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Should I move to practice from industry?

Should I move to practice from industry?

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I have been made redundant from my industry role, Ive been working in industry for whole career, about 5-6 years but have been offered a job in an accountancy practice, money same as industry roles and seems good overall so tempted to take it, but what do i need to watch out for?

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By thestudyman
10th Aug 2020 23:21

What job are you doing in industry and the potential new job in practice? I would have thought you would be starting at the bottom with a pay cut with no practice experience.

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By excelmonkey
11th Aug 2020 08:02

I have been working as a Management Accountant for 30k for the last few years, I'm newly qualified and the practice would pay about 5k more, they also handle some outsourcing from what I understand so my management accounting experience is more relevant.

I would be going in as a supervisor managing about 3 trainees

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By Mr_awol
10th Aug 2020 23:32

They both have different rewards and very different types of pressure.

In practice the pay starts off lower, can go quite a bit higher (but usually doesn’t for most) and you are constantly under pressure having to account for every minute of your day, justify your tome spent, etc.

In industry the middle level pay, and benefits, tend to be better and you are constantly under pressure trying to work out either what to do with the remaining three days a week, or how to stretch your job out so it looks like you are busy all five days.

If you’ve currently got no job, why not give it a crack and see how you like it/get on

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By excelmonkey
11th Aug 2020 08:13

Yes thats what I've heard regarding pay, although at the moment for me practice is offering slightly more, I have been on 30k and its offering 35k. Although it might make a difference that I am out in the shires

I've always found it funny that management accounting is supposed to be so laid back, although i get some of that is banter from practice accountants. Because everywhere I have worked has been incredibly busy.

I'm thinking I will go for it, but I have also been offered some more management accounting roles for similar money so it is coming down to location, size of business etc which the practice is better for

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By tom123
11th Aug 2020 10:07

I think the laid back thing is just a comment sent in 'from afar'.

Never experienced 'laid back' anywhere I have worked.

Conversely, I always think it must be nice to pop in once a year to review someone elses work without the worry of what the numbers represent 'in the real world'.

:)

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Hallerud at Easter
By DJKL
11th Aug 2020 12:13

Having recently been working in both practice and industry I would mention that about 95% of what I did in practice I did on auto pilot- very little real thinking involved/required, whereas industry is still decision making/problem solving from morning until night- what industry at the SME level can do is take you miles outwith your comfort zone into totally uncharted waters and you need to wing it without having passed an exam in the subject.

Yesterday I was reviewing the sub letting provisions within a poorly worded lease, earlier today I was looking at telecoms mast legislation and discussing seagulls with someone from the Council, I spent part of the weekend looking at a cheap 0.44 acre site that seems landlocked re development and considering the art of the possible unlocking it; I am not an ornithologist au fait with nesting patterns, a solicitor, an architect or a town planner, merely an accountant in industry who knows a little about a lot- practice is a doddle compared with actually running/driving a company and requiring to have a view/ take decisions about absolutely everything.

You've never had it so good.

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By tom123
11th Aug 2020 08:06

Bird in the hand and all that..

If it were just a 'blue sky' thing, then I wouldn't (and I am in industry) - but, in this climate, for more money, I wouldn't spend long worrying -

Good luck

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Replying to tom123:
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By excelmonkey
11th Aug 2020 08:19

thanks, I am thinking if going for it, thing is I have some industry offers also, but leaning towards practice

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By excelmonkey
11th Aug 2020 08:19

thanks, I am thinking if going for it, thing is I have some industry offers also, but leaning towards practice

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By Ben McLintock
11th Aug 2020 09:46

Give it a try, but there's a good chance you'll ultimately prefer industry.

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By RaxJ
12th Aug 2020 11:04

I would give it a go in practice and expand your variety in accounting this way. Have a view of looking to gain a PC and starting your own practice in future.

Industry is naff. Who on earth wants to be seen as an overhead that doesn't make money for the business!! On top of that, you have inexperienced accountants sitting in higher roles like finance manager or financial controller completely out of their depth and looking to pass the buck all the time!!!

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Hallerud at Easter
By DJKL
12th Aug 2020 13:01

And you also have FTSE 100 MDs who used to be FDs- as I said above, an FD in an SME can get to do a lot more than play with their abacus- for today's task I need to get to grips with the new rules under Covid re debt recovery, irritancy and tenants entering into a CVA where we as landlords are not one of the voting parties- all interesting stuff.

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By RaxJ
12th Aug 2020 15:23

Very interesting, but you're still an overhead and not directly linked to making money for the business. The perception of finance in industry is not great I'm afraid.

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Hallerud at Easter
By DJKL
12th Aug 2020 15:37

How do you work that out, negotiating contracts somehow does not directly impact profits?

An FD can be doing everything, from throw in his/her ten pence worth re how to make a property transaction more profitable/improve its cashflow to deciding which bad debts to chase and which to let lie. (Cost/benefit)

Both decisions directly lead to the bottom line, drafting leases/licences can directly lead to the bottom line.

I just three weeks ago killed some litigation raised against us on a building contract by looking into the detail . The litigant tried to sue us in name of a company which in the interval had ceased to exist, it now looks like we may even get costs awarded against the law firm who acted for the non existent company (How did they satisfy MLR?), an FD in an SME is not merely a money person, they tend to get involved with everything and these decisions impact the bottom line.

You ought to get into the SME sector, say circa £20m-£30m assets, where an FD maybe only spends 30% of his/her time on the numbers and the other 70% of time actually running the business.

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Pile of Stones
By Beach Accountancy
18th Aug 2020 09:34

I've worked in industry but now have my own practice. There is a lot of repetition of work in both areas. In practice you know a little about a lot of clients where in industry you know a lot about just one. Ultimately it depends what you enjoy doing - in industry I had a lovely complicated forecasting spreadsheet that calculated detailed p&l, balance sheet, cash flow, etc for 5 years. In practice clients don't look beyond next year. You will engage with a lot more people in practice whereas in industry you are mainly reporting to your line manager.

At least now I never have to go attend another company presentation or go on a team building away day.

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