Real Life Career Stories: Lindsey Tyler, Head of Audit at Azets UK
Lindsey Tyler is Azets UK’s Head of Audit. Her role focuses on developing and implementing the Azets UK Audit growth strategy. It is very much a commercial role and involves working alongside Azets UK Head of Regulatory Compliance, Carol Warburton and Head of Audit Quality & Technical, David Smith. Lindsey’s remit is to embed operational excellence and align regional plans to deliver growth, quality, efficiency, and effectiveness throughout the UK Audit service line. Here Lindsey talks about her interest in audit, her career journey and the purpose of this exciting role.
What inspired you to pursue a career in Audit?
My audit career has spanned over 17 years and I have always really loved what I have done. I trained with KPMG and spent 13 wonderful years there where I made many connections and embraced the challenges of continued learning and meeting a huge variety of interesting clients. To me, having a role where I am continually visiting different clients, in a wide range of industries, really gets me up in the morning. I like challenging myself technically but also on a wider level with project management, developing people and getting involved in CSR initiatives.
What does Audit mean for Azets in the UK?
Azets has a substantial Audit and Assurance business in the UK – with over 5,000 audit opinions signed and 1,000 colleagues. We are market leaders in the OMB audit market and award winners in the not-for-profit space.
The audit landscape is challenging and changing – but this brings a lot of opportunity! With our huge wealth of experience and excellent people, we have been and will continue to drive growth in audit. This leads to more exciting work for everyone, plus additional opportunities to collaborate with other services and colleagues.
What are your ambitions and ideas for the long-term vision of Audit in the UK?
The successful implementation of our ambitions will be focused on our great people. I’m working with my colleagues to bring to fruition the emerging national training strategy for our audit teams to ensure that we are delivering the highest quality audits in the most efficient and consistent way. Alongside this, we will be implementing a more formal coaching and mentoring program so our upcoming auditors can get tailored career development. We strive to be the employer of choice for audit professionals – whilst maintaining a high quality, efficient and commercial audit approach.
I am extremely passionate about the audit business and know that, with our great people, we can continue to drive growth in the £20m - £100m turnover space and continue to provide high quality audits for our clients.
What trends are you excited to see develop in the Audit space?
There has been unprecedented change in the world over recent years. Alongside this we have seen a lot of challenge in the audit market, particularly around some high-profile corporate failures, and as a result, increased scrutiny and discussion on audit quality. The question arises on whether the increased calls for expansion of the scope of audit would lead to disproportionate burden on small or medium sized enterprises (SMEs). This is something that the professional is continually debating. At Azets we pride ourselves providing high quality audits to our SME clients. We are constantly challenging ourselves on quality to and operational excellence.
Further and alongside the focus on quality, the future of the profession relies on innovative approaches. Over the past few years we have introduced a more data led approach into our audits nationally. The pace of technological change is rapid, and it is key that auditors and regulators continue to explore and implement innovative ways of auditing. There is already significant advancement in data analytics tools including Robotic Process Automation (RPA) and Artificial Intelligence (AI) approaches.
Finally, I have already mentioned that people are at the centre of our audit business. During the past 2 years, the way that all of us work has changed significantly, with people continuing to work remotely and take many meetings virtually. It is important for me that my teams are empowered to work flexibly and do what is right for them.
What advice would you give someone looking to start a career in Audit?
One key piece of advice I would give someone looking to start a career in Audit is ‘to be a sponge’! You have to soak up every new thing you learn, and you need to be able to grasp complex problems and ideas quickly. The balance of learning at work and self-studying means that the learning is varied. Audit is such a great foundation to a career in business.
My training contract years were so memorable, I met a lot of amazing people and had a lot of fun too!
What is the work culture like in the Audit team?
I work with such a fantastic team! We work hard to give value to our clients but we also look out for and support each other on a professional and personal level.
It’s been amazing to watch the support as we went into lockdown and great to see teams come together as we get back into offices again.
What benefits do you get whilst working at Azets?
First and foremost working with great people and clients, and every day is different. The work is challenging and rewarding. I’m a Mum of two and work four days a week. Azets encourages flexible working, which makes a huge positive difference to my work-life balance, allowing me to adjust my working hours to meet the needs of our clients, the business and myself.
Why did you choose to apply to Azets?
I wanted to move to an all-service firm to be able to draw upon experiences of other service lines. I really enjoy working with other experts to collaborate and problem solve client issues.
Interested in what a career at Azets could look like for you? Take your audit career to the next level and explore their current audit opportunities here.
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