We hear from two graduates, Erika Strelbicka and Lydia Iremonger, who have both taken their first steps into a corporate finance career with BZ.
Erika Strelbicka, who holds a bachelor’s degree in Financial Management, explains her journey so far: “I spent two years studying Financial Management in Denmark and completed my degree in the UK. When the opportunity to join BZ arose, I was very keen to find out more. Asset-based lending was completely new to me and speaking with the team opened my eyes as to its versatility and the value that it brings to businesses.”
Erika said: “At my final interview, they offered me a rotation role, which enabled me to see every aspect of the business and understand where my skills would be best suited. When I spent time in the Treasury department, it felt like it was meant for me.”
Not just a number
“While my role involves working with numbers, I certainly don’t feel like a number at BZ. Everyone has been so welcoming and it’s exciting to be working in a relatively new team. I have recently been promoted to a new role as Finance Administrator and that shows that there are clear pathways to growth for graduates joining the business. I feel so lucky that my first experience of working in financial services has been with BZ as it’s such a positive ‘family’ environment. I have never met so many knowledgeable people in one team. It’s a huge opportunity to have that experience passed onto you with the reassurance that everyone is 100% there for you. I’m now taking ACCA qualifications and they have been brilliant in allowing me the additional studying time required.”
Lydia Iremonger graduated last summer from University of Nottingham with a master’s degree in mathematics.
Lydia commented: “I always enjoyed maths and when I learnt it is one of the top ten most employable degrees, that always stuck in my mind. Most of my friends going into the workplace were looking at companies in the big four, which employ thousands of graduates a year. I very much prefer the idea of working in a smaller, fast-growing business that has such a close team spirit, where you have the chance to get to know everyone.”
Training and one-to-one mentoring
“I always think that people either make or break your experience of a company. Following my interview, I spent time in every department which gave me a valuable understanding from a whole business perspective and the specialised training and one-to-one mentoring has been fantastic. They also offer employees the flexibility to pick additional qualifications that will help them progress. I’m now a Credit Analyst and enjoy looking at new ways to analyse data to answer numerical questions and test specific models and scenarios. BZ is sector-agnostic, so we also get to learn about a variety of industries in-depth; knowledge that we can apply when working with future clients.”
Robert Wakeford, Managing Director, UK Sales, commented: “At BZ, we are building a business on strong foundations and continually investing in our people is an integral part of our ethos. Today, it’s more important than ever to retain talent and attract new employees.”
He concluded: “With training programmes drying up within the ABL sector, we’ve made a decision to bring new talent into the industry, as well as continually develop our current staff. We offer a stimulating and supportive environment where people get to work on complex and challenging deals, applying creativity and critical thinking. Our business is all about creating innovative solutions and that comes from embracing a diversity of ideas, so employing and nurturing people with a range of backgrounds, talents and experience is vital to our long-term growth.”