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George Tatnell

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George Tatnell

Managing Consultant - Finance

I match Auditors, Accountants and Corporate Finance professionals with large accountancy practices and boutique firms. I work with candidates at all levels from Trainee to Partner in the London area.

I have a large portfolio of clients of which I have a strong relationship with. My portfolio is a mixture of firms from the top 10, top 20, top 50, top 100 and strong, boutique firms outside of the top 100.

Coming from a finance, marketing and sales background – without knowing it, I perfectly shaped myself for a career in recruitment and this is why I have progressed at a fast pace. I worked for a large back-office administration firm within Financial Services, working alongside many internal accountants and having a hand in FS related duties myself – I feel I had a good base of knowledge to bring to the table and I naturally drifted towards finance recruitment. 

Outside of work, I read quite a lot; hit the gym like a beast and I watch films and TV but only if it scores above 7 on IMBD. I also play a lot of chess!

george's latest roles

  • Audit Manager w/ Progression to RI St...

    £55000 - £70000 per annum

    My client is a top 100 accountancy practice with a unique twist to their operation. Sitting at 10 Partners and 8 Directors with 100 staff spread across to offices, this firm is growing rapidly and has client...

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  • Audit Supervisor - Renewable Energy -...

    £48000 - £55000 per annum + Bonus, Pension, Free Cinema & Theatre

    Audit Supervisor - Renewable Energy Working for one of the best mid-tier firms in London city! My client is actively looking for a bright, aspiring Audit Supervisor / Assistant Manager to join and continue t...

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  • Senior Accountant - North West London...

    £35000 - £50000 per annum + Pension, Bonus, Flexitime, PHI

    Are you ACA/ACCA qualified? Are you currently working within practice? Looking to work in the North West London area? My client is an independent boutique practice dealing with a broad range of sectors and s...

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What people say about George

My experience with George was amazing and he is very professional as he kept me informed all the way through the process. He prepared me for interview very good and gave me key tips which helped me secure this role. He was very helpful throughout my search process.

George has been very good throughout out the recruitment process. He understood my situation and the role I was looking for as well as support and preparation for the interview process. I am happy with my new role and place of work.

George we first met when you made the effort to visit me at home following an operation and this typified an exemplary attitude. Throughout the process of securing my latest role you have always been helpful and offered sound advice in terms of potential roles.

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Companies George has worked with

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Jeffreys Henry is an award winning, top 100 firm with offices based in Old Street. Working with some of the UK’s most prolific entrepreneurs, Michelin-starred restaurants, AIM listing clients and large organisations from within the creative sectors

Gerald Edelman is a top 70 accountancy practice with offices based in Essex, Central London and North London. Established for 70 years, they have 16 Partners spread across the three offices and deal with clients from a wide mixture of sectors.

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george's articles

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10 Things You Didn't Know About: Ben Hooper, Head of Outsourcing at ABG

Posted by George Tatnell

Ben Hooper, Head of Outsourcing and Financial Accounting at Arram Berlyn Gardner has gained extensive experience in the UK providing professional services to a wide range of clients. Ben spent 4 years working in the Cayman Islands with a Big 4 firm with a particular focus on the Captive Insurance industry. He now specialises in supporting UK and international businesses with their internal accounting and finance matters. What three traits define you? I take pride in being reliable – inside and outside of work. I’m collaborative; I like working in a team and don’t believe its good to try and do everything yourself. Most of the time I think I’m patient – but maybe just not when I’m driving! What’s the weirdest job you’ve ever had? I had a weekend job in a garden centre when I was a teenager; watering plants, sweeping up and helping people carry bags to their car. Not exactly a springboard to a career in accountancy but it was fun. How do you define success? I think it's important that you can take pride in your work and enjoy it at the same time. If you can go home at the end of the day saying those two things you are doing pretty well. What would you do (for a career) if you weren’t doing this? I would love to have gone to chef school – so maybe I’d have my own restaurant. Nothing too fancy though! What is your personal philosophy? Never think you know it all. Always be open to learning or experiencing something new. How do you start your day? Always with a coffee. I really enjoy my 20-minute walk to the office from the station in the mornings too. What’s your favourite thing about working for your current company? It’s a very friendly firm and, while we all work hard, there is a more relaxed atmosphere than many places I’ve worked before. There are lots of opportunities to get together socially which helps maintain that. What are the secrets to good leadership? For me, it's about creating space for your team to get outside of their comfort zone while always feeling the support is there. You are only as strong as the people around you so it's crucial to keep them developing. What makes your company unique? I know its a cliché but it’s the people. Right now we have some very talented staff coming through the ranks and it will be exciting to see how we’ll develop as a firm over the next five years. Who do you most admire in your industry? Right now I am hugely impressed with the pace of change in cloud accounting and the software companies that are driving this development. They have completely changed the game. It’s a fantastic time to be in Outsourced Accounting as there are constantly new ways emerging to differentiate yourself as a provider and improve both service quality and efficiency. For more information about this article, or to speak to George about your recruiting needs or Finance jobs in London or Nationwide, contact him on 02072696318 or george.tatnell@pro-finance.co.uk

