Graduates & Interns

A group of our graduates and former interns talk about why they love working for Baker Tilly Staples Rodway, covering the supportive environment, ongoing training opportunities, work-life balance, social interaction and more!

Abbey Christophersen, BAS Graduate

I began my career transition at Baker Tilly Staples Rodway as a Financial Statements Processor in November 2021 in the Business Advisory Services department. The flexibility of this work opportunity has allowed concurrent study towards a Graduate Diploma in Professional Accounting with the intention of continuing toward qualifying as a Chartered Accountant.

My colleagues have supported me from the beginning, and I quickly gained insight into the working environment of a progressive accounting firm. I have experienced an inclusive and collaborative team environment with plenty of opportunities for continuous professional development, which has reaffirmed my desire to pursue a career in accounting via the graduate pathway.

At Baker Tilly there is a great work/life balance with opportunities to get involved in social events, such as the football team, and a consistent focus on supporting a healthy work environment. My time here so far has been full of rewarding experiences and learning opportunities. I look forward to the next step on my journey to become a Chartered Accountant through the graduate pathway.

Alex Hyland, BAS Graduate

I began my career with Baker Tilly Staples Rodway Auckland in early 2023 in the Business Advisory Services department. I was attracted to Baker Tilly by the friendly and inclusive team culture and flexible working arrangements, which allow me to easily keep my work life balance in check.

There is a big emphasis on training and further career progression, with ample support on the journey to becoming a chartered accountant, and national trainings with fellow grads on technical and soft skills.

The team are incredibly supportive and there are a lot of opportunities to get involved in social events, which have been a great way to get to know people outside of the office.

Working at Baker Tilly Staples Rodway has been incredibly rewarding with each day filled with variety and plenty of learning opportunities. I look forward to continuing my journey with Baker Tilly through Chartered Accountancy and beyond.

Bryna Karl, Audit Graduate

I started as an audit graduate at Baker Tilly in the Taranaki Office in February 2023. I had just finished university and was getting a bit of cabin fever in Hamilton and New Plymouth was the perfect solution. I felt part of the team from the moment I started. Our audit team is small, only seven of us, but it makes for a great training environment where everyone is involved and super supportive. Working in a team of young people has been good for my learning as they were in my shoes not so long ago.

One of the things I have found helpful is our monthly department meetings. The seniors run specific trainings every month based on areas that we are struggling with or need extra help with. They listen to our questions and come up with a training to address these gaps. These trainings are great as they open the floor for more discussion and are pointed specifically at what we would like to improve on.

Everyone at Baker Tilly is very social. They have many sports teams and activities outside of work, which has grown my relationship with my fellow graduates and colleagues. Baker Tilly also offers many training opportunities around the country, and I have been able to work with a variety of clients from different industries and locations due to the diverse nature of audit. This exposure is invaluable and definitely a bonus of working in a mid-tier firm.

Hamish Priest, Audit Graduate

Hamish Priest on a sunny day in QueenstownBaker Tilly Staples Rodway Auckland was extremely accommodating of my desire to start earlier as a graduate and looked to help as much as possible, which has always been a common theme through my experience here.

I found that Baker Tilly provides an amazing opportunity for graduates who are coming out of university looking for experience, responsibility, guidance and socialising. Baker Tilly believes that the work environment should be a welcoming, friendly and helpful space, which you experience the second you start.

I have been exposed to a variety of different business industries, auditing areas and discussions with clients. Through these times I have had support and guidance from the whole team, and I cannot express that enough. From other graduates to managers and even the partners, every job is tackled as a team.

Baker Tilly managed to cater for everything I needed in my independent situation and offered me so much more. The experience you get from the start and people you work with make it more than an accounting job!

Hazel Ouwehand, BAS Intermediate

Hazel Ouwehand enjoying a coffee sitting on a benchI started as a Business Advisory Services (BAS) Graduate at the Auckland office in 2021. I knew that Baker Tilly was the place I wanted to work after talking to firm representatives at the annual CAANZ Accounting Careers Fair. Since beginning at Baker Tilly, the inclusive environment and support system has far exceeded my expectations.

As a high-performance swimming athlete who trains 15+ hours a week, it was important to me that I was able to find a workplace where this would be understood and valued. Baker Tilly was very supportive and allowed me to work 30 hours per week so that I could pursue both of my dreams at once.

I was lucky enough to attend a BAS retreat for Graduates and Intermediates. At this retreat, we were given various case studies where we had to determine how best to solve the relevant issues and then present this to senior members of staff. This retreat was very insightful for me and I took away a lot of great learning points. It was also nice to cap off each night with a team dinner, allowing me a better opportunity to bond with my colleagues.

I am thoroughly enjoying working at Baker Tilly and no two days are the same. It is nice to be surrounded by other intellectuals who share my passion for accounting.

Jamie Carlson, BAS Graduate

I was drawn to Baker Tilly Staples Rodway due to all the great things I heard about their culture. From day one walking in the door of the Auckland office, I realised that it really was one of the best professional environments around.

