My return to AAB

Back in August 1997, fresh from university, I joined AAB as a CA trainee. This was my first step into the world of full-time working whilst continuing my professional development with ICAS. During my initial time at AAB I gained…

AAB Life Blog

Blog1st Jul 2022

Back in August 1997, fresh from university, I joined AAB as a CA trainee. This was my first step into the world of full-time working whilst continuing my professional development with ICAS. During my initial time at AAB I gained my CA qualification and progressed to become an audit senior. I spent seven years at AAB and gained a wide spectrum of experience in auditing and accounting services. I also undertook secondments and was involved in the inception of the outsourcing division which was a really great learning experience.

Fast-forward 17 years and I rejoined AAB in May 2021 within their Virtual Finance Function (VFF). You may be wondering why I returned? After spending 17 years in various roles, mainly within oil service businesses delivering high quality and timely profit and loss reporting, managing annual budget processes and managing cash flow forecasting, I realised it was time for a change.

In February 2021 I received a message from a fellow AAB alumnus, Andrea Masson, asking if I was interested in a new role as they were recruiting within the VFF team. Andrea had returned to AAB several years earlier when she joined the VFF team in its infancy. I was very keen to learn more about the innovative VFF offering and felt I was a perfect fit for the team thanks to my knowledge of AAB and the experience I had gained in finance management over the years. All the deliverables I had been providing for the last 17 years are ones we provide to VFF clients. So, I sent my CV to Andrea, had a call with Lauren McIlroy, the Partner who leads the VFF team, was offered the position, and three months later I was back with the AAB team!

The past year I’ve had the chance to work with a variety of clients, from charities to clients in the energy sector and financial services – and this variety is continuing as we expand our team and client base. It is very rewarding to see the difference we are making to our clients and their businesses as our expert team can manage any aspect of their finance function that they need support with. Within VFF we can benefit our clients in many ways – we offer real time visibility of the financial position of their business, we free up management time that would have been spent on finance so they can focus on the business, we potentially reduce overheads as VFF is an alternative to recruiting an entire finance team, and we provide access to financial specialists. Tech plays a big part in VFF as cloud accounting allows us to be “virtual” and there are many apps that can be used to streamline processes and create efficiencies for clients.

Although AAB has grown considerably over the years, there are still many of the team who were here in the early noughties, and it is great to be back and see so many familiar faces. Returning to the firm has given me the chance to catch up with colleagues and reminisce about jobs we worked on all those years ago. Of course, many things have changed; not least the fact that the AAB group now has offices in various locations – Edinburgh, Glasgow, London, Leeds, Ireland – which will provide the opportunity for further growth within VFF and the firm as a whole. The hybrid working model that AAB supports suits me well as it enables me to balance my career with family life. I really enjoy my time in our modern Aberdeen office at Prime Four as it is always a pleasure to see your colleagues in person.

In conclusion, it’s great to be back at AAB, especially at such an exciting time for the Group, working in the VFF team where I can offer a bespoke virtual accounting service to such a diverse and interesting range of clients.

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