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Outsourcing in Practice – Bridging the GAAP

Posted by George Tatnell

If you have been keeping an eye on the market, you have probably seen the ever-growing outsourcing divisions developing across the Top 100. From a recruiter’s perspective, I have seen individuals from an accounting and business development background setting up outsourcing divisions and then looking to grow at a rapid rate. Why are accountancy practices increasingly looking to outsourcing departments? Well, it is down to the fact that organisations benefit a great deal from the use of outsourcing departments, it makes them far more efficient, supports business decisions, reduces costs and ultimately, allows them to become far more competitive. A Broader Market An outsourcing department will typically house a range of functions for their clients to utilise and can include everything from company secretarial to compliance and business advisory services to payroll. Thanks to the broad spectrum of services covered, outsourcing divisions are producing exceptional, well-rounded candidates, even in the larger, more niche organisations. Exposure to Clients Outsourcing divisions seem to be renowned for providing exposure to client management much quicker, with everyone spread across so many functions and with the extensive client interaction required. In summary, you will become well-rounded, you will better your interpersonal skills, you will learn to manage portfolios and you will be able to advise business to a much greater extent. Bridging the Gap to Industry I have heard many a story of an Outsourcing Senior or an Outsourcing Manager moving to an internal role with one of their clients – this often stems from an ‘Interim FC’ secondment offered to them or simply a great relationship built over years of service. Many of our clients in practice are aware this can happen, and that outsourcing helps candidates bridge the gap to industry, however, many divisions are now shaped to be fluid and adapt to his natural progression. Outsourcing bridges the gap to industry but not only this, as outsourcing covers the wider spectrum of services and small firms are known for creating great generalists, the big firms are looking for people with small or Mid-tier experience. It’s a huge game changer in the world of accountancy! The response to outsourcing by accountancy firms and the way the market has swung towards this service line shows what huge potential lies in this area of practice. It is a fantastic demonstration of the accountancy world taking a modern outlook in what is considered a stereotypically traditional world. Given the growth of some of the divisions we have been working with, many are already planning on succession, giving managers goals to become Partners and Seniors goals to become Managers. You may find you join a Mid-tier practice with the aims of going into industry or a Big 4 firm but then find you progress rapidly, love the environment and decide to stay put for the long run! The important thing is that you open doors in all directions. So, if you are working as an Accountant and want to fast-track your progression, open doors in all avenues and probably earn more doing so – I recommend checking out a few Outsourcing teams. For more information about this article, or to speak to George about your recruiting needs or Finance jobs in London or Nationwide, contact him on 02072696318 or george.tatnell@pro-finance.co.uk

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The Pro-Group Christmas Quiz 2018

