Name: Billy Edwards

Office: City

Joined Kingston Smith: September 2009

Following my studies at Havering Sixth Form College taking A-levels in Accountancy, Business Studies and Dance, I chose not to go to university.

I chose a career in accounting as I felt it was a respected and interesting job. No two days are the same, ensuring that you are challenged and motivated. I always had a knack with numbers which attracted me to the profession,  surprisingly for me I discovered that the being an accountant is not as number driven as many believe, there is a lot of law involved and report writing!

I chose Kingston Smith as it is a large firm with a small firm feel. You gain all of the experience of a large accountancy firm, whilst being nurtured on a one to one basis in the same way as a small firm. Kingston Smith is one of very few firms where you work on audits, accountant preparations and corporate tax, rather than having to specialise in just one area for your entire career. The promotion prospects at Kingston Smith are great, you are pushed to strive for your goals and continue to progress.

When I first left college I initially thought that not having a degree would make it more difficult to find a job in the career I wanted as an accountant, but through determination I joined the Kingston Smith AAT Training Scheme. This not only gave me the opportunity to earn while I learn, but I also had the benefits of no student loans to repay and I got onto the career ladder a lot younger than those who went to university and I was still doing the same job as them!

The recruitment process when I joined Kingston Smith was very friendly and inviting, which made me more determined to join the firm. The induction process was brilliant and could not have made me feel more welcome, it really eased my nerves, especially considering this was the first significant job that I had ever had.

In the short term, my aim is to be promoted to manager within the next 12 months. My long term goal is to eventually become a partner at Kingston Smith; I would hope to achieve this in the next ten years. Kingston Smith has a clear career path which is very motivational and pushes you to be the best you can be. Kingston Smith has always encouraged me to strive for my aspirations and have always been there with support when it is required.

I would highly recommend the AAT training scheme for anyone who is not going to university. The AAT training scheme is very rewarding and Kingston Smith are always there to help you progress and improve as an accountant, which you do not get at many accountancy firms.

I could not have joined a better firm! The training is second to none and each employee is treated as an individual rather than a number. The social life is brilliant, there are always events taking place and the social committee are always looking for new and exciting ideas for events. To earn a significant salary whilst studying is a great benefit.

In my spare time I enjoy, keeping fit at the gym, partaking in and teaching dance classes and socialising with friends.