PwC's Victoria: 'The School Leaver programme gave me the confidence I needed to lead'

  • - Written by the team at PwC

    Victoria was one of our first School and College Leavers to join our Operate programme in 2016 and is now a senior associate within Operational Risk and the Compliance Testing team. She’s successfully completed her CFAB qualification and as a testament to her own personal development, she now supports those who join through the same route as they complete their own qualifications. 

    “One of my proudest career achievements has been achieving my CFAB qualification. Initially that transition between college and full time work and study is difficult, there’s a lot to balance especially if you’re not mentally prepared for it. Having achieved my certification I give guidance to those joining our team and also advice on juggling client work and study time too.”

    Our School and College Leaver programmes are a great entry route into PwC, providing you with the opportunity to start your career right away, learning directly from your peers and working with clients from day one. We’ll help you grow your confidence and give you the tools to be able to learn with new technologies to help you day-to-day.
    We don’t look for previous experience, and we recognise that everyone who joins us will have different skill sets they can contribute to our teams. It’s one of the reasons our School and College Leavers feel so supported and encouraged to succeed.

    “When I joined our Operate team I was a little nervous to start with as I had no work experience which I felt would prepare me for this new career. Imposter Syndrome did kick in and I wondered if I was old enough or experienced enough to be having conversations with clients or even the Managers in my team.

    But I was encouraged by everyone in my team to be involved with all discussions and importantly that my opinion and thoughts were welcomed. Over time I grew more comfortable with the responsibility I had which also really helped me personally too.”

    Everyone who joins PwC, regardless of their entry route, is welcomed by a buddy, often someone who is a few years ahead in their career. Victoria has been a buddy to many of her colleagues, and has seen her team grow exponentially over the last few years. When she joined she was one of 10 people, and now the Operate team number over 200. 

    She’d describe her career so far as challenging, insightful and rewarding.
    “I was treated as an equal from day one and not as a ‘school leaver’. It was one of my worries, that I might not have sight of some of the more interesting complex projects we’d work on, but that couldn’t have been further from the truth. There’s no labels at PwC, and importantly, when I was ready for responsibility I was given it.

    One of the perks of joining on our School Leaver programmes is that you earn a salary from day one. For Victoria that’s allowed her to travel to far flung places and look forward to new adventures every year. She’s also recently bought her first house, a tremendous achievement and something she’s very proud of. 

    Outside of work she’s admitted that all her money does go on travel or food; “I love going out for brunch or dinner with my friends, and having that luxury is something I work hard for. I’ve got a trip to New Zealand planned for next year which I am really looking forward to.”

    Personal development is something close to Victoria, having been one of the first to join our Operate programme and now leading the way for others, and that’s been helped by the various internal training programmes she’s chosen to take advantage of.

    From digital upskilling and technical training, to training on soft skills such as leadership and negotiating, our Vantage training platform allows everyone the opportunity to take ownership of their own learning and development and upskill themselves. 

    We often ask our people which PwC value resonates with them the most, and for Victoria it’s care.

    “I feel incredibly grateful to work with people who genuinely care about my development and team wellbeing. The care aspect cascades to the community as well which PwC plays a big part in; I’ve started monthly volunteering with a local charity to deliver meals and I’m thankful for the opportunity. PwC gives everyone six volunteering days every year to use which means I can take these days knowing I’m supported by my team to do so.”

    With so many opportunities to join our Operate team there’s an opportunity for everyone, regardless of experience and qualifications. To find out more about our Operate programmes, click here.

    To read more about our application process and entry requirements, click here.

Share this story