Name: Rob Scholes, 26
Degree: MA Hons in triple modern languages, St Andrews, 2:1, 2002
Occupation: Integrated and acquisition finance analyst, Bank of Scotland (part of HBOS)
What do you do in your job?
I work as a member of a team and we offer equity-funding packages, supporting management teams and equity houses. As an analyst, I have a variety of duties including financial modelling, credit reports and taking part in negotiations.
What was your motivation in applying?
I had a summer job working in a bank and I really liked it. I wanted to work for medium to large businesses which meant I decided to go into corporate banking. Bank of Scotland has an excellent reputation within the banking community and the graduate scheme was offering excellent on-the-job training. It seemed like a good start for someone like me who wasn’t from a finance background. I decided to stay in Scotland because I came up here for university and really enjoyed it, so it seemed like a natural step to work in Edinburgh. The bank itself is a dominant player in the Scottish market, even though London is still the financial centre of the UK.
What did the application process involve?
It was a three-stage process; an online application form, a telephone interview and an assessment centre, which gave me an opportunity to meet graduates that were currently on the scheme.
What do you enjoy about your job?
We deal with a whole range of different companies so I could be out seeing a manufacturing company one day and a retailer the next. It isn’t all work either and we get the opportunity to go out and network with people at dinners and golfing days, so it is a very sociable job. The bank will only get business if you have a good relationship with the client, so meeting people is a big part of the job.
Most challenging part of the job?
The time pressures are very challenging because we are working to finish deals. We interact with a whole range of companies so you have to almost be a specialist in every sector, tailoring the financial package to that business. This means getting down to the meat and bones of what that business does.
When work needs doing you have to put the hours in, which means sometimes working longer than you would like.
Advice to readers considering a career in your field:
Get some work experience, even if it is not exactly what you want to do, it can be very useful at interview. The key to getting a job is ensuring you prepare well for every stage of the process.