Hi! I'm Laurence Sanders, a graduate on AXA's Finance programme. Currently on my second placement in London, I’m working as a Group Expense Analyst at AXA UK.
Before joining AXA in September 2014, I had originally studied History at university, before deciding to move into Accountancy. After looking at a number of graduate programmes, one thing that really stood out for me with AXA is that you have the chance to complete the ACA in a range of different business areas, and gain a more well-rounded experience in the long term.
I’m really enjoying the variety of the rotation scheme, and in my current placement in Group Financial Reporting I’ve been helping to prepare a presentation for AXA’s five-year strategic plan. While it’s less project-based than my previous rotation in tax, I get a real bird’s-eye-view of AXA in this role and the work is a good mix of detailed accounting and more strategic, high-level tasks. It’s also been really interesting to gain an insight into the similarities and differences between AXA’s operating companies and their business models.
Something else that stood out for me when looking to apply was the breadth of AXA within the UK, and the fact that there’s such a variety of sectors and jobs you can get involved in. Since joining I’ve found that there’s a real emphasis on individual responsibility here, and you’re given a lot to do upon joining. But at the same time it’s also quite a relaxed organisation and everyone is really friendly and supportive.
To anyone thinking of applying to the AXA Finance programme, I would say make sure you’re able to show a keen interest in finance and why you want to work for AXA, along with concrete examples of your experience and skills. And on the day just try to relax as much as you can and not stress too much. One thing I found at the assessment day was that no one is trying to purposely catch you out with any questions; everyone there genuinely just wants you to do the best you can.
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