I recently sat down with five of Insero’s first-year auditors to discuss their experiences during their first year in public accounting. Here’s what they had to say:
What about your first year in public accounting was surprising or different from what you expected?
Tommy Dangler: When I started with the firm, I was surprised at how many opportunities existed to get to know your coworkers. From our softball team to frequent firm outings, I was able to get to know my coworkers well very quickly, and I developed friendships just as fast.
Zac Jencik: I was surprised at how much of a community-feel Insero has to it. I thought that I would be working non-stop and under a lot of pressure. Once I started working, I realized that everyone understands that you are just a person, and that life exists outside of work
Katie Stinson: I expected busy season to be extremely stressful and everyone for themselves. However, everyone is super helpful and willing to help; you never feel alone. This made the season must less stressful than I expected.
Devin Green: I was surprised at how great the work environment is. Everyone here is amicable and helpful.
Gina Carpino: I was surprised at how much everyone here is willing to help you. People make time to answer your questions, no matter how busy they are, and they don’t make you feel like you’re intruding.
Are there any aspects of the job that took some time to get used to?
Katie: I was unfamiliar with some of the software used at work when starting. I was able to become familiar with them relatively quickly.
Gina: It took me some time to get used to talking to clients, especially in person. This was intimidating at first, but once I got used to it, I realized how nice all of our clients are and am now more comfortable around them.
Have you had support as you made the transition from student to full-time employee?
Zac: I had an internship the summer before my senior year of college. When I went back for senior year, Insero allowed me to keep working part-time, and was accommodating with my class schedule. I was able to finish school while still feeling connected to the firm, and it made my transition to the workforce a smooth one.
Devin: Transitioning from student to full-time was a challenge, however starting during busy season helped me to learn quickly and grow at the same time.
Tommy: Insero was very flexible with me when I was transitioning from student to full-time, they helped me plan how and when I wanted my transition to occur. This made it easier for me to enjoy my last year of college, without having to feel rushed into starting full-time.
Gina: The advisor program helped me transition from student to full-time. My advisor still checks in with me to make sure I am doing well. It is nice to know that you have someone who cares.
What stood out to you during your first year in public accounting?
Katie: It stood out to me how nice everyone is. Even when working directly with partners, they are super receptive to my questions, no matter how small. They make sure that I have a positive experience and are hands-on to help me get the work done.
Tommy: The managers and partners are here to help. They truly value your goals as a young professional and help you achieve these goals. They take their time to get to know you, and don’t just stand back.
Zac: The culture here is very supportive. Everyone understands that you aren’t just an accountant, but at the same time, everyone wants to help you grow as an accountant. You have options- if you aren’t happy with the department or engagement that you’re on, you have the ability to change these things. Your needs are heard and met here.
Gina: There is no hesitation to throw us challenges. These challenges help us grow and show that our management trusts us and believes that we can handle them. You also don’t ever have to deal with a challenge alone and can always ask questions for help.
Are there any specific programs or benefits you found helpful during your first year?
Zac: Insero values our work-life balance. I love the 3×3 holidays that we get once a month during the summer. It is really nice that everyone disconnects on the same day, so that way you aren’t worried about missing anything.
Devin: The block scheduling that we have been doing during Employee Benefit Plan season helps me stay congruent with management styles and keeps my workflow steadier.
Tommy: I really enjoy all the community service events that we do, especially during the holidays. This allows me to spend some quality time with my coworkers, as well as give back to the community.
Katie: The spot bonus program makes me feel recognized. It is nice when you feel like you went above and beyond, and that you are formally recognized for doing so.
If you were talking to a friend who was currently interviewing for their first accounting job, what are three things you’d want to tell them?
Katie: Be willing to make mistakes, you are not going to be perfect. If you think your question is silly, ask it anyway – it is better to know than to not! You need to be able to stay organized – it’s easy to forget things and lose track.
Tommy: Stay in constant communication with your reviewers, be willing to do extracurriculars and put yourself out there.
Zac: A large part of the job is communicating efficiently and respectfully – with both reviewers and clients. Always take notes. Watch out for phishing emails!
Gina: Take a step back if you’re overwhelmed, work on building relationships with your coworkers, and go to events as it’s important to get to know everyone. Communication at work is important as well.
Devin: Don’t be afraid to rely on your team and reach out when you need help.
To learn more about careers in public accounting at Insero, visit inserocpa.com/careers.