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How Did I Get Here? Jonathan Teller, Numerica

28th Jun 2005
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how did i get here jonathan teller

Continuing our How Did I Get Here? series, Jonathan Teller, talks about his career to date.

Current job title

Director in Vantis Numerica / Chairman of the IT Faculty of the ICAEW. Vantis Numerica is the product of the takeover by Vantis of Numerica Plc. Numerica was in turn an Aim quoted company that had integrated several practices including Levy Gee.

Describe your initial training within the profession

Foundation Course and then a four year training contract with Levy Gee.

What positions have you held?

All levels through to Finance and IT Partner.

What advice would you give to someone thinking of entering the profession?

Ensure you qualify.
It helps if you know what you want to do after qualification but it is not critical. Many don't have a particular direction. Specialise in an area that you enjoy.

Is there a significant event you can tell us about which had an impact on your career?

A series of events impacted my career.
The first was the arrival of PC's into the country just as I completed my Foundation Course. I was able to buy one of the original Commodore Pets which encouraged my burgeoning interest in computers.

By the time I qualified the spreadsheet had just appeared and was taking off as an invaluable finance tool and I helped develop the firms cashflow projection model and then the service based around it.

I was fortunate to be sponsored for a part time MBA at City University a few years after qualification providing me with a broader view of business and paving the way for a consultancy role.

Having chosen an accounting system in 1990 whilst finance partner I upgraded to a very new database (SQL based) version in 1994. Levy Gee was one of the first if not the first to use the new version and that generated a significant amount of publicity about the firms' extensive and innovative use of IT including coverage in the Financial Times.

What is your overall view of the finance industry and the people in it ?

No comment

Who most inspired you to get where you are today?

My Father, his father and his father.

My father is a sole practitioner which explains the interest in accountancy. Before I started training he suggested that I have an extra area of expertise. Hence I made my interest in computers part of my professional life.

My grandfather immigrated from Ukraine when he was 10 just before the First World War and subsequently completed two PhDs. The second, later in life, whilst running his own specialist school. He was a gentleman and his ex-pupils still tell me how much they liked him.

Our family legend has it that at the age of 11 my great grandfather was thrown out of class because he was cleverer than a fellow pupil whose father was paying for the teacher. He sat down to study by himself and seeing him crying, some of the older men in the town offered to help him with his studies. He qualified as a Rabbi and then as a rabbinical judge eventually taking up a position in London.

What has been your greatest achievement?

Professionally, it is probably the selection of an accounting system for the practice which is still in use 15 years later. In that time the practice grew to over ten times the size and changed shape a number of times including the move from partnership to plc and a change in year end. Latterly this included building and implementing a web based, distributed reporting facility allowing management to see up to date figures and drill down to the transaction level saving a great deal of finance department time spent handling basic queries.

Previous career profiles
All the previous career profiles can also be seen in the special How Did I Get Here? page.

Have you got any useful insights or cautionary tales that could provide useful pointers to aspiring accountants? If you would like to contribute to the 'How Did I Get Here' feature please email our employment correspondent: Dawn-Marie Dart

Career resources
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