I am a partner within our Corporate Tax practice. I also have the responsibility of being the Campus Recruitment lead partner for Perth Tax and Legal as well as being the Oil and Gas Industry Leader for the Perth office and the Perth representative on our Japan Services Desk. What role does a partner take within the company at PwC? My role is essentially split across three areas : people, client and firm. The people side of my role involves recruitment of both campus and lateral talent as well as coaching and mentoring our staff. The client section involves servicing my existing client base and business development activity. Managing and monitoring the operations of our business falls under the firm category. How did you arrive in your current position? When I was going through university, there was no such thing as a vacation program, so I applied to all of the then Big 8 firms as a graduate in the second year of my degree. I ended up taking a position with Coopers and Lybrand because of all the interviews I attended, the Coopers and Lybrand partners were definitely the easiest to talk to. Initially I started in the International Assignment Solutions division and did that for about two years before the opportunity arose to transfer into the Corporate Tax team. Property was my initial industry focus in Coporate Tax and I did that for about two years before moving into the resources industry where I have been ever since. For the last five or so years I have moved to a more specialised focus in Oil and Gas. How much study would you advise a student to undertake to one day arrive in a similar position? I don’t think that there is a definitive amount of study as such, it is all about efficiency and standard of output. You should do sufficient study to ensure that you are completing your work to a high standard. This is important as it generally transfers in to work ethic in the workplace, where like university, people learn and understand concepts at different rates.


How important are your final grades to get to your position? Grades are of some importance, however there is a real focus on being well balanced and having pursuits outside of your studies. What character qualities do you think a partner should have? I don’t think that the qualities a partner should have differs from the qualities I expect of any other person I interact with. I really value trustworthiness, respect, appreciation and honesty in our parters, our staff and our clients. Are there any important lessons that you have learnt working in the firm that you would like to share with students who aspire to be at your level one day? Trying not to sound cliche, it is really important to remember where you started out, and who helped you along the journey. Never forget your family and friends and never be resistant to learning new things. Any last words of advice for someone considering joining the team at PwC? Please remember the following things when going to an interview: - Show the interviewer who you really are. We are interested in getting to know you as a person, not just your technical ability. - Share your views. - Try to remain relaxed. - Make sure that you have done your homework on PwC!

William Campbell Partner


The Dreaded Interview

First up, do your research. It’s a really good idea to have a look through the company’s website the night before your interview. Seek to familiarise yourself with the service line you are applying for and perhaps a current company initiative or two. The website may also give you tips in what sort of values the company will expect you to meet as an applicant. Be early. Sweat is a symptom of stress and running, both of which are common occurrences when you arrive late or with little time to spare. You can never be too early! If you get to the interview with more than 15 minutes to spare, take a slow stroll in the shade and relax a bit. When you are called in, start off with a good firm handshake (see tips for a good handshake, below) and remember to introduce yourself to the interviewers.

Interview etiquette

Following the correct etiquette in an interview cannot make you the best candidate, but failure to follow etiquette can certainly make you the worst candidate. Handshaking A good handshake is essential in the Business world. Follow these simple tips when going in for the handshake with your interviewer: · Keep your hand open when moving in & don’t close it until the other person has given you their entire hand · You should aim for the joint of your thumb to be nestled over the joint of their thumb · Move your hand vertically up and down, (not back and forth) · A firm handshake is good, but not a bone-crushing one: you don’t want to separate the interviewer’s fingers from their hand! · Make good eye contact throughout the handshake & smile · Any longer than about 3 seconds is getting weird. What about handshaking for women? Follow the exact same method as described above. Do not compromise: this is 21st-century business, not Victorian England. Remember, a sloppy handshake will put your interviewer off you before the interview has even started.


How to dress

Each firm will usually send out an informative email before your interview, and in it you will most probably find a dress code. Unless you’re applying to be a Scuba Instructor or a Nuclear Decontamination Officer, the dress code will usually be ‘business wear’. If you’re a gentleman and you’re serious about the job then you’ve got it easy- you will wear a full suit and tie with polished black shoes. Cuff-links are optional but the tie is not. Your suit should be black or a shade of grey; your tie should not be skinny. Women have a far more difficult task in interpreting ‘business attire’, so we’ve had our ladies break it up into steps: Step 1: Pants or skirt? This is completely up to you, and comes down to what you feel comfortable in. If you can’t walk in a skirt, or if you feel silly in pants- don’t wear it. Dress pants should be black or grey with a straight leg. Dress skirts should fall between just-above and just-below the knee. As a general guide-line, you should be able to walk but you shouldn’t be flashing the interviewer either. Pencil skirts are good as long as they are flattering, but other business style skirts are also suitable. Step 2: Jacket A matching business jacket is recommended, but not required. Step 3: Top A business blouse should be worn. General guidelines here are that your blouse should be flattering, not revealing. Remember to wear an appropriate bra- red showing through a white blouse, or strange patterns in your otherwise smooth blouse fabric will detract from your appearance and from your interview. Sleeve length is optional, but your shoulders should be covered. Blouse colours and styles are completely up to you, just don’t wear anything garish. Step 4: Accessories and hair Any jewellery you wear should be understated; your hair should be tidy. Step 5: Shoes A low-to-moderate heel that you can walk in is the way to go. If you have to change the way you walk to accommodate your shoes, they are too high. Go for an enclosed toe, and match the colour to your pants, blouse, or accessories.


