Kyle Tumulty, KPMG Ireland
Kyle talks to gradireland about careers in accountancy and tells us about his experience in corporate accounts.
Tell us about your academic background.
I studied business economics at Queen’s University Belfast. I was lucky enough to achieve first class honours.
Why did you choose accountancy?
I had studied economics and thought I would pursue that. But I had attended a lot of inside evenings and Chartered Accountants Ireland’s events. I had done a placement year with KPMG and after all that experience and all that exposure, chartered accountancy really won me over.
Why Chartered Accountants Ireland?
I really wanted to align myself with an organisation that had a lot of structure and was built for people like me who were coming in with very little knowledge in accountancy and turning them into accountants. I was very impressed with how the course was structured and with the level of support I was given. They have a wealth of knowledge and are always there as a point of reference should you need guidance.
What are the advantages to working and studying?
It gave me the opportunity to work in a firm, develop a professional skillset and earn a little bit of money. I could study what I wanted to study and be in accountancy as well. It can be challenging to do both, but the firm gives you plenty of support, guidance and time off to study.
Describe a typical day for you.
I work in mergers and acquisitions which involves buying and selling value in companies for clients. I have worked on selling a portfolio of renewable assets such as wind turbines and hydropower stations. I have also had the opportunity to work on valuing such assets. In order to do this, I made use of the knowledge that I gained from my studies.
What pathways can graduates take in your profession?
There are two routes. The first is a training contract which is the more traditional route. This is where you apply after university and get a three or three-and-a-half-year contract working full time and studying part time.
The second is the flexible route where you begin your studies outside of a training contract. It’s a good way to get a head start on the study element. This might put you in a position to get a training contract the following year.
What are the most important skills within your profession?
Drive and determination. You need to be willing to take on the challenge, immerse yourself, accumulate knowledge and pass your exams.
Interpersonal skills are invaluable wherever you go. In accountancy there is a need for clarification, you need to be comfortable asking for a clearer explanation when you need it.
How long does it take to become fully qualified?
Typically, it takes three and a half years.
What advice would you give to students considering a career in this sector?
I studied completely different subjects for my A levels. If you’re interested in something, go for it.
After first year consider doing a summer internship or a placement. This would give you a good idea of whether accountancy and finance are for you.
What are the long-term career paths expected within your profession?
It’s limitless! You can work with the firm you’re in, you can work in the private sector as an accountant, you can work as an advisor, and you can even transition into starting your own business. There really is a wealth of options.
What are your goals for the future?
Going forward, I want to continue working in renewables. There is so much to learn, I want to accumulate that knowledge and work my way up that ladder.