Posted by George Tatnell

On Tuesday 4th December, Pro-Recruitment held its infamous annual Christmas Quiz, and what a night it was. With the best and brightest from across the worlds of HR, Tax, Finance and Legal, 26 teams went head to head for the much-coveted title of Pro-Recruitment Christmas Quiz Champions 2018. The competitive streak in some of the teams was evident from the outset and with company rivalries and reputation at stake, the night promised to be a hotly contested one. With Directors Pat and Ali compèring, the first three rounds flew by. Who knew the USA won the boomerang throwing championships in 12 out of the first 13 years when it was introduced in 1981? The picture round proved to be a point of contention for many teams and “Ohh that’s what’s his face” and “I know her but I just don’t know her name” were heard up and down the room. With the first half of the quiz out of the way, it was time for some well-deserved food. Whilst the room was happily munching away and assessing their individual performances the scores were being totted up by our expert markers. Scores at halftime showed that it had been a very tight half, with a mere three points separating the top five teams. With the food cleared away, the quiz was underway again with everything to play for. The Science, Christmas and What Comes Next rounds really put the teams to the test and threw out some curveballs such as, Who played the character Lee Christmas in The Expendables series of action films? The final (and most popular) Music round was undoubtedly one of the highlights of the quiz. We had Director Alison rapping the lyrics of the hit song In My Feelings, Drake eat your heart out is all we can say! We found out that Paul McCartney’s middle name is actually... Paul, go figure. To top it off we had the whole room singing along to the Lighthouse family trying to figure out the next line. The quiz concluded with the revealing of the answers to the picture round, Elon Musk makes a very convincing Santa. Pat was responsible for the big reveal and coming in a very respectable third were PWC’s We Are The Quiz Wells hot on the heels of Elman Wall’s Penny Patrol in second. The undisputed champions of the Pro-Group’s Christmas Quiz 2018 were Kingston Smith’s We Count Ants who now have bragging rights going into 2019’s quiz. Thank you to everyone who came and participated, we hope you all had a fantastic evening. Special thanks to all the staff at Pro who worked so hard to make the event such a success. We all look forward to seeing you again in 2019. To find out about upcoming Pro-Recruitment events or to speak to George about your recruiting needs contact him on 02072696318 or george.tatnell@pro-finance.co.uk

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Didn’t get the ACA results you wanted, what’s next?

Posted by George Tatnell

So, you didn’t quite get the ACA results you were looking for – what do you need to do now? Well, if you are working for a firm with a strict exam policy and you expect your contract will be terminated, try not to worry as you do have plenty of options! Many top firms have been known to try and work around the policy for exemplary employees; there are several ways they do this: Offer to keep you on without study support Offer to keep you on but switching to the ACCA Offer you another chance but without support for the resit(s) I must say, this is very rare in my experience and it’s likely you could be on the lookout for a new role. A common misconception is that you will easily jump from a top 10 firm to another firm within the top 40, unfortunately, most of the firms within this bracket do hold similar policies. If they take you on, they will be massively contradicting the termination of many other contracts for previous employees – it just doesn’t work! At this point, you need to re-evaluate where you are heading with your career because there are many paths before you that are probably hidden. Heading to Industry So, you have left a pure audit role within one of the largest brands in accountancy. This is the main key to industry because you now have the large brand on your CV to get you in the door. The very best thing you can do at this point is move to a mid-tier or small firm, where you can pick up varied experience rather than just auditing a tiny part of a huge organisation. This is a very good place to be for you! Running a Practice If the practice life is your choice long term and you want to either become a Partner or start your own firm, realistically, it’s unlikely to be Partner at the Big 4 for 99.9% of auditors/ accountants. Your best path to Partnership is again moving to a mid-tier firm or a small firm and becoming more rounded. Smaller client experience is essential when you are going out to pitch to work with smaller clients! I have advised candidates who have left Deloitte to start their own practice, Deloitte is impressive but as a small independent retailer, what can you do for me? You haven’t prepared a set of accounts before? Become varied. Big 4 or nothing at all!? Many candidates simply say to me that their dream is to work for the Big 4… Well, if that is genuinely the case, your dreams are not hindered by working for a mid-tier firm or better yet, a specialist boutique! Smaller firms are usually more progressive, if you move up quickly and specialise in a niche area – you still have a great chance of moving to the Big 4 providing the clients are sizeable and you have IFRS experience under your belt. Even if you go into a heavy accounts position, we are regularly moving strong accounts candidates from the mid-tier into top 10 and Big 4 outsourcing divisions. Corporate Finance or Advisory Great news for those wanting this kind of experience, the mid-tier is the best ticket in! Firms with Corporate Finance divisions at this level can provide you with experience on an ad-hoc basis and shape you for a move into a boutique or a large division in a top firm, as opposed to waiting for years internally for a move that may never happen! It’s the best possible outcome for you! YOU JUST WANT TO QUALIFY! Not decided what you want yet but want to qualify in a supportive environment – well good news! I have clients who shape study support to your preferences, let you postpone exams when needed and make it their mission to get you qualified. They do not treat you as a statistic that could be walking out of the door. We can get you qualified! In Summary Take a breath – some of the best candidates/ Partners/ Finance Directors I have met or worked with have had fails on the ACA, it’s an incredibly tough qualification and when you are leading a listed audit out in Basingstoke whilst sitting your finals – it’s a pretty tough gig! Your career is not over, it’s only beginning and it’s time to go and get that experience you need to get anyway! If you would like to have an informal chat about what to do next or discuss Semi-Senior vacancies, I am always available to help and I can be reached on 020 7269 6318.