Step 6: Bags If you must take a bag it should match your attire. A big beach bag is not appropriate, nor is that sparkly over-the-top clutch that you take clubbing. Aim for a small, plainly coloured bag that will fade into the background, not take over your appearance. Basically, dress smartly.

How to get through the online testing

Many employers with online application systems require candidates that fulfil the initial standards criteria to complete online testing. The results of these tests are used to establish your fitness on an academic and personal level. Be aware that these tests require significant amounts of time to complete. In some cases you will be required to complete up to four tests, each of which can take anything from fifteen minutes to one hour. Each test has a time limit, with the exception of the personality test: as such, our advice is to ensure you are in a quiet environment and will not be disturbed while taking the tests. The four most common tests will focus on one area each: mathematics; comprehensive reading abilities; logic skills; and personality. Don’t be too concerned about these tests: they are multiple choice and not very difficult. In some cases you’ll find yourself faced with a primary-school level maths question- so as long as you’re not an Arts student you’ll be fine. However, the questions do, to some extent, weed out those who do not have the basic skills required to compete in their respective industries. These aptitude tests can be used by employers in many different ways. The tests do directly affect whether you make it through to the first round of interviews. The results of them may also influence which questions you are asked in the interviews and the division you are interviewed by. A word of warning: do NOT attempt to cheat on these tests. At every Interview and Assessment Day (the next stage in the process) the company will give you a similar test under supervised conditions.


Other tips

· Do not sit down until interviewer sits. While this isn’t essential, it is common courtesy. · Keep eye contact for as long as possible (no matter how awkward you think it is), and never get caught staring out the window. · Try to be conversational: interviewers are always trying to gauge your interpersonal skills.

Out in the Field with E&Y “Since starting at Ernst & Young I’ve been offered many initiatives to assist my career development. When I started here I was allocated a female counsellor, who I believed acted as a role model and allowed me to see how far women could progress at Ernst & Young. I also found it extremely comforting that there was another female graduate within my group, for although all the males within the work place are supportive, it is beneficial to be able to bounce ideas off someone who is like-minded. Although I am working in a quite a male dominated area, the atmosphere of the working environment is not at all geared towards a “boy’s club.” Ernst & Young is aware of diversity in the workplace, and stresses the importance of having women in roles that are traditionally considered as male.” - Louise


Economics Overview An economics degree can lead to a highly rewarding career, as well as a direct understanding of some of the fundamental processes that govern many of the things that we do in everyday life. The degree itself is open in its prospects of future careers and allows students to move into a career that interests them using many different avenues. While on its own it doesn’t have one prescribed and defined job path, it can lead to some of the most rewarding careers out there. This sets it apart from most of the other Commerce majors which lead you to a clearly prescribed, but less dynamic, vocation. Economics degrees teach students not just about the field, but how to think about the world. The economy is integral to everything we do in business, and the economics major teaches many diverse concepts: from the base theories and rules behind how trade works; to how business decisions are made; and, indirectly, to how a lot of the world functions. It is the focus on the broad underwritten concepts that govern society that equips economic students to work in many fields of industry. Professional Qualifications There are no specific additional qualifications that are required to work within the field of economics. However, as with many of degrees, having a degree with honours will make you more competitive when entering the workforce. With hundreds of students graduating each year, any extra qualifications or hands-on experience will be an advantage when you are looking for that your graduate role. Many companies offering graduate work favour students with previous experience of vacation work at their firm. Indeed, some firms hire up to 70% of their graduates from previous vacation-work students. Job Opportunities Many economists will work as consultants, acting to provide advice on efficiency and best actions in a range of fields, from mining, to parliament, to architectural design. Government: The Public sector is one of the largest employers of economics graduates in a wide range of roles. Employers vary from the Reserve Bank of Australia, to the Chamber of Commerce and Industry, to the Australian Bureau of Statistics; or to something on a smaller scale such as local


