Working for SSJ – George’s Interview

In this interview we introduce you to George, who started his career with a Society of St James accounts apprenticeship in 2019 before leaving to pursue a role as a trainee accountant in September 2023. We discuss George’s experience as an apprentice, his personal growth, and the invaluable insights he acquired during his time at SSJ.

George’s Journey

George’s story with SSJ started in April 2019 at the age of 22, when he applied for a Finance Apprentice role despite having no prior background in accounting or finance.

From the outset, George assumed a range of responsibilities, initially working on base level transactional tasks. Alongside his studies, George relied upon his mentor and Financial Account Manager Philip Nuttall to understand more about the application of the analytical skills he was learning to a real-life setting, and to grasp the bigger picture of SSJ’s financial landscape.

George’s dedication to learning propelled him beyond the confines of his role, and the support from his colleagues at SSJ was instrumental in shaping his personal and professional growth. After four years of hard work, he made the role his own, managing SSJ’s primary bank account, overseeing expenses, and handling petty cash, among other important business tasks.

George’s apprenticeship included a study day at Eastleigh College each week, which culminated in him achieving the Level 4 AAT qualification, the final level of the AAT qualification which teaches more complex accounting theory.  Having completed Level 4 and his apprenticeship, George is now leaving SSJ so that he can go on to study for the ACCA and become a chartered certified accountant. 

Looking to the Future

From reserved and somewhat shy beginnings, George blossomed into a confident individual equipped with an extensive understanding of accounting processes, and the role of accounts in a busy charitable organisation. When asked about his favourite aspect of the job, George responded, “The most fulfilling part is that I get to see where every single penny goes. Amid the negative portrayal charities sometimes receive, where people suspect funds aren’t directed where they should be, working within SSJ’s finance department has allowed me to witness every donation in action. It restores your faith in the power of charities. This is undoubtedly the highlight of my role.”

When we asked George about his experience of SSJ, he responded, “It has been absolutely fantastic to have the opportunity to work here. Every day brings something new; the pace is invigorating, and there’s always something to be getting on with. SSJ has provided an environment in which I have been able to thrive, and that’s what I love about it.  My colleagues have been incredibly supportive too – I really appreciate all the help, support, and guidance they have given me during my apprenticeship.”

A Fond Farewell and Best Wishes

During his time at SSJ, George has become a well-liked and highly valued member of the SSJ team, with George’s mentor and Financial Account Manager Philip Nuttall commenting: “George’s loyalty has been nothing short of exceptional. When he joined us, he lacked self-assurance and experience. Today, he stands as a remarkably confident and capable individual. Any employer would be fortunate to have him. While we wish he could stay, our priority is to aid his career journey. We wish him the very best of luck in what will undoubtedly be a very bright and successful future.”

Everyone at SSJ would like to extend our best wishes to George in all his future pursuits, recognising his path as a source of inspiration for others. George, thank you for being an integral part of the SSJ family and leaving a lasting impression on us all!

Are You Looking for a Meaningful and Rewarding Career?

Do you want to make a positive difference in the world? If so, you might be interested in joining our charity. We have a variety of job roles available, from junior through to managerial roles in both back office and frontline support. Working for our charity will give you the opportunity to use your skills and talents for a good cause. You will also enjoy a supportive and friendly work environment, flexible hours, and benefits. Don’t miss this chance to be part of our amazing team. Apply today and start your journey with us!