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My experience: Ellen Fengz

After graduated from Bangor University with a degree in Accounting and Finance, I went to Durham University studied towards a master’s degree in Finance.

Ellen Fengz

Ellen Fengz Trainee Chartered Accountant

ICAEW route: Graduate

Industry: Financial Decisions and Analysis

Location: United Kingdom

Ellen Fengz

Tell us about your career journey and what you do day-to-day in your role?
After graduating from Bangor University with a degree in Accounting and Finance, I went to Durham University studied towards a master’s degree in Finance. After graduation, I wanted my first job to have a combination of some real-world experience dealing with clients and also have the opportunity to study toward a professional qualification. Hence, I joined Flemmings Chartered Accountants, a well-established firm of Chartered Accountants, Wealth Managers and Property Consultants. During the first two years of the graduate programme, I was with the Financial Planning team. My role involved quantitative analysing open market funds in the UK financial market, and also preparing for financial planning recommendation to High-Net-Worth Individuals based on their financial requirements. Since October 2020, I have joined the accounting and audit team. I have been responsible for preparation of statutory year-end financial accounts, corporation tax returns, monthly/ quarterly management accounts and VAT returns.
Why did you choose the ACA over other accounting qualifications?
ACA is a very practical qualification that covers not only accounting and audit but also taxation, finance and strategy business management. The exams are designed to reflect a real business environment. I am able to link the knowledge I gain from exams closely to my day to day work. ACA gives me a solid foundation of how businesses work from different aspects. In addition, ICAEW is an international accounting body and recognised worldwide. As I would like to pursue an international career, ACA enable me to open many doors in other countries.

Who or what inspired you to become a chartered accountant?
Alumni inspired me to become a chartered accountant. I joint several panel discussions and career events when alumni shared their career journeys with students. Many of them started their career from being a chartered accountant and mentioned that ACA gave them more career choices and opportunities.
Tell us how Oxfam helped shaped the accountant you are today?
My experience at Oxfam was mainly inputting and reviewing income returns of 750 shops in the UK, performing bank reconciliation on shop income account which gave me the very initial idea of bank reconciliation. I was also responsible for allocating donations to correct restricted appeals and making sure donations fulfil legal requirements for Gift Aid. The experience really developed my attention to detail and made me realised the importance of making small figures correct.
What advice would you give to aspiring accountants?
Lift to bigger picture thinking when challenges occur. Remind yourself everything will work out, even if it takes time and effort.