government employment. There are a wide range of businesses and activities that you could be performing under these bodies, and while on average they have a lower pay level, government positions- as the most recognised path into the economic field- are very much sought after by graduates. Corporate: Firms in the corporate sector are most likely to offer vacation work and as such are often a student’s first look into the world of economic careers. Such corporations often work through a process of continual training of graduates and move them progressively into positions of higher responsibility internally over time. The corporate sector offers good opportunities for travel and secondments to graduates who continue to excel within the company. Niche: Firms often focus on economic work with specific markets in mind. Most of these firms are very small on the personnel front and do not actively recruit students for vacation work. Jobs in this area often combine work with interests in other sectors and are well-suited for students who have a strong background in subjects other then economics. Salary Starting salaries in economics start at around $50,000 per annum and increase as you gain experience; the private sector usually offers slightly higher rates or a more accelerated increase. Economic graduates are by no means limited to analytic roles, and the transition into fields such as management, politics, journalism, or banking is common. As with every field, it is only through continual work and connection with the developments in their field that economists can continue to develop their business practices as well as form valuable professional links. Helpful Links  



Overview Marketing can be defined as “the activity, set of institutions, and processes for creating, communicating, delivering, and exchanging offerings that have value for customers, clients, partners, and society at large.” From this definition, it is clear to see that marketing is a very diverse major, with many different exciting and financially rewarding career paths. While a university marketing major is an incredibly useful backing to get you into the field, most jobs are sourced from the creative and innovative talents of the worker. Once you have broken into the industry, many marketing careers offer the individual a largely blank canvas for them to work with, allowing them to be resourceful and stretch their imaginative capabilities. Your qualifications can be expanded at any time, with the most notable of these being the achievement of the Certified Practised Marketer qualification. The marketing industry is relatively young, but as technology and mass media continue to expand, its importance in society will increase exponentially, giving great potential for the success of creative and intelligent minds. Professional Qualifications The CPM, or Certified Practised Marketer, is the professional, peerrecognised benchmark. This is a post-graduate qualification, and while a study of marketing at a tertiary level is an integral part, the qualification cannot be achieved without proof of successful application of marketing knowledge and skills. To qualify for a CPM, applicants typically need a minimum of five years’ practical marketing experience and a recognised marketing qualification: or 10 years’ marketing experience/practice and an extensive portfolio of achievements. The qualification is achieved through a points system, which is described on the Australian Marketing Institute website. Many people in the marketing industry attempt to gain a CPM to increase their individual value to businesses. This often results in greater recognition and overall higher salaries. Job Opportunities (Fields) Public Relations: Public Relations are used to enhance a company’s reputation. This is achieved by managing the flow of information between an organisation and the wider public. PR Officers monitor public opinion about the company and develop strategies to make sure the intended public


audience sees it as ‘highly regarded’. PR Officers prepare interviews, releases, speeches, public presentations, and events. They must have strong verbal and written communication skills coupled with the ability to think critically. Every large corporation has a PR department and the field is monitored by the Public Relations Institute of Australia. As PR Officers have many desirable attributes and work under pressure, average salaries are around $65,000 per annum. Market Researcher: Market Researchers gather and analyse information about markets and customers in order to determine the level of public demand for particular products and services. This information is gathered by conducting surveys and questionnaires of customer preferences, and then forecasting these preferences for the benefit of their business’ decisionmaking in the future. Market Researchers can be employed by a specialised Research Company, by individual companies in the industry relating to their research, by the Media, or by government organisations. Salaries start around $50,000 per annum, climbing to the occupation average of $80,000. Senior Researchers and Managers have the opportunity to earn in excess of $150,000 per annum. Marketing Co-ordinator: Marketing Co-ordinators promote a business, its company name, its products, and its services. They understand consumer trends, and devise and execute strategic plans for their company’s future. The role involves elements of the positions of PR Officer and Market Researcher; and successful applicants have strong communication, interpersonal and organisational skills, and an ardent ability to analyse and interpret data. The average annual salary is again around $80,000, while entrant graduates can expect a salary of $45,000 per annum. Senior Executive Marketing Co-ordinators can also earn in excess of $150,000. Helpful Links


Advertising: Advertising is a form of communication used to encourage or persuade an audience in a particular manner. Many Advertising companies don’t advertise available positions, preferring to hire through a process of direct applications and personal contacts. This is a very difficult- but extremely popular- area of the marketing field to break into. Contacts in the industry are essential, and any opportunity to attend networking functions or small projects should be jumped at. Most advertising professionals are under the age of 40. It is important to learn how to handle rejection when entering the industry, as your personal creative ideas can be viewed very differently by another individual. There are multiple facets of advertising which all contribute towards the final product: Account Service: This provides a link between the client and the advertising agency, and successful applicants think creatively to determine a strategy which would be employed for the product, then oversee the project in action. Strategic Planners: These Planners conduct research to focus on what the consumer wants and needs, and, by using this information, pitch creative ideas for possible advertisements to the Creatives. Creatives: Creatives turn the above information into the basis of advertisements, and are the ‘ideas people’ in the industry. They work alongside art directors to decide which media genre would be best to convey the advertisement and then move onto completing it. Studio Production: Studio workers often have complementary qualifications in Graphic Arts or Multimedia, and use the latest technology for both audio-visual and print media to perfect the work of Creatives. Media Planners: Media Planners identify the target audience for the advertisement and buy the relevant media space (eg. TV slots or Newspaper advertising space). Complementary qualifications in Business, Psychology or Communications, are highly recommended.