Everyone was incredibly warm and welcoming trying to get me involved in activities with my new colleagues outside of the office such as out involvement in “sub” football. This led to an incredibly supportive work environment where I felt like I could ask anyone for assistance with my work, no matter how simple or complex my issue might have been.

The opportunity to understand where the theoretical knowledge gained at uni is applied in practice allows you to use this knowledge in a new way and understand it more fully, in turn allowing you to truly embrace every day as a learning experience.

The flexible work environment allowed me to continue my passion for exercise, allowing me to start my day early to take a long lunch so that I can go to the gym, allowing me to continue doing the things that I love as I transition into the professional world.

Jessica Wingate, BAS Graduate

I started as a graduate at Baker Tilly Staples Rodway Taranaki in November 2022. I chose Baker Tilly because of the interest they showed in what I wanted to do with my career, of which they have shown continuous support to help me achieve. Baker Tilly has great training opportunities. We are assigned a manager who trains us on how to complete a job from scratch and is always open to answer questions. In my 10 months here, I have attended a national graduate induction, a Xero training course, and a BAS training with the other graduates and intermediates across New Zealand. The opportunity for growth flourishes at Baker Tilly, as they are super willing to help you gain more knowledge and follow the route you wish to take.

I have been given the opportunity to complete a range of other work outside of general compliance. Bookkeeping has been an essential learning experience, as I can see what having a business is like from the client’s point of view, as well as becoming more familiar with Xero. I also complete monthly management reporting for a few clients, which has been great to delve into the finer details of a business, assist them in achieving their strategy and get to know them personally, which is what I was looking for in a role. I come from a farming background; hence I have always wanted to work with farmers. Baker Tilly has allowed me to do this and invested in me to ensure I have the required knowledge.

Every day I learn something new and expand my skills. Baker Tilly has also been a great place for my personal life to grow. It is easy to bond with colleagues. We have a range of social events and often play sport and go out for dinner and lunches together. It’s a great place to work and I am looking forward to my future here.

Josh Morris, BAS Graduate

I joined Baker Tilly Staples Rodway Wellington as a Business Advisory Services (BAS) intern in July 2022. Following this, I was offered a full-time role and began employment in February 2023. My internship provided the opportunity to put theory from university into practice, interact with clients and gain a better understanding of how a CA firm operates. From day one, I was attending team trainings and completing work beyond what I expected to do as an intern. This experience, combined with the supportive culture at Baker Tilly, smoothed my transition into full time employment.

What appealed to me was the company’s genuine interest in my professional development. Everyone in the team is accessible for questions and always willing to sit down and work through any issues I have. Help is readily available, and I have never felt micromanaged or pressured to meet unrealistic deadlines. The culture encourages collaboration and our team holds weekly BAS meetings to gain clarification on issues and ask for help from management and peers.

Baker Tilly has also been incredibly supportive of my professional ambitions. I expressed interest in doing some audit and tax work. Management were more than accommodating and recently allowed me to complete a two-month audit assignment as well as my normal BAS duties.

It has been reassuring to know the immense development Baker Tilly puts into its members. In September, I attended the annual BAS training seminar in Auckland. This provides the opportunity to interact with other graduates and learn from national board members and partners. Our office attends internal training sessions, CAANZ seminars and presentations from a range of industry experts. My time here has been overwhelmingly positive and I am excited to see what the future holds.

Lucy Fastier, Audit Graduate

I started at Baker Tilly Staples Rodway Taranaki as an audit graduate in February 2023. I felt drawn to Baker Tilly since it ticked all the boxes that I was looking for in a job. Looking to move back home to New Plymouth after university, I was searching for a workplace that would support me as I began my career and started studying to become a Chartered Accountant. I wanted somewhere with a positive environment where I would feel as though I am part of the team.

I’m glad to be able to say Baker Tilly has everything I was looking for and that I couldn’t be happier with the place I chose. I began my journey with Baker Tilly as an intern in the summer of 2021/22 where I worked in the administration team. This allowed me to gain good insight into the organisation and touch on different departments to help me decide which path I wanted to take once I finished university. Even in a temporary position, I felt included and part of the team. This confirmed the positive work environment and cemented my decision to want to return permanently as a graduate.

Because of the small size of the Taranaki audit team, it is a tight-knit group. I learn directly from senior staff and they are engaged with me and my learning. With a supportive team around me, available to answer questions and offer feedback, I feel that even in a relatively short time, I have been able to make huge strides and improve my understanding. Baker Tilly also offers plenty of training, which has allowed me to grow into my role. I feel like I am always deepening my knowledge of the different concepts I’m working with on a day-to-day basis.

Maylee Heng, Audit Graduate

Joining Baker Tilly Staples Rodway Auckland as a graduate has provided me with valuable experiences and knowledge. Working within the audit and assurance department has been instrumental in the professional development of my career.

