A day in the life of a graduate | Chamath Gunathilake

By admin - May 15, 2018

Some of our graduates from across the firm share an insight into what to expect from our Graduate Program.

Chamath Gunathilake

Position: Graduate Accountant
Division: Business Advisory & Assurance
Firm: Sydney
Degree: Bachelor of Commerce (Accounting & Business Law); Bachelor of Economics
University: University of New South Wales

7.00am | Morning rush

My train ride to work begins, and I like to get in early so I can get a seat on the train and have my liquid breakfast shake (also known as Soylent). This week I am working on an ASX listed fund and today myself and my team are meeting the Portfolio Managers, so we can perform analytical procedures on their investment performance. 

8.30am | Catching up

After arriving at the client’s office, I check my email. Being able to multi-task and prioritise is an important skill you learn in Audit. So, I see if there are any urgent matters I need to attend to immediately.

9.00am | All about the prep

Prior to the meeting, I get a second opinion from my senior on the stocks I have selected to discuss and analyse with the client. I believe that asking questions and corroborating information is important in Audit, the seniors want you to have an inquisitive mindset and are always willing to answer questions and share their knowledge. I work on other aspects of the file while we wait for the client to become available.

9.30am | Meeting time

Prior to the share market opening, myself and the team sit down with the Portfolio Managers and attempt to corroborate our understanding of the fund performance and the underlying reason as to why the managers chose to buy/sell a certain security. The company’s Chairman, an Aussie investing legend, also pops in for a quick chat. One of the perks of working in Audit is that you get the opportunity to meet many interesting people who you would otherwise not normally interact with.

12.00pm | Value lunch

Myself and the team go downstairs to the cafe on the ground floor of the client’s building. It has the best value lunch deal in the whole of Sydney (at least in my opinion anyway), I get a healthy grilled fish fillet, salad and a not-so-healthy side of fries and a drink, all for $9.

1.00pm | Timesheet Friday

In Audit it is important to keep track of what you do throughout the day through your timesheet, as at times you may be working on more than one client, as well as wrapping up or answering queries from a previous client. I ensure my timesheet for the week is filled out and submitted so there isn’t a rush to do it the following Monday.

4.30pm | Final procedures

I work through the final sections of the audit file to which I have been allocated. I note that there is some information outstanding from the client and update the outstanding request list to reflect these outstanding items. The outstanding request list is something which we usually send out to the client on the final day of our field visit so they are aware of information that they still need to provide us in order to complete the engagement.

5.30pm | Time to call it a day

Today was a great learning experience, the opportunity to interact with clients is something I value because you get to see things from their perspective, which at times is vastly different from your own. I check my email one last time to ensure there aren’t any pressing matters that require my attention before the end of the week.

7.00pm | Dinner

I come home and have dinner. After dinner I study for around 30 minutes, revising content for CA. I find that revising content during the week in small blocks helps to retain the bulk of the study I do on weekends.

9.30pm | Chill time

I turn on the TV and note that the T20 Cricket is on, I watch bit of the game and call it a day.


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