Business Law (and getting into Law)

If you’re a choosing a Business Law major, you’re likely to fall into one of two streams. The first is that you’ve chosen it to complement another major (it works pretty well with almost all of them). The second is that you’re hoping to get into Law at a post-graduate level- and Business Law is the best way of trying Law on for size. Doing Business Law won’t land you many Law-related jobs on its own, but it does give you skills that are useful across the board, as well as a taster of what studying Law is like. Stream 1: Considered a General Firm? One thing you may not have considered is working for a ‘general’ firm. By ‘general’ I really just mean any firm that can’t be described as purely catering to graduates of one major- like an Accounting firm. Studying Business Law could give you an important leg-up on other candidates doing a specific major which is less relevant. It also shows that you’re capable of thinking analytically, which isn’t always required or emphasised in other majors. A general firm isn’t a generic firm: it’s just one that we can’t classify as solely the domain of another major. This includes areas such as Insurance, Consumer Goods (firms such as Mars Australia), and Government. Below is a list of industries which are business-oriented but don’t require a specific major (because general firms are easily overlooked!). This list isn’t exhaustive; every firm needs some level of business staff. - Consumer Goods - Government - Property - Retail Banking - Tourism - Mining & Energy - Insurance - Transport & Logistics - Technology If you’re still looking for more ideas, try searching for companies on the ASX or the Fortune 500 and see what kind of roles they have for graduates. Stream 2: Getting into Law If, however, your mind is set on studying and working in Law, then you have a fair amount of time left to figure out your career. If you’ve already secured an assured pathway into the JD programme, and you’re sure that Law is for you, then you can afford to sit back and relax a little. If you are relying on the standard pathway, keep track of the Law Faculty’s website as they will be publicising the entry process later in 2012. For more information contact the ECOMS Education Vice-President, Rob Purdew, or Blackstone Society’s President, Alex Drake-Brockman, by emailing and respectively.


KordaMentha is a market leading boutique professional services firm. We specialise in: >>Corporate Recovery and Insolvency; >>Turnaround and Restructuring; >>Forensic Services; and >>Real Estate Advisory. Working at KordaMentha, you will be given real responsibility. We will give you the exposure to work on diverse engagements and the ability to be directly involved in running companies. You will gain satisfaction by contributing to the potential turnaround of an often challenging situation and be proud of the fact that you will assist in making a difference in the lives of many people. A combination of well planned training through the KordaMentha Business School and on- the-job experience ultimately provides you with top notch business skills. You will develop a diverse skill set, including: >>Accounting, finance and business aptitude; >>Powerful communication and negotiation skills; >>Critical and strategic thinking expertise; and >>Rapid commercial decision-making flair. As a KordaMentha graduate you can expect: >>Exposure to high profile and diverse clients; >>Travel opportunities; >>A supportive team environment; >>Fully funded Chartered Accountants Program support, as well as training through the KordaMentha Business School; and >>An active social culture including team sports, involvement in various charities and social functions.

Accounting Overview Accounting is a diverse career path, one that spans into many different areas of the financial sector. The Accounting major opens up the first door into this world of opportunity which can lead the participant anywhere- from the CFO of a large company, to a Forensic Accountant investigating fraud. Accounting is an avenue into a professional career that can take you to most countries and almost every industry in the world. As an integral part of the Commerce degree at UWA, Accounting partners perfectly with most majors and pairs especially well with Finance. It also is a recognized major in its own right and can be used as a springboard into further studies. Professional Qualifications A major in accounting is well recognized as a valid professional qualification. However, it is advised to further your studies after the completion of your degree by undertaking the CA (Chartered Accountants) or the CPA (Certified Public Accountant) qualifications. Each of these greatly boost the earning potential and professionalism of the qualification holder as well as opening doors that a standard Bachelor of Commerce with an Accounting Major might not. Both qualifications require units that may not feature in the requirements for a BComm degree. Both the CA & the CPA websites feature information about which units make you eligible for the qualification. Job Opportunities As mentioned before, Accounting is a very diverse career path and job opportunities are available in both Public and Private sectors. Corporate: Audit, Taxation, Insolvency, and Advisory The most common path for a graduate with an accounting major is through entry into one of “the big four”. Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG, and PwC are the world’s four largest accounting firms and all recruit a substantial annual intake of graduates. These large tier firms offer a career in individual sectors of the accounting practice focusing on areas such as Taxation, Insolvency, and Auditing. There are also many opportunities that arise out of the mid-tier firms, who also take-up a large graduate pool. Firms in the mid-tier level include BDO, Grant Thornton, Moore Stephens, Pitcher Partners, and RSM Bird Cameron. All offer graduates similar positions to those offered by the big four, but with a different atmosphere that some graduates find appealing.