This role has exposed me to diverse industries, offering insights into their operations. The open-door policy at Baker Tilly ensures ample opportunities for interaction and learning from a wide range of individuals, including fellow graduates to directors.





Rachel Booker, BAS Graduate

I started in Business Advisory Services at Baker Tilly Staples Rodway Christchurch in March 2023 after returning to university in my 30s. Before that I was a stay-at-home Mum and ran my own one-woman-band business while my kids were young.

It took time to work out what I wanted to be when I “grew up” but accounting felt like it would be a good fit and I ended up (mostly!) enjoying my studies. When looking at where to apply after graduation I knew work-life balance was a priority, and wanted to work with great people in a supportive and fun environment. Baker Tilly stood out when I caught an online graduate job fair, and as soon as I left the interview I knew that this was where I wanted to work!

The people at Baker Tilly make a difference both to the workplace and our clients. As a newbie to the office, I felt supported, welcomed, and encouraged. There was no question too silly, and plenty of people ready and willing to help. I really appreciate that we get feedback early on, and that it is a good balance of constructive and encouraging. It’s helpful to know what I can improve on but it’s nice to hear what I’m doing well too. You can see the thought and care for our clients as well. Accounting is more than just numbers, and it’s great to work alongside people who embody that. 

The graduate programme paired me with a buddy to help me through those first few jobs, and that was invaluable. It was encouraging to see how well she was doing, having started at Baker Tilly one year before she was helping me! The support and learning opportunities are super helpful. We have frequent training sessions, which help to solidify knowledge and skills and ensure we’re up to date with any changes. There is also the opportunity to meet with and learn from those at other offices, which is fun and rewarding. Every day brings something different and having a workplace with such a great culture means I can genuinely say I like my job!

Rajni Thakur, Audit Graduate

Hi, my name is Rajni, and I am audit graduate at Baker Tilly Staples Rodway Hawke’s Bay. I previously worked in accounting & audit for seven years in India. When I was searching for a job in New Zealand, one of my friends suggested Baker Tilly Staples Rodway as a very good firm to work at. I started following up and after some time, an opportunity became available as an audit graduate. I was short-listed and was through the recruitment process. The overwhelming moment for me when I received a phone call that I was successful and was offered the role.

I was very excited to start my first job in New Zealand and with such a big firm. It was challenging, but I have very helpful team members and a buddy. They are always keen to help at any time. Our director and manager are also very helpful and understanding. They always make me feel comfortable with my work and are good in explaining things.

Baker Tilly has taught me to be very confident and self-assured. In just six months, I have learned a lot. I enjoy the working environment and helpful employees. Baker Tilly offers training and learning opportunities to enhance knowledge. There is always a good balance between work and other activities, and space to manage work and personal life. Even during busy periods, we enjoy working. I feel very lucky to work at Baker Tilly Staples Rodway.

Trang Hoang, BAS Graduate

When I was about to finish university, I decided to apply for a job at a chartered accountant firm. Baker Tilly caught my attention because it was the kind of company I had been searching for. Starting as a new graduate was challenging but rewarding. There was so much to learn, but there was also excellent support available at every step. I had a buddy who patiently showed me how to do workpapers, explain why something is a credit or debit, and help me apply my theoretical knowledge to real-world situations. I also received a lot of training and if I came across a complex technical issue, managers or directors would explain it until I understood.

National training was a great opportunity to make new friends and network with people from other offices. I feel extremely lucky, not only because of the skills I have learned but also the positive working environment. The company regularly organises exciting activities to bring people together. From occasional family gatherings at sports parks with fun games and delicious food to monthly birthday morning teas and multicultural celebrations, we share food, stories, and create lasting memories.

During a difficult time like the recent floods, I appreciated the support from the directors even more. They provided financial and emotional support, and I always felt cared for. Baker Tilly is a big friendly team with great support, fun activities, and appreciation. I believe there is so much more to learn and enjoy as I continue my career here.

Victor Chua, Tax Graduate

Victor Chua standing in Wynyard QuarterMy experience as a graduate at Baker Tilly Staples Rodway has been amazing. I started as a Tax Graduate at the Auckland office in 2022, after doing an internship in the summer of 2020/21. From day one I had the opportunity to get involved with client work. I have worked with large multi-national companies right down to your average Joe.

The culture at Baker Tilly is amazing. It is a very welcoming environment where each and every person is valued. I was quite nervous in my first few weeks, however everyone was helpful and supportive, which allowed me to feel comfortable working here. Through our team morning teas, training lunches, social events and cultural celebrations, you get the opportunity to get to know everyone and feel like part of the team.

Our buddy system is a great initiative that allows for a smooth transition into the team. Our graduates are paired with senior staff members who show us the ropes and answer any questions we have. I learn from and work alongside highly trained and experienced professionals at the top of their field.

There is a large focus on training and upskilling here at Baker Tilly. We have regular training where we learn from experts which has been helpful in developing my knowledge. Baker Tilly has great study support, which has been very valuable while I work towards becoming a Chartered Accountant.

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