Risk Consulting Graduate Trainee (Internal Audit - Public and Social Sectors) - September 2023
Overview of the Advisory & Consulting service line
The Advisory & Consulting Service Line is a rapidly growing, award winning, global group of successful teams working together to present a go-to-market differentiator whilst delivering the highest quality of work for our clients.
If you are successful in securing a role on our training programme you will join a team of 600+ innovative specialists across a variety of sectors including Financial Services, Industry & Services, and Public Services with consultative expertise in Risk & Management Consulting, Internal Audit, Actuarial and all aspects of the Tech & Digital space. Our Advisory teams are at the forefront of large international infrastructure projects, global M&A transactions, high-profile forensic investigations, business valuations, corporate restructuring and creditor advisory services; all with the aim of adding value to clients by finding solutions to a range of financial issues as one collaborative team.
An introduction to our Public and Social Sector Risk Consulting team
Our team offers internal audit, advisory and other assurance services across multiple organisations within the public & social sector. We provide our clients with clarity over the performance of their risk management processes and raise recommendations for improvement where required. Working in the public and social sector will enable you to meet and support like-minded individuals at your clients who really want to make a difference in society. You can directly contribute to supporting local communities and be involved with some of the biggest issues in society at the moment.
Public and social sector organisations are extremely important, unique and interesting. At Mazars, we work with a wide variety of organisations across the range of sub-sectors set out later in this section. As we act independently to our clients, we play an important role in supporting public scrutiny, helping to hold organisations to account, support continual improvement and striving to make society a better place.
You will have the opportunity to work across a wide range of clients within the public and social sector Risk Consulting team. Our team provide distinctive audit and advisory services across the following six sectors:
- Local government - We are among the top 4 firms providing internal, IT and contract audits as well as anti-fraud and corruption services to local government. The Apex Framework, delivered by Croydon Council and Mazars, provides local authorities with internal audit resources with over 40 local authorities and companies adopting the framework.
- Education – Education organisations we work with include universities, sixth form colleges, academies and schools. As part of the work we do, we complete specialist funding audits, data return and legislative reviews for our education clients, as well as wider audits around the student experience, apprenticeships, safeguarding and governance, to name a few.
- Central government – We work with a range of Arm's Length Bodies (ALBs) of government, who deliver and manage public services, provide advice to government and develop regulation. ALBs therefore include organisations with very specific objectives, such as museums and galleries, research institutions and regulators. Internal audits that have been completed by Mazars trainees include managing collections of artworks, assessing the retail operations of gift shops, looking at grassroots sports funding across the UK, ensuring generators are held to account for managing sustainable fuel, assessing the diversity and inclusion aims of regulators and reviewing the arrangements for inspecting railways to help prevent/investigate accidents;
- Housing - Housing in general, and social housing in particular, is of significant focus within the UK. Mazars is the #1 provider of Internal Audit services to the social housing sector, operating across both England and Wales. We audit key risk areas such as fire safety, income collection and anti-social behaviour, providing consulting and assurance services to almost 100 clients;
- Police - We provide a range of internal audits to the Office of Police & Crime Commissioners and the associated Police Force. These organisations face various challenges and are very much in the political and media spotlight for the way in which they operate. Our work adds value to the organisations by providing assurance over key areas such as corporate services areas including Finance and HR to more operational areas such as Victim Services, Firearms Licensing and Seized Property.
- Charities - We provide internal audit and advisory services to a range of household name charities working across fields such as international conservation, care in the community and medical research funding. It's a fascinating sector and offers you the opportunity to work with people with strong altruistic values and to feel as though you are really making a difference. There is also some unique audit work in this area that you don't see elsewhere such as reviewing fundraising strategies and practices, raffles and lotteries, and volunteer management.
The role of a Public & Social Sector Risk Consulting Graduate Trainee is to conduct internal audit reviews of our clients' operations in specific areas. You will be responsible for undertaking internal audits into individual areas of the client's business, providing recommendations that are proportionate and in line with public sector best practice.You will undertake all aspects of the internal audit from opening meeting to report writing/audit closure. The audits that you will undertake will be varied and diverse and will have a direct meaningful impact on our clients and the communities they serve. You will help them to shape their internal processes, reduce their exposure to risk and highlight the opportunities facing them.
