Other than being the month of summer (supposedly), July is the month of throwing black caps and happy students who are of course delighted to have finished that 50,000-word dissertation – yes, GRADUATION.
Among them this month is our very own graduate Sophie Tinney, who was awarded an Upper Second Class degree in Finance, Investment and Risk at Glasgow Caledonian University. Huge well done to Sophie, we are delighted for her!
There seems no better time to introduce her as she already begins her second month with us at Murphy Wealth. We caught up with Sophie after she enjoyed some well-deserved celebrations.
What made you consider the Independent Financial Adviser (IFA) career path?
I have been quite fortunate with regards to the opportunities I have been exposed to since leaving school. I left school to work in customer service for Royal Bank of Scotland. After two years working full time, that was when I decided to go to college and study accountancy. Whilst studying, I spent two of my final summers working as an Accounts Assistant for a Chartered Accounting firm, Campbell Stewart MacLennan & Co, back home on the Isle of Skye. This was before continuing my final year at university. During my 4th year of university I was fortunate to gain a part-time position as an Investment Assistant at Save & Invest Financial Planning. Alongside the modules studied within my degree course, this led me onto the IFA path.
Sophie on her Graduation Day at Glasgow Caledonian University
There are many financial advisory firms, why did you choose Murphy Wealth?
Personally, I find it incredibly important to find an employer that shares the same values as you. Murphy Wealth has a strong reputation of being ‘people focussed’ which is something I have always looked for in an employer.
What was the process of applying for the graduate programme?
The staff at university were good at keeping us up to date with opportunities within the industry, and Murphy Wealth have a strong link with GCU. I kept an eye out for a vacancy throughout 4th year, and as soon as my lecturer emailed out details of a Murphy Wealth graduate vacancy, I started planning my application. It was an extremely smooth process. I was required to write out a 500-word essay detailing my path leading up to completing my degree and why I would be suited to Murphy Wealth. After the first stage, I was invited for a face-to-face interview with Operations Director Fiona and shortly after, I was offered the job!
Sophie with Operations Director Fiona Frew
Did you know about Murphy Wealth before?
It’s no secret that Murphy Wealth has a strong reputation as an employer, that it treats its staff extremely well and has a great working environment (not to mention cool office!). So when I was talking amongst friends both within and out with university, Murphy Wealth’s name was familiar and cropped up several times.
What sort of things have you been doing since you started?
I have been learning on the job by taking on the administrator role – a role that is key in supporting the financial advisors and client managers in the business. We recently had a team strategy session and I was involved in planning and building ideas with the wider team. That has born several new projects which I will also be driving with other team members. It’s an exciting time to be part of the business since we are growing rapidly, and it is a young and dynamic team. We are encouraged to be brave and innovative, which is often hard to come by in a financial advisory firm.
What are you hoping to get out of your experience here?
I hope to get exposure to different areas of the business. I am aware that no day is the same within an IFA, and that paraplanners and advisers are constantly facing new challenges. Therefore, I would like to gain as much experience as possible across multiple aspects of the business to give me a rounded set of skills. The next step in my professional development is to obtain my Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) Level 4 Diploma in Financial Advice.
What would you recommend to students also considering a graduate opportunity in IFA/Murphy Wealth?
I would say, try and get as much experience as you can. Learning doesn’t stop after finishing university, it is important to show your interest in financial advisory and that you are looking to build on this after graduating. Everyone knows that as a student, jobs can be hard to come by, therefore the best way is to be proactive. Volunteering could also be an option. Finally, don’t lose sight of what you are taught in university. It might be hard to believe when you are a student, but Degree courses are designed to help lead you into a career path. What you are being taught is important and will serve you well in the industry, especially when you pair it with practice.
In our intern Kimberley’s recently article, University Programme Lead Dr Patrick Ring shared that “GCU’s relationship with Murphy Wealth has brought an added dimension to students’ understanding of the world of personal and corporate finance. Through guest lectures, internships, skills-based competitions, and working with the students’ Risk and Finance Society, Murphy Wealth has enabled students to appreciate the career opportunities that the wealth management sector has to offer, and has contributed to the skills development of literally hundreds of BA(Hons) Finance, Investment and Risk graduates over the past few years.”
At Murphy Wealth we are passionate about investing in the talent of the future. We are delighted to welcome Sophie onto our official Graduate Programme – an initiative we hope to continue developing with even more students in the future. If you would like to find out more about work experience, internships or graduate opportunities, get in touch!