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A day in the life of…
Finance and Business Analyst Graduate at WA Department of Health
Calum Abbott studied a Master of Professional Accounting at Edith Cowan University, and is now a Finance and Business Analyst Graduate at WA Department of Health.
My alarm goes off and I get out of bed ready to start the day. I like to get up earlier than required so I don’t need to rush. I take a shower, iron my shirt and have some cereal for breakfast. Once I am all ready to leave I usually have 15 minutes or so to sit down and read the news on my phone.
The commute between my home and the office takes just 20 minutes and I arrive in time to find a free parking spot which is a 10-minute stroll to the office.
I have a quick chat with my colleagues as I head to my desk to start the working day at 8:30.
I check my emails, review my schedule for the day on Outlook and scribble out a quick to do list in my notepad.
My supervisor arrives and we have a quick chat about how my project is going, and he updates me on some of the tasks that he is working on.
I prepare for a meeting where I will present the strategic plan to my Director who is also the project sponsor. I ensure that I have a clear agenda printed out and I have a list of the key questions that I need to ask. I am working within the Budget Strategy Unit and my project involves analysing existing contracts to determine the likelihood of them being extended, and preparing five years of forward estimates.
The meeting goes well, and my Director confirms that the strategic plan is in line with the overall strategy of the team. We discuss the progress to date and the best way to go about the next steps efficiently. Once I get back to my desk I type up the results of the meeting so I have a record of what was discussed.
I am pleased to find an email with two excel spreadsheets containing data from a colleague in the contracts team. The files contain information that is of great help in the progress of my project. Using pivot tables I create a dashboard of charts summarizing the contract data.
Next up I have a catch up with Rosie the Grad Program Coordinator. We go for a walking meeting along the river, which provides a welcome break from the office. Rosie asks me how everything is going with my placement and answers any questions I have. We discuss what opportunities are likely to be available for the next placements, and also the various professional development events that the grads can get involved with.
I quickly eat my lunch at my desk so I have time to go and play soccer for an hour. Some of the employees from all different divisions set up a soccer field in the park across the road. My team fight hard but unfortunately go down to a 2-0 loss. It is a good opportunity to meet some other members of staff who work in different areas, and it’s a great way to stay in shape. I grab a quick shower then head back up to the office.
Next up is the weekly team meeting where everybody shares what they have been working on, and we discuss the key tasks that need to be completed for the coming week. My role in the meeting is to give an update on the progress of my project and to draw from my colleague’s expertise and experience to streamline the process. I try to absorb as much information as I can when discussions of other projects are taking place.
For the final run of the day I am totally focused on analysing the contract data related to my project. I am particularly interested in how many of the contracts are able to be allocated to cost centres. I send off some emails to colleagues in other divisions requesting some more information.
At 5 my working day comes to an end and I make the short drive home. I am greeted by my wife and 18-month-old daughter. We share a dinner together, then I have a couple of hours to play with my daughter before bath time and bed.
With the little one sound asleep, I use my final energy of the day to study for my CA tax module. I have an online assessment coming up so I have a lot of material to cover. I manage around half an hour of study before my motivation disappears. Luckily as a Grad I can take a generous amount of study leave to ensure we pass the exams.
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