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University of Western Australia
Consultant in Risk Advisory at EY
Geogia studied Bachelor of Commerce (Economics and Management) at The University of Western Australia.
What's your job about?
EY is a professional services organisation that provides assurance, tax, advisory and transaction advisory services to clients. EY clients range in size and industry, from international corporations to specialised start-ups, across the private and public sectors.
I’m a consultant in the Risk Transformation team which sits within EY Advisory Services. We work in teams to solve our client’s business problems, help manage their risks and challenges, and assist them in developing opportunities for growth. My main responsibility is supporting the fieldwork by conducting client interviews, developing an understanding of their business processes, and conducting testing to determine areas of improvement.
My day-to-day is always changing depending on what client engagement I’m working on. I typically work between the EY office and the client site, either focusing on just one project or assisting the senior staff in my team with several projects at once. I’m currently working on a regulatory compliance piece of work, which involves developing a good understanding of the client’s legal obligations and help in ensuring that their in-house processes are compliant with these obligations. I’m also working on client engagement in the financial services sector, examining their products and services. Both projects are completely different so the individual tasks involved are also very different – but both involve a lot of Excel functions and a lot of PowerPoint presentations!
What's your background?
My family lived just outside of Byron Bay before moving to Perth for my father’s work. When I was young and people asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up I had two answers; a ballerina and then a businesswoman. I left high school a year early to move overseas and study ballet, however, after three of the best years of my life, I decided that maybe I was meant for business after all and moved back to Australia to start university.
During my time at university, I was very involved in student societies and volunteering. Through these activities, I was lucky enough to meet and network with people from EY teams who encouraged me to apply to the Vacationer Program. I applied and got offered a Vacationer position for three weeks during the summer break, and then was offered a Graduate role at the end of that.
After my internship, I was invited to apply for a position to attend the EY International Internship Leadership Conference which is held in Florida, USA. After the interview round, I received a phone call from one of the partner’s to let me know that I had won the trip, and would be representing EY Perth at the 2018 Conference. It was an amazing experience to network with and EY leaders from across the globe.
Could someone with a different background do your job?
Yes. In the advisory, everyone has different backgrounds and experience - in my graduate cohort, we have team members who studied Economics, Cyber, Psychology, Finance, IT, HR, Law, Software Engineering and Mechanical Engineering just to name a few! I think the most important skills in this role are to be team-focused, willing to learn, and innovative – these sound like really cliché traits, but they are the most important things in my role, especially as a junior member of the team. If there are some additional learning and knowledge needed for your role, EY supports further study!
What's the coolest thing about your job?
I love getting to work across different industries – when I was studying I didn’t know what industry I wanted to end up in, so it’s great for me to get experience across a range. I also really enjoy seeing work that I’ve done being presented to a client, it’s a pretty fulfilling moment.
There are a lot of other perks to my job too. For example, in my first client engagement, I got to do some cool travelling around Western Australia. I worked out of Esperance, Kalgoorlie, Broome and Kununurra which was amazing. My graduate cohort are also fantastic!
What are the limitations of your job?
Understanding a client’s processes is crucial to the work that we do, so we are constantly having to pick up new things quickly. There are always more experienced people there to help, but you do have to take responsibility in your understanding of every client engagement, which requires patience and a few extra hours of work every so often.
3 pieces of advice for yourself when you were a student...
- Find yourself a good career mentor, not only is it great networking experience but it’s important to have a mentor to help you achieve your work goals.
- Hobbies are important! In my experience employers not only want to know about your academic grades, but also your passions and experience in life. And when you start work, your hobbies will help keep you balanced.
- Be bold, don’t be afraid to take every opportunity you get or to apply for things that you think are out of your reach.