Government Sector Accounting Another large area that graduates can get into is public sector accounting. There are many government and government-affiliated positions that require accountants, with the largest being the Australian Taxation Office. Other government departments that recruit accounting graduates include the State Governments, the Department of Finance, the Australian Treasury and the Department of the Auditor General. Local: Bookkeeping, Personal Tax Accounting Small firms naturally have a lower graduate intake, and can thus be overlooked when graduates seek employment. However they do hire graduates on a consistent basis. The attractive aspect of working within local accounting offices is that it offers greater opportunity for relationshipbuilding with clients, and there can be more of a personal aspect to be found in helping individuals with their finances. Advertisement for these positions can be found in weekly newspapers across the country. Salary In terms of salary, there is a toss up between the earning potential of a Chartered Accountant and a Certified Public Accountant. estimates the CA salary between $44,810 -$100,503 per annum and the CPA salary between $44,152 - $94,012 per annum. Both qualifications return similar salaries in standard accounting positions, with a stock accountant with a CA reeling in $38,899 - $77,316 compared to the standard accountant with a CPA bringing in $39,171 - $75,129. These are all ballpark figures and salaries do vary largely according to specific firms as well as individual pay scale level and duties.

Helpful Links


How did you get where you are today? Lots and lots of study! I also think loyalty toward your firm is super important and demonstrating a willingness to do your job to the best of your ability. These type of qualities are invaluable when trying to progress in an organisation. What does your role entail? What does a typical day involve for you? My days are generally all over the shop. I bounce between a number of consulting assignments, ad-hoc assistance for CIT staff and internal meetings. Where possible I try to sneak in some physical activity in the middle hours of the day. What interpersonal skills are essential for your role? A preparedness to be flexible is very important, delegation and constant communication with staff and clients. What do most people find challenging/difficult about a role like this? The ability to time manage and juggle a number of assignments at any one time. It is also difficult to interpret complex legislation in a way that is clear and presentable to clients. Describe the team you work with: How is it structured? What sorts of qualifications do they have? Our specialist team is made up of 4 members each with different skills and abilities. Currently, we have one Partner, two Managers and a graduate. Each member of the team is University qualified while the senior three of us have our Chartered Accountants qualification. What were you looking for in an employer when you took your current role? Above all, an employer that supported a work-life balance. I also wanted to be challenged and forced to step out of my comfort zone. What types of benefits are essential to attract the best people? Rewarding high and consistently good performance. It is essential for staff to understand that their efforts are noticed and that they have the ability in their everyday work to make an impression. What jobs or careers paths could a person in your position consider in the future? There are a number of possibilities. I have had the opportunity to learn a number of skills that would be transferrable to commerce/industry or even a small business environment.


Are you considering any study or professional development in the future? Why? Having a break at the moment, however it is always appealing to think of the opportunities further study could present. Possibly an MBA at some point down the track? Are you involved with any professional associations, and why? I am a member of the Institute of Chartered Accountants. Completing the CA program has contributed heavily toward my career progression and also brings about a level of respect and trust when dealing with clients. How do you keep up to date? Reading daily tax updates (even for a few minutes) is something that I have made a habit of. Natural variation in the clients we deal with also contributes to broadening my knowledge on a day-to-day basis. What tips for success can you give those aspiring to work in your field? Be noticed, people are always watching so put yourself out there and don’t be intimidated by the thought of failure. Or, what level of responsibility do you give your graduates? I endeavour to give the graduates as much responsibility as possible. This allows them to develop a sense of ownership on their jobs and increases overall engagement. What sort of person would enjoy it? Someone with an open mind who enjoys a challenge. What is the atmosphere like at work? The firm is quite young on a whole which brings a level of enthusiasm and vibrancy to all interactions with staff. It surprising how much “accountants” enjoy a drink as well! What sort of people would a company look to hire? People with strong technical, interpersonal skills and the enthusiasm required to learn. What advice would you give someone going into this field? As above. Aaron Ellwood Manager, Indirect Tax


