During the course of the assignment, I interviewed Mr. Zachary James (CPA). I was attracted to Zachary as a result of his African background. He moved to the United Kingdom immediately he completed his university education in a Kenyan university. He is a comical guy who at first meeting may be taken to be a failure. However, the more you interact with him, you realise the sobriety with which he handles life issues. Zachary is reportedly married to Sarah James and is blessed with three children. During the interview, he reports that he has the fewest children among his family members. He attributes this situation to the fact that he has spent a considerable duration of his life in the United Kingdom.
He is one of the accounts assistants at the Tesco plc. which operates a chain of supermarkets both within and outside the United Kingdom. He is based at one of the company’s branches located in London.
A company’s accounting department performs several duties aimed at identifying, recording, summarizing and analysing accounting transactions. Whereas some of these functions are simple are thereby assigned to junior staff, others are complex and are performed by senior staff in the department. As an accounts assistant, Zachary performs a wide range of duties. To begin with, he fills the delivery notes whenever suppliers deliver ordered goods to the supermarkets. Verification of delivered goods ensures that the suppliers bill only ordered and delivered goods. In case the suppliers were left to record the deliveries, the recorded values would be subjective and unreliable. Zachary signs the delivery notes and also records the quantity and quality of the delivered goods in the company’s records. He is required to be cautious in the process and avoid mistakes that would cause the company in the long run. Furthermore, Zachary is expected to audit the condition in which the goods are delivered before payments can be delivered to the suppliers by the company.
Secondly, Zachary executes departmental billings between different departments of the supermarket. Whenever, goods are transferred from one retail store to another, such transfer must be recorded in the company’s accounting books. This is aimed at ensuring that correct cost of goods sold is charged at respective branches. The records maintained by the account assistants are relied upon by the chief accountants to consolidate branch returns in the process of drafting consolidated financial statements. In essence, no transfer can be executed in the absence of an account assistant. Thirdly, Zachary is tasked with reconciling invoices, cash receipts and vendor statements. As is the case in other businesses, the company’s suppliers send periodic statements to the company. The company is expected to scrutinise the invoices and inform the supplier of any mistake of which they become aware. Some goods such as grocery are sold through other vendors who are located closer to the company’s customers. The periodic statements sent by these vendors must be confirmed by the company’s account assistants who verify their accuracy and authenticity. Fourthly, Zachary is tasked with reconciling employee reimbursements and bank statements as well. At the end of every month, the balances in bank as recorded in the company’s books of account are reconciled with that recorded at the bank. During this process, the company’s accounts assistants monitor unrecorded deposits, uncashed cheques and other bank charges which are yet to be reflected in the company’s cash book.
Fifthly, Zachary computes tax-related entries which are then entered in the company’s financial statements. Finally, Zachary noted that he is free to perform any duty assigned to him by the senior staff at the company. in this regard, he points out the additional duties he was assigned recently when the company expanded its operations to manufacture bread and cakes. He was tasked with predicting the costs and incomes that would arise from the implementation of the plan. Even though the task seemed complex at the start, it became easier with time. Following the success of his efforts in forecasting revenues and costs associated with the new department, the department has reported excellently. As a result, Zachary received job offers from other competitors which he declined to mention during the interview. The company upgraded his salary.
After completing his O’ level educations in one of Kenya’s secondary schools, Zachary proceeded to pursue a Bachelor’s Degree in Commerce and specialised in accounting option. He graduated in June 2006. Thereafter, he sat for the Certified Public Accountants examinations which are offered by the internationally recognised Kenya Accountants and Secretaries Examinations Board (KASNEB). He graduated as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) in 2010 and embarked on the search for a well-paying job. Owing to his experience and knowledge, he secured employment with the Tesco plc. in December 2011.
Zachary is a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) and is member of the Association of Certified Public Accountants (since 2012) and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England.
Likes and Dislikes
Zachary is a comical person who likes swimming and meeting friends. This has helped him create employment networks through which he has secured employment for most of his friends. In addition, he fancies computers and has undertaken courses in Sage, Pastel and quick books. He dislikes negative organisational politics which he claims can derail the achievements made by an individual.
During the interview, it became clear that adaptability to change played a critical role in developing one’s career. Furthermore, proper time management is important. Zachary encouraged me to join the profession claiming that it paid well.