Lorraine Maguire talks to Crowe about her experience on the graduate programme

Empowering Ambitions Through Growth

Lorraine Maguire, an Assistant Manager in our Audit department, reveals how Crowe Ireland's graduate programme can unleash your professional potential and guide you on the path to career success.

Can you tell us a bit about your background?

I am currently an Audit Assistant Manager at Crowe, originally from Leitrim. I moved to Dublin in 2014 to complete my undergraduate degree in Accounting & Finance in Dublin City University. After my degree, I joined Crowe as a graduate in 2017 where I completed my training contract and ACA exams.

What is it about a career at Crowe that appealed to you?

Crowe appealed to me as it offers exposure across departments and working with different partners and senior management. I’ve been lucky during my time in Crowe to have had the opportunity to work in the tax department for a short period of time during tax deadlines. Being a medium-sized firm, whilst progressing through my training contract, I communicated with senior management and partners on a regular basis. I feel this is unique to medium-sized firms and allows us as employees to learn from individuals who are experts in our field.

Can you describe a typical day at Crowe?

It’s hard to describe a typical day at Crowe because they can vary so much depending on the time of the year and deadlines. Our weeks usually commence with a meeting on a Monday to set deadlines and priorities for the week ahead. Throughout the day I would check in on the progress of jobs that I am the manager on and assist with any queries from staff members. As a member of the management team, I am conscious of my responsibilities to mentor junior staff members to the best of my ability.

How would you describe the culture and work environment at Crowe?

From my time at Crowe, I have experienced the culture and work environment to be challenging, rewarding and social. People within the firm are friendly and approachable – if you have a question there is always someone available to help. I’ve formed some great friendships over the past few years while working in Crowe.

You initially joined Crowe as a graduate a few years back and you've now grown into a permanent employee. How has Crowe helped you in your career development?

Crowe supported me through successfully completing my ACA exams on my first attempt and becoming a qualified Chartered Accountant in 2021. Since then, I have worked as an Audit Senior and progressed to an Assistant Manager. This career development has opened opportunities for me to work on different projects such as managing bi-monthly VAT returns, reviewing management accounts, reviewing audit files, planning audit timelines and tendering for jobs. Throughout my journey, I have received constant support and encouragement from senior management and partners.

How does Crowe's graduate programme prepare you for a permanent role?

During the graduate programme, you begin learning the basic areas with the support of a senior member of the team. As you progress through your contract and gain necessary skills, you will be given more and more responsibility. With the required training and support from senior management, you will be expected to lead jobs and communicate with clients, which will help you to prepare for a permanent role.

What advice would you give to someone who is considering applying for our graduate programme?

I would advise someone who is considering applying to the graduate programme to connect with present or past employees of Crowe, for example through your college or LinkedIn. I would also encourage them to review the Crowe website to gain an insight into the firm and what we do. An important step before applying would be to research the professional accounting exams.

What advice would you give to current graduates who are just starting out in their careers?

I would advise them to enjoy it and take every opportunity available to them, don’t be afraid to ask questions and get as much exposure to different jobs as possible, including taking up the opportunity to work on different teams/departments if it arises. I would also advise them to be conscious of their commitment to completing their professional exams, it is important to ensure they set aside time for study and lectures while working, which can be a challenge at times.

How has the experience of completing the graduate programme and joining the company impacted your personal and professional growth?

Since joining the company nearly six years ago, I have gained experience in many areas of our field such as statutory audits, management accounts, VAT returns, corporation tax returns, income tax returns and internal control reports which has helped my professional growth span across many areas, giving me a diverse skillset as an accountant. Personally, I’ve made great work relationships and friendships over the past number of years which has had a positive impact on my work life.

Crowe Ireland offer an annual graduate programme. Speak to us to learn how you can be part of the next graduate intake.