Finance Introduction Broadly, there are four areas of finance: corporate finance and wholesale banking; financial markets; managed funds and superannuation; and retail baning and private wealth management. Nearly 400,000 people are employed in financial services in Australia, and in the past there has always been demand for good graduates. However, job opportunities have become scarcer in recent years with the fallout of economic crises overseas affecting the Australian industry. Job Opportunities Stockbroking: Stockbrokers buy and sell shares and other securities in financial markets (such as the stock and bonds markets). They enable the smooth operation of the markets by bringing buyers and sellers together. Stockbrokers typically work long hours, and require good sales and communication skills. Brokers must be effective and quick under pressure, and have good analytical and numerical skills. Salary: 55k - 110k Financial Planning: Financial planners specialise in helping people deal with personal finance issues such as investment, tax, superannuation and retirement plans. Their role is primarily focused on tailoring plans and strategies to suit clients’ particular needs, goals and circumstances. Financial planners require good people skills, as well as sound problemsolving abilities. Salary: 50k - 90k Superannuation / Managed Funds: Fund managers are responsible for growing the wealth of their clients through investment. They are usually in charge of large portfolios consisting of a wide range of asset classes (e.g. property, shares, bonds, etc.). People rely on competent management of their funds, especially those that will be dependent on superannuation funds in retirement. As such, fund managers require solid analytical and problem-solving skills to make investment decisions. Salary: 70k - 120k Insurance Brokerage: Insurance brokers co-ordinate the insurance needs of individuals or corporations. Instead of dealing directly with many insurance companies, many firms and individuals choose to employ an insurance broker. Insurance brokers shop around for the best policies for their clients


and manage both premiums and payouts. Insurance brokers require good communication, and strong analytical and people skills. Salary: 45 - 85k Private Wealth Management: Private wealth management is an investment advisory that incorporates financial planning, investment portfolio management and a number of aggregated financial services. High-net-worth individuals, small business owners and families may need the services of a private wealth manager, who typically co-ordinates their banking, estate planning, legal resources, tax and investment. Good communication, analytical, and problem solving skills are essential to private wealth management. Salary: 65k - 115k Financial Analyst: Financial analysts assess the viability, stability, and profitability of a business or project. They analyse many pieces of financial information in order to evaluate the many investment opportunities faced by firms, and to advise the firm of the appropriate decisions to be made in each case. Financial analysts require strong analytical skills, and a keen eye for detail. Salary: 60k - 100k Relationship Manager: Usually found in corporate banking, the job of the relationship manager is to find and manage clients. They will be in charge of large portfolios, such as properties or equities, and will also be responsible for large loans in the range of millions of dollars. To succeed, you must be excellent at working with your customers, communicating with them, and have an excellent knowledge of finance, and networking skills (in order to initially acquire clients). Salary: 50k - 100k Helpful Links  


Risk Manager: In this job, an employee is concerned with credit risk, model risk, and operational risk. They monitor risk, develop contingency plans, and make decisions on handling risk. Not only must you be apt with numbers, you must also be able to think ahead and work under pressure. It is not always necessary to have a good knowledge of banking. Corporate and Institutional banking: A graduate in this area might be involved in debt capital markets, acquisition finance, loans, and hybrid securities during their rotation. Employees might assess the credit quality of assets and assess financial modelling, prepare legal documentation, liaise with ratings agencies and clients, advise companies engaging in a merger and acquisition, determine valuations, and negotiate prices and terms. This can be one of the most demanding areas of finance and requires people who can work under high pressure with strict deadlines; people who understand numbers and can analyse them critically, and who have good people skills. This is a highly competitive area and students interested in entering this field should consider doing a number of internships before they graduate.


Overview The main role of a manager is to help an organisation to achieve high performance. This is done through the management process which involves planning, organising, leading, and controlling an organisation’s human and material resources in order to accomplish the various goals set out by the organisation. All types of organisations require some kind of management; hence a major in management could potentially lead you to a vocation in any field in the workforce that you desire. A degree incorporating a management major is generally enhanced significantly by coupling it with a second major such as marketing, finance, or human resource management. By specialising in another field as well as management you will have a very competitive advantage when looking for employment after graduating. In order to further increase your chances of employment when you graduate, you could apply to undertake Honours. A Bachelor Degree with Honours demonstrates that you have high level of expertise and knowledge in your degree specific area. Professional Qualifications The most noteworthy professional qualifications relating to management are a Master in Business Administration (MBA) and an Executive MBA. Admission requirements for a MBA include either a Bachelor’s degree with


a weighted average mark of at least 60 per cent from UWA, or an equivalent degree from another tertiary institution, plus at least two years’ work experience; OR completion of the Graduate Diploma in Business from UWA with an average mark of at least 65 per cent, or equivalent from another tertiary institution. For an Executive MBA the admission requirements are a Bachelor’s Degree from UWA, or equivalent degree from another tertiary institution, and at least five years’ relevant work experience; OR a minimum of 8 years’ relevant work experience. An MBA or an Executive MBA would greatly assist in moving to a higher level of management within an organisation. Job Opportunities (Fields) Again, all types of organisation require some kind of management- which means that a degree in management could lead you to a wide range of career paths. A couple of specific jobs that you would be qualified for follow. Management consultant: Management Consultants are required to study the procedures and systems of an organisation in order to discern how the organisation as a whole can operate at its best. A role as a Management Consultant could include tasks such as researching information about the individual workers in an organisation, the tasks that they’re assigned, and how long they take to complete these tasks; identifying problems within an organisation; and finding and assisting with the implementation of solutions to these problems. A Management Consultant should, therefore, have good problem solving skills, good communication skills, and be interested in people, processes, and resource management. Office Administrator: The role of an Office Administrator involves ensuring administration activities within an organisation run smoothly. This generally includes management of human resources, budgets, and business locations, to name a few. Generally an office administrator will be required to have good communication skills, be able to supervise, have an aptitude for working with computers, and be well organised. Salary: Entry-level salaries for Management jobs can range from around $35,000 per annum in jobs such as Retail Management to $60,000 per annum in jobs such as Project Management. After gaining experience in the work force, a Management degree could see you earning in excess of $170,000 per annum in fields like Operations and Project Management.  