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How we add value to your job search within Accountancy

Posted by George Tatnell

It’s good to see the innovation within our industry currently creating even more methods of helping you get in front of the right people and presented in the right way. I often find I am speaking with candidates who do not quite understand how we add value fully and I thought it may be beneficial for us to give you some background on our work. Relationships and Network Our specialist agency has been running for over ten years, growing alongside our database and client base. We know our clients very well, especially after meeting with them regularly and really getting to know them on every level possible. Your direct application may not get past an online portal directly, with us, it could land on the relevant Partner’s desk with our recommendations. Within just one conversation, our expert consultants who spend every day learning about such clients will be able to give you a snapshot each firm and help narrow down the ideal move. We will give you an insight into a firms’ progression, culture, their clients, benefits, remuneration and much more. On top of this, our experience allows us to map out your career plan from the starting point to where you want to end up. Time-Saving Let’s face it, audit doesn’t provide the greatest work-life balance. You are going to struggle to dissect the job market, study every option available (firm and role), interview with pretty much every firm (to learn more about them!) and weigh everything up accordingly. On top of this, you need to prepare for interviews and speak to others in the market to make sure you know what level of salary your position commands. As mentioned previously, a brief chat with one of our consultants can provide you with a conclusive list of options worth following up with. We map out commutes, match your CV with job specs, we know what type of personalities match with different cultures and we can send you tons of visit notes and extra information that will really help you figure out where suits you best. Moreover, your CV itself will be formatted by us – following on from an extended fact find over the phone. When suitable, we tailor your CV to the path you choose, and we will write it from scratch should this suit you better. Preparation We will help you fully prepare for any interviews/ processes, we know our clients well and we know what you will need to expect. A lot of the time, we predict the most likely questions (based on previous processes/ interactions), we provide useful documentation on how to answer such questions effectively, we will meet you in person to conduct mock interviews and we will ensure you feel confident before walking into an interview room. Negotiation Acting as a broker for you, we know where to push and where to hold off. We know what the market rate is for all levels and we know if you are under or overvalued at your current organisation. Thanks to our relationships, we can gently highlight when an offer is too low and give factual information as to why – helping to secure you the right number. This is something you simply cannot do as a candidate. What’s New? Marketing wise, recruitment is changing! We are now producing videos documenting roles, companies and candidates. Social media is becoming an important tool in the industry and our consultants are ready to take the bull by the horns and certify that you are presented in the correct manner and you find the ideal opportunity.

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Falling into my career as a Finance Recruitment Consultant

Posted by George Tatnell

In 2016, I was working in a bank; bored, unmotivated and unsure of where I was going with my life. I decided finding a role in the city would be the best thing for me and I was interviewing with several other financial institutes when I was invited to an assessment day at Pro-Group where I must have applied for by mistake! This was an assessment to join the Associate Consultant program here at Pro-Finance. I had no intention of finding a sales focused role and thought I would be terrible at it! After succeeding in my application, I fell in love with the company and industry and smashed it out of the park. Fast-forward to today, I am now Managing Consultant here at Pro-Finance, after achieving four promotions, and still progressing in my role. I broke the company record of quickest promotion from Associate Consultant to where I am now, and this was all due to the support provided and determination to succeed. Last year ended with me in the top 3 out of our 60 consultants last year. I was nominated as best newcomer of the year in the coveted Institute of Recruitment Professional awards and celebrated all of this success by earning a place at Pro-Group's annual spring break ski trip in what's been voted the worlds best ski chalet in Les Gets. Naturally, I've earned far more than I could have imagined and have loved the incredible journey I accidentally fell on to. If you are hungry to make something of yourself, with some self-motivation and a good work ethic, you can succeed in this incredible role and do far more than you can probably imagine. Not to mention, this 360-degree position will train you in marketing, sales, branding, pitching, presenting, advertising, negotiating and many more skills to mention. All of which are needed to succeed in almost every profession, a best-selling author is just an author without the sales support behind it. If the above makes sense to you please contact Loren von Sternberg to discuss your move into recruitment at loren@pro-recruitment.co.uk or call 020 7269 6358

