Maximizing Your Potential: Growing from a student job to a career in Finance and Control
- Name: Loes de Vries
- Current occupation: Assistant Controller at Van Dorp installations
- Study: MSc Accountancy at Tilburg University
“To kick the interview off, could you briefly introduce yourself and share a bit about your work experience as a Finance Professional via FIT Finance & Control?”
My name is Loes de Vries and I am 23 years old. Currently, I am pursuing a master's degree in Accountancy with a Control track at Tilburg University. Prior to this, I completed a bachelor program in Finance and Control at Rotterdam University of Applied Sciences. In the gap year between my academic pursuits, I ventured into the professional world via FIT Finance and Control, an agency that provided me with diverse finance-related assignments to gain insights into different areas of Finance. My current occupation entails working as an Assistant Controller for Van Dorp Installations, where I work two days a week.
“Why did you choose to work with FIT Finance & Control, instead of directly applying to a company?”
At that point in my career, my primary objective was to gain practical work experience. While I had previously undertaken several internships, I remained undecided about the industry that would best suit my interests. I realized that by working through FIT Finance & Control, I would be able to explore different areas of finance and gain valuable office experience through a diverse range of assignments. Moreover, the prospect of participating in a training program featuring both hard and soft skills development strongly appealed to me. By coincidence, I was frequently assigned to work in the installation industry and discovered a previously unforeseen affinity for it. Although I do not possess technical expertise, my work has helped me develop a better understanding of situations that I encounter in daily life.
“You mentioned that the option to do various assignments is very beneficial to you. What kind of assignments have you done so far through FIT Finance & Control?
I commenced my career with a brief two-month project where I assisted in the clearing of an invoicing backlog. Afterward, I joined the invoicing department at Van Dorp Installation, where I was entrusted with managing financial transactions and administration. Through these roles, I acquired a foundational understanding of financial reporting and processes, which served as a springboard for my subsequent growth into the position of Assistant Controller. In this new position, I have taken additional responsibilities such as cost analysis and other financial analysis.
“How is it going? What do you like most about your job?”
I'm really enjoying it here. In particular, I like the opportunity to collaborate closely with my colleagues in a small team setting. Despite joining the company through another route, I received a warm welcome and was quickly made to feel like a valued member of the team. Furthermore, I appreciate the professional development opportunities that FIT Finance & Control offers me, which enable me to enhance my skills and advance in my role.
“How is the collaboration with FIT Finance and Control going?”
Personally, I place the utmost importance on flexible employment conditions. As a student, my schedule is subject to frequent changes, particularly during examination periods. Fortunately, FIT Finance & Control has always ensured me that this is perfectly fine and switching days, in consultation with the other employer, is no problem. In addition, I value a congenial work environment and a sense of community. FIT has fostered this by organizing trips and hosting monthly gatherings at their own bar. This offers me the opportunity to meet and socialize with other FIT Finance professionals in a relaxed setting. In my opinion, these types of events are illustrative of FIT Finance & Control’s appreciation of its employees.
“Could you share your aspirations for your post-graduation plans?”
After my studies, I have a strong desire to travel to Australia as I was unable to do so during my gap year. Beyond that, I am eager to expand my knowledge and explore various industries. I see FIT Finance and Control as an ideal way to achieve this goal, allowing me to identify the sector that resonated with me most.
“What advice would you give to other students who would like to have a career in Accountancy or Finance & Control?
My most important advice is to explore what you enjoy. Pursuing a master’s degree can provide a more in-depth understanding of the areas of your study that fascinate you. Additionally, taking on a part-time job, for instance through an agency like FIT Finance & Control, can assist in acquiring fundamental knowledge in the field and improve your position in the job market. It is also advisable to enhance your skill set by learning various competencies such as excel. For instance, I am keen on taking the ESG reporting training through FIT as sustainable reporting is becoming increasingly important in accounting. These proficiencies can be effectively applied in the practical settings and can certainly increase your job prospects.