Firm Name McGrathNicol Discipline Focus Accounting Commerce Business Service Lines Corporate Advisory Available Forensic Services Transaction Services Corporate Recovery Grad Application Melbourne: Monday March 26th Dates Close: Adelaide: Wednesday March 28th Sydney: Thursday March 29th Brisbane: Friday March 30th Perth: Monday April 2nd Canberra: Tuesday April 10th Perth Vac-Work Open Nationally: July/August Application Dates: Careers Website Email Contact Phone Contact: (02) 9338 2600

Firm Name Institute of Charterd Accountants in Australia Discipline Focus Accounting Perth Vac-Work Refer to the Institute’s Employment Guide Application Dates: Careers Website Email Contact Phone Contact: 1300 137 322 Additional Info: Two competitions currently on offer: - Fun Photo Competition - Student Challenge (


Firm Name PwC (PricewaterhouseCoopers) Discipline Focus All Disciplines are considered Service Lines Assurance Available Tax & Legal Private Clients Advisory Grad Application Recruitment occurs on a rolling basis Dates Close: Perth Vac-Work Recruitment occurs on a rolling basis Application Dates: Careers Website Email Contact Phone Contact: (08) 9238 3000

Firm Name Ernst & Young Discipline Focus Accounting Economics Finance Business Service Lines Audit Available Tax Advisory (Risk, IT Risk & Assurance) Transaction (Valuations, Restructuring & Mergers Grad Application When positions are filled Dates Close: Perth Vac-Work If you are in you penultimate year, apply ASAP for Application Dates: vac-work. Applications close when candidates are found. There is also a one-day ‘Compas Program’ internship for students in lower years Careers Website Phone Contact: (08) 9429 2384


Firm Name BDO Discipline Focus Accounting Service Lines Audit Available Corporate & International Tax Private & Entrepreneurial Clients Corporate Finance Grad Application March 16th Dates Close: Careers Website Email Contact Phone Contact: (08) 6382 4643 Additional Info: Applications open to Australian and New Zealand Citizens/Permanent Residents

Firm Name Grant Thornton Discipline Focus Accounting Service Lines Audit & Assurance Available Corporate & International Tax Private Business Wealth Management Grad Application April 3rd Dates Close: Careers Website Email Contact Phone Contact: (08) 9480 2000 Additional Info: Applications open to Australian and New Zealand Citizens/Permanent Residents in their final year and can gain entry to the ICAA program


Firm Name Department of Finance/Treasury Discipline Focus Accounting Finance Economics Management Service Lines Economics Available Strategic Policy and Evaluation Infrastructure and Finance People and Governance Strategic Projects Grad Application Mid Year: Open: March 17th Dates Close: Close: April 2nd End Year: Open: March 17th Close: May 14th Careers Website Email Contact Phone Contact: Sourcing & Development Consultants: Diana Morellini: 6551 1071 Simone Kirkness: 6551 1092

Firm Name BHP Billiton Discipline Focus Natural Resources - Mining, Oil & Gas Service Lines Economics Available Accounting Finance Communications Management IT Grad Application March 31st Dates Close: Perth Vac-Work Open: July Application Dates: Careers Website


Firm Name Accenture BHP Billiton BP Optus

Open Grad - Open Grad - Open Grad - Open Grad - MidYear Grad - Open Proctor & Gamble Intern - Open QANTAS Grad - March QBE Grad - Open QR National Grad - Open Rio Tinto Grad - Open Shell Grad - Open Telstra Grad - Open Woodside Grad - Open Aldi Grad - Open Grad - Open ANZ Intern - July ACCC Grad - Open ANAO Grad - Open ATO Grad - Open Grad - Open BDO VAC - Open Grad - Open Boral Intern - Open MidYear & DFT Grad - 17 Mar Grant Thornton Grad - Open Ernst & Young Grad - Open Grad - Open Comm Bank VAC - July Grad - Open Deloitte VAC - Open 36

