When and how did you decide to be an accountant/auditor? I decided to be an auditor when I was 14 years old when a group of accountants came to our school on career day and they spoke about being a Chartered Accountant.

How long have you been pursuing your career? Since at university in 1994 when I decided to do an accountancy degree and thereafter joined an accountancy firm to train as a Chartered Accountant

How long have you been an auditor at your most recent company? I have been with my current now for almost seven years.

What do you find the most rewarding about your job? Learning about the key processes and controls at an organisation and then identifying the key risks and associated controls that should be in place.

Is there anything significant that differentiates your role as a standard auditor to a Head of Audit? A standard auditor performs an audit of the business units through performing walkthroughs and tests of controls and then summarising the results and findings in a report.  The Head of Audit manages the team of auditors by identifying the audit activities that need to be performed and allocating audits to the teams based on the individual skills and capabilities of the team.

If you could change anything about your career, what would it be and why? There is absolutely nothing that I would change

What you say is your personal greatest challenge as an auditor? The personal greatest challenge is keeping abreast of all the regulatory and other changes impacting the financial services industry and making sure that the internal audit team has adequate skills and capabilities to perform effective audit in the midst of these changes, in addition to other corporate change initiatives that occur at the same time.

In your opinion, what are the greatest challenges that accountants/auditors face today? The technological and digital advances that are occurring including regulatory and economic, political and associated changes means that the auditors have to keep up to date with such developments in order to be effective auditors.

What has been your greatest success as an auditor? Identifying significant findings that either improve operations or save the company some money such as fraud in an audit.

Could you use three adjectives to describe yourself? Confident, hardworking and conscientious.

Which traits would you reckon are vital for a successful accountant? Attention to detail, good listening and interviewing skills, good understanding of the business being audited, relationship building ability and thoroughness.

Have you learnt any notable lessons from auditing? What are they? Yes, the most important lesson in auditing is to listen very carefully and always validate the results of the tests.

What or who inspires you? My inspiration comes from my mother who was a hardworking mother with 8 children that she raised to be independent professionals even though she did not have a career of her own.

Do you have a favourite memory during your accounting career? Yes, the best memory I have was discovering a fraud at a building society that was perpetrated through collusion between the Chief Financial Officer and the Chief Executive.

What words of advice would you give someone considering going into accounting? “Accounting is a profession that equips people with skills that are relevant in any business or industry, it does not matter which business it is but everyone wants to know if they have made a profit or loss and whether the business is in a good financial position, and this is what accountants do.  This skill is also relevant even when you become an entrepreneur, and even in charitable organisations there is a need to know the financial position in order to make decisions about the activities of that charity.”