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Accountancy and Artificial Intelligence

Posted by George Tatnell

Are you currently working within the audit function of a practice? Concerned about the recent advances in technology that could lead to artificial intelligence being responsible for compliance work? Recently I have been meeting with several Partners to discuss the implications of advances in technology and how they see the future of accountancy developing. Many leading firms already have specialist AI departments in which they focus on developing technology that can replicate the same audit and compliance work but can do it even faster and without error. I know this may be terrifying to hear but do not panic! As always, times are changing but the end is not here! You will be able to adapt, and you will be able to grow from this opportunity. My clients are searching for experienced auditors and accountants that will be able to make the inevitable transition to consultancy/ advisory work while exposure to this type of experience will only push you towards progression to Partner level and becoming a more rounded individual. So, what can you do to get ahead of the curve? How do you set yourself up for a speedy transition? You act now! Be proactive. I’ll keep things simple, here’s a list of what you should be doing: - Opting for projects/ secondments relating to advisory or consultancy-based work - Start looking at the bigger picture; start asking why and how rather than just doing - Increasing the value, you add to your clients and exploring methods to do so - If you know the area you want to work in, move now or work towards it - If you want to specialise in a certain sector, do so ASAP - Make sure the Partners are aware of your intentions, have conversations about the future and where you want to be - If you aren’t in a firm that can give you the needed exposure, do not wait until it’s too late, move! I hope the above helps get things straight in your mind, if you want to have a quick chat about the direction of the market and what you can do, please do not hesitate to call me on 020 7269 6318.

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Interview Preparation for Auditors

Posted by George Tatnell

Whether you have a 1st class degree in Mathematics from Oxford and ACA 1st time passes or not… You need to prepare for your interviews. Too many times have I worked with candidates who genuinely believe they do not need any help from a recruitment consultant in order to prepare for their interviews and I can’t lie, despite the obvious loss on my side when they come across too arrogant or unenthusiastic and get rejected – I feel they deserve the knockback. If you are serious about finding and securing the best role for you, you need to commit to the processes you chose to apply for. So let’s talk due diligence and mentally preparing for your interview, what should you be doing? Here is a basic outline of what I think is best: · Researching the company – reading everything there is available on the company! Not just read one line of the about us page. You want to read the mission statement, about the sector specialisms, check for awards, news articles, previous mergers and acquisitions, the company LinkedIn profile, the glass door profile and reviews. · Who you are meeting. This is essential, your questions at the end of the interview are key to getting enthusiasm across and a personal buy-in from your interviewers. Showing you have done your research and being able to ask personal questions creates a personal interest for example; “I noticed you moved across from Top Firm & Co three years back, what attracted you to this particular firm?” · The role itself. Make sure you have read the job spec carefully, you want to match your CV with the spec as best as possible and also note down any questions you have with regards to the role. You do not want any nasty surprises to creep up on you and find out you are wasting everyone’s time. · CV based questions. You want your reasons for leaving each role to be fluid, no hesitations and everything to make complete sense. Never bring any negatives into an interview so please, do not tell them how much you hate your old boss for twenty minutes. · Competency based questions. Strengths, weaknesses, difficult clients, difficult colleagues… You want as many questions to already be answered in your mind so when someone says to you, what is the largest client you have worked with – you don’t say “ERRRRR… I’m not sure…. ERRRRR”. You want to come straight back at them with a structured answer, with specific details of actions you personally took and the results that followed. · Your questions. You must get a couple of questions across regarding the role and the firm to get your enthusiasm across and I strongly suggest, you engage with your interviewer/s with a personal question. · Book a mock interview with your consultant! After all of this preparation; that’s when you are ready for your mock interview. Once you have finished your mock interview, you want to take all of that back home and revisit your preparation to brush up your answers. Another key thing to do is ensure you give yourself some time to fully relax the day before and ALWAYS call your recruitment consultant the second you leave the interview. If you give the wrong answer to a question but call the consultant immediately, he/she may be able to call the relevant Partner immediately to explain the nerves may have crept in and rushed an answer you know was incorrect – giving them the opportunity to overlook it. The moral of the story is, trust your consultant to help you prepare and never think you are beyond preparation. No matter what level you are; preparation is always important.

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