Close 31 Mar 8 Apr 1 Apr

6 Apr 30 Apr 2 April 6 Apr 10 Apr 1 Apr 6 May 1 Apr 3 Apr 16 Mar End April 2 Apr 14 May 3 Apr As Filled 29 Mar August 1 Apr 22 Apr

Firm Name DFAT Deutsche Bank KPMG Korda Mentha Leighton Contractors Lion Macquarie Group Monadelphous Mars Australia NAB OZ Minerals Opus Consultants Pitcher Partners Protiviti RBA Worley Parsons Xstrata

Open Grad - Open Grad - Open Grad - Open VAC - Open Grad - Open Grad - Open all year Grad - Open Grad - Open Intern - June Grad - Open VAC - July Grad - Open Grad - Open Grad - Open VAC - 3 July Grad - Web Closed 2012 Grad - Open Grad - Open Grad - Open VAC - Sept Grad - Open VAC - 1 July


Close 25 Mar 28 June 6 Apr 2 Apr

22 Mar July April August 28 Mar 1 Apr 30 Mar 29 Aug

15 Apr April 27 Apr 15 Apr 19 Aug

How long have you been with EY and what is your role within EY? I have been with Ernst & Young for just over 15 years and I am a Partner within our Advisory division. What role does a partner take at EY? As an owner of the business, a Partner has many different roles. The two key roles are to manage clients and staff. From a client perspective, we are responsible for the quality of our service delivery, our relationships and ultimately the revenue that we derive. From a staff perspective, we must attract the best people (graduates and lateral hires), we must motivate them and provide meaningful career paths. How did you arrive in your current position at EY? My career has taken a few different directions since I studied Accounting and Information Systems at university. What attracted me to the accounting profession and Ernst & Young was my ability to apply both of those skill sets. My first role was within the Assurance division where I stayed for about 5 years. I then moved into the Advisory division where I now consult on all matters related to risk including business risk and IT risk. What are your current duties? A Partner has two primary duties related to clients and staff. I am responsible for a number of clients in the resources sector (both mining and oil and gas) and I look after a team of 65 staff. How much study would you advise a student to undertake to one day arrive in a similar position? I think that the most important thing for a student to do while at university is to fully apply themselves to all aspects of their study whilst also having an eye open for future employment opportunities. I find that many students are unaware of the potential jobs out there as well as how to get those jobs. Remember that students are ultimately responsible for their own careers. What qualities do you think a partner should have? I think that a Partner needs to have many of the following qualities integrity, respect, teaming, energy, enthusiasm, leadership and the ability to build interpersonal relationships. Are there any particular skills that you use on a daily basis? Every single day I will use my interpersonal skills just as much as I use my technical skills.


How much does a partner make in terms of an annual salary? Partners rarely disclose this information. However, it is safe to say that our salaries are in line with what Chief Financial Officers make. Are there any important lessons that you have learnt working in the firm that you would like to share with students? I have learnt that honesty, open communication and energy are very important attributes for successful people. Any last words of advice for someone considering joining the team at EY? Whenever I am speaking to a group of students I always ask them “How would you differentiate yourself from the rest of the students in the room?� So if you can answer that question you have a good chance of standing out from the pack and joining us for vacation work or as a graduate.

Sarah Perrins




A Word from the VP (aka The Thank-yous) This handbook couldn’t have been produced without a small but dedicated group of amazing people. I would like to extend my thanks to my Sub-Committee and Business Officer, James, who have worked exceptionally hard to bring you this information- I’m talking 3am nights without the comfort of facebook here. Special thanks should also go to the Communications Officer, Jeremy, who has made the item you are holding not only pretty, but also formatted it and made sure it wasn’t a stapled sheaf of paper! A second round of thanks go to Jeremy for being ridiculously calm about the length of time it takes me to put commas in the right places, and to Alyce for keeping me sane with innumerous cups of tea throughout the editing process. Any list of thanks wouldn’t be complete without me extending my personal ones to both our Past and Current Presidents, Matthew and Justintwo amazing guys who have brought me out of my hermit’s shell and coaxed the best from me over the past year. A final thanks should go to you, the student holding this book. It may sound lame, but without you there wouldn’t be a handbook, nor a fair, nor any of the things that I’ve had a tremendous time organising. I hope that you enjoy our Career Fair, and that you make the best of the opportunities it offers. In fear of repeating Justin, I’ll encourage you to talk to every single representative here: not just to network; but to pick their brains for how they got their jobs, what their career path has been like, and how they find working in their field- talking to someone with real experience is the best way to answer all the questions that we haven’t! Whether you have your career mapped out already, or you haven’t a clue, ECOMS is here to help- come and find us any time. Warm regards, Elselynn Leighton ECOMS Vice-President for Business



The Monetary Expansion - 2012 Careers Fair Handbook  

The Monetary Expansion is a guide for all business school students wanting to know more about intern and graduate employment opportunities,...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you