I was born and raised in Sydney, Australia. I studied at the University of New South Wales and during my time there engaged with different societies and completed various courses and internships to figure out which career paths to pursue. University for me was a place to identify what I enjoyed doing, as well as setting goals and aspirations for the future. In my final term of university, I studied abroad at the University of Virginia. This global immersion allowed me to travel, meet and interact with people from all around the world, as well as complete my degrees on a high note.
From submitting my resume to attending KPMG Launchpad, the recruitment process was streamlined and easy to navigate. After submitting my resume and academic transcript, the next stage involved an online logical test. These were essentially games assessing my decision-making capabilities under time pressure. Following the psychometric testing was an online interview. Questions were structured around my knowledge of KPMG and its values, as well as my goals and aspirations.
The next stage was KPMG Launchpad, an interactive day where I heard from KPMG board members and interacted with fellow peers. The day included a case study and an interview. The case study provided me an opportunity to showcase my critical thinking and interaction with my fellow applicants. The Launchpad interview was run by two senior members who posed behavioural questions focused on my skills and experience. They were approachable and had no difficulty in answering my questions.
The whole process is an opportunity for KPMG and me to learn about one another, and whether there was an alignment between our values and goals.
I’m in the Global Transfer Pricing Services team in the Sydney office. Our work focuses on strategizing and implementing international transfer pricing policies and analysing and documenting inter-company arrangements for our clients.
Having only been with KPMG for six months, I have worked on a variety of projects and deliverables with various multinational corporations. A normal day involves responding to client enquiries, interacting with people from other KPMG teams, conducting industry specific research and assessing company financial statements. Other duties include organising client meetings, conducting functional interviews and ensuring adequate risk engagement policies are in place.
A project I have enjoyed is a piece of advisory work I recently completed, which focused on determining a feasible interest rate range for refinancing a client’s international long-term loan in a post-COVID-19 market. It involved sourcing and analysing relevant comparable data based on the loan terms for both Australian and US markets and preparing a report to document our analysis and recommendations.
KPMG has structured training programs that all graduates participate in, as well as business-specific training. I have participated in learning workshops to develop my hard-technical skills and capabilities, as well as development programs to further improve both my business knowledge and soft skills. Further, KPMG is supporting my goal of attaining post-graduate qualifications.
Other than working with talented and dynamic individuals, the large size of our team allows me to work under various management styles and develop my critical thinking in line with any given manager. Further, the team’s and KPMG’s flat organisational structure has me working side-by-side with directors and partners, in which my contributions shape the outcomes of our deliverables.
COVID-19 has resulted in a sudden change in the working behaviours and patterns of global businesses. Collaboration now occurs in a virtual capacity and work commutes are less than a minute. The rapid shift to remote working has resulted in me formulating a new set of skills and work mindset.
I spent a month and a half in the office before being advised to transfer my workspace to my bedroom desk. The early days of remote working saw my team come together over morning video calls in which trivia and other games were played, as well as friendly check-ins to see how we were adapting to working from home (WFH). Partners facilitated open floor discussions to ensure no-one was facing work or technical difficulties, or other hardships during this time. If I had to coin a catchphrase during this period, it would be “Let me know when you can see my screen?”.
In the second half of 2020, the Sydney KPMG office re-opened several floors to allow access to workstations and in-person collaboration (albeit limited). This has allowed employees to choose a WFH-Office mix that addresses their work obligations and personal circumstances.
A word to the wise