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What is a finance career at Travis Perkins like?

29 Jan

The Travis Perkins finance team is friendly, hard working and always welcoming to new colleagues. Ayesha Amjad joined the business with four years’ finance experience in global firms and hasn’t looked back.She spoke to us about her experience of working at Travis Perkins:

Why did you join Travis Perkins?

I’d always worked at US or international companies before and an appealing factor about Travis Perkins was that it was local to me and close to home. I feel a great sense of pride working for a British company of this scale.

What are your colleagues like?

Everyone at Travis Perkins is so approachable and will go out of their way to help you with your work, and that’s not just limited to the Finance team. For example, when I’ve noticed people in other areas are highly skilled in particular programmes like Excel, I’ve never hesitated in asking them for help. Within the Northampton office where I’m based, I’m encouraged by my team to approach managers with thoughts and new ideas.

What skills have you gained?

I’ve learnt a lot since joining Travis Perkins. I attended a two-day external Google Script course which was a great learning experience. I was able to apply what I learnt to my work, improving our reports and use of automation in the business. I’ve also learnt SQL coding, which I’ve picked up from people working within finance and other parts of the business. These skills are like learning another language and can be used all over the world, not just at Travis Perkins, which is great for career development.

Working at Travis Perkins has improved my understanding beyond finance.The management team provide a targeted career development plan for each colleague that improves us as finance professionals as well as developing our interpersonal skills so that we can comfortably talk about finance with colleagues from across the business.

What’s been your proudest moment since joining the Group?

I’m most proud of seeing new colleagues with no finance experience thrive in our team. Travis Perkins develops employees through secondment schemes where they give opportunities to people from different backgrounds. It’s rare to find a company that would invest so much time training and developing colleagues that have a limited financial background. I take great pride when I see these colleagues go on to become finance analysts at the end of their secondments, they go from learning how to work on spread sheets to creating their own reports and even improving existing ones. I have been fortunate enough to help develop two finance analysts within our team.

What’s the hardest thing that you’ve done to date?

When I first started I had four years of experience working in finance and thought I was highly skilled at Excel. However, when I got to Travis Perkins I saw that everyone in the finance function worked to such a high standard, and a lot of my knowledge was quite basic compared to others. To keep up with everyone I had to really polish my skills in Excel, learn how to use Google dashboards and get to grips with new tools and techniques. It was a learning curve, but my colleagues were so helpful and never made me feel like a burden - it was simply a knowledge gap that we reduced together.

What have you learnt about yourself?

I have become so much more confident than I ever was which has come from interacting with different people every day. I’ve also learnt that my opinion matters. Colleagues can interact with (and challenge!) people at all levels and this makes me feel valued by my whole team.

If someone was thinking about joining Travis Perkins what would you say to them?

I would say that if they are looking for career progression it’s definitely the place to come. Travis Perkins are great at recognising talent and developing people. There are so many opportunities within the company and the potential to move to different parts of the group to try new roles. I speak with people all over the business, which has given me a good grasp of how the whole group operates, rather than just a narrow finance focus. As Travis Perkins is constantly progressing and there’s a lot of positive change that makes my role diverse and exciting - no two months are the same.

Finally, there’s the company culture. There’s an openness here I haven’t experienced in any other business, where senior management members, and even the CEO, are often walking around the office chatting with colleagues. It makes you feel valued and proud to work for Travis Perkins.

Interested in joining the team? Find your next finance job now.

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