- Matthew Downs
I joined EY with around 6 years of professional experience within technology consulting. I’d reached a point in my previous job where progression was linked to increasing my technical skills.
I wanted to use my technical background as a base, but develop a more commercial, client facing and business oriented skill-set. This seemed to fit almost exactly the requirement for Operational Transaction Services (OTS) at the time.
IT is so fundamental in transactions these days and I could see an amazing opportunity to be able to bring IT and technical knowledge along with transactional advisory as a single package. The first deal I worked on really opened my eyes to the level of detail, the diligence and the speed of execution that goes into a successful transaction.
Developing the ‘transaction mind-set’ and working at the pace required was definitely a challenge but one that I think anyone committed and open enough should relish. The team is so entrepreneurial and constantly evolving that if you’re able to bring technology expertise to the table and willing to learn the transaction skillset, there really isn’t a barrier for how far you can go.
As for my own development, I was fortunate enough to join the team as we started a large project from the inception phase, and was able to increasingly expand my role and responsibilities as the project progressed. It led to one of the team's largest engagements with a huge cross section of our local, and global teams involved.
When it came to discussing a case for promotion to manager, I already had over a year and half of experience within the team and had increased my involvement in the wider practice, so there was plenty of evidence to support the case. In fact, at the time I was promoted I was running a year-long project in Japan. This was definitely one of my proudest achievements in my career; it required a real adjustment in terms of approach and mind-set in order to flex to the culture and working style in Japan. Outside of work, it was also a phenomenal life experience and something I’ll never forget.
I’ve had so many other opportunities within the team to continue developing. I’ve recently been accepted onto a selection based training programme called EY Edge that aims to accelerate your leadership capabilities and really pushes you out of your comfort zone. It’s another one of my proudest career moments so far.
Every organisation I’ve worked for, or with has a tag line around having ‘the best people’ and placing enormous value in that. EY – and OTS in particular – is probably the first where I’ve seen actions back up the words. There is a marked, and obvious difference in the teaming and approach of people here. This isn’t just an internal view - our clients frequently feedback that the people oriented approach of our team makes them want to work with us again and again.
Working in Operational Transaction Services is like a souped-up version of project management or consultancy. Everything moves faster, changes more often and tests your abilities further. If you’re looking for a challenge and the chance to develop then, for me there isn’t a better place to be.