We are now operating a hybrid working model, so as a trainee you will split your time between working from home, visiting the office, client sites when required or studying for your professional exams.
During your first year you will:
- Perform internal audits by testing and reviewing documentation to establish a client's exposure to risk and the effectiveness of the processes in place to mitigate risks;
- Obtain relevant information from clients whilst building an effective rapport with client staff;
- Undertake internal audit testing using a range of tools and methods in order to review and provide recommendations on the client's business operations;
- Develop a thorough understanding of the nature of the client's business, best practice, and applicable regulations;
- Take ownership for an internal audit project within the first two months, including providing feedback to clients verbally and through written internal audit reports; and
- Develop personal and professional skills through regular training, with the support of your team and your line manager.
During your second year you will:
- Start to be involved in supporting client managers in the planning stages of work, such as attending scoping meetings and drafting internal audit Terms of Reference documents;
- Start to specialise in particular sub-sectors or types of audits where you have developed an interest;
- Increase your confidence in providing your own solutions and ideas to complex client scenarios;
- Perform more challenging technical audits under the guidance of the relevant Mazars manager;
- Gain proficiency in report writing, and begin to review the work of more junior team members; and
- Be able to aid junior team members by providing support and feedback.
In your third year you will:
- Be able to complete complex audit reviews with minimal supervision from Mazars managers;
- Act as a point of contact for both internal Mazars management, junior members of the team, and clients, ensuring that the internal audit work of others is completed within required timeframes;
- Begin managing the operational delivery of client internal audit plans, including taking ownership for scoping meetings with clients to develop internal audit Terms of Reference documents;
- Develop client portfolio and contract management skills, that will put you on a pathway to the Assistant Manager grade;
- Gain exposure to Board-level client meetings, shadow managers who will be responsible for presenting our reports; and
- Provide on the job advice, training, and supervision of junior staff, with the opportunity to take on Line Manager responsibilities.
- Interpersonal skills; the ability to build client relationships with a foundation of trust and responsibility.
- Communication skills: the ability to articulate your ideas and suggestions clearly and effectively in both verbal and written forms.
- Analytical skills; attention to detail, the ability to think critically, research and solve problems.
- Interpreting skills: interpreting information, drawing conclusions and making judgements.
- Proactive approach: you will need to ensure team members/managers are updated about the status of projects in your portfolio and that any client issues are escalated promptly.
- Project management: strong time-management and project management skills (you will need to prioritise your portfolio of tasks). A desire for autonomy and to take personal ownership for the delivery of projects to time and quality.
- Flexibility: ability and motivation to work both independently and as part of a team.
- Enthusiasm for the sector: motivated to work specifically within the public and social sector (across our not-for-profit client base) and driven to make a difference for the organisations you will work with.
- Personal and professional development: commitment and motivation to self-development and learning.
- Affinity with our values: in particular, respect for individuals, diversity and integrity.
Strong academic performance is important; however, we understand that things don't always go to plan. Our recruitment process looks at your whole self – academic achievements as well as other experiences in which you have grown and developed. We balance your academic results alongside the aptitude assessment within our recruitment process to ensure that you will be successful in your role with us.
We will fund your study towards the CFAB qualification (the first six modules of the ACA qualification). You will then be given the opportunity to continue your ACA or switch to the IRM qualification (working towards the International Certificate in Enterprise Risk Management and then the International Diploma in Risk Management).
You will receive a full study package to support you to successfully complete your professional qualification. This includes time off to study, attend college and complete online courses. Your professional qualification is only part of the story at Mazars; we support all of our trainees with a blended approach to training and development including classroom study, 1:1 coaching, and soft skills training.
You will be supported by an appraising manager to keep your career and aspirations on track. You will also be allocated a buddy, who will support you to settle into the team and navigate your first year at Mazars.
- Annual Leave +
- Charitable Giving
- Dental Insurance
- Wellbeing Benefits
- Virtual GP
- Cycle to Work
- Gym Discounts
- Life Assurance
- Flexible Benefits +
If you are interested in a career in professional services, we can offer you an exciting head start by joining one of our trainee schemes for school or college leavers.