Career in Tax

My tax placement in KPMG – the more you put in, the more you get out!

Hi my name is Eimear Nyhan and I am currently on placement in the VAT department in KPMG Dublin. My placement is six months long and is part of the third year of my Bachelor of Commerce degree in University College Cork. I joined KPMG in the end of March and have been enjoying every moment here since.

I guess from as early as studying Business for the Junior Certificate, I always had a natural flare for accounting, I use to get such a buzz from balancing those Balance Sheets. So naturally I took Accounting and Business as subjects for the Leaving Certificate. I further chose Bachelor of Commerce in University College Cork as I felt it gave me the most options and enable me to get a feel for all business modules before specialising. From here I have done quite a few internships mainly in Audit and although Audit is interesting in its own way, I knew I was more suited and interested in numerical and figure orientated work.

I have always aimed to secure a placement with one of the Big 4 companies. After researching each of the Big 4, KPMG stood out to me immediately. KPMG is the largest Tax consulting firm in Ireland. Alongside this KPMG have the best exam success rates. Moreover in 2017 they were voted best graduate training and development programme. This alone gave me reassurance that KPMG is the best place to kick start my career. Having spent sixteen weeks in the firm I could not but say that not only were my initial preconceptions met but they were over accomplished.

In KPMG once you join you specialise into one particular department under the broader Tax line. The VAT department is further split between Advisory and Compliance, however as a placement you will get the opportunity to experience both areas. Compliance is all about the VAT return which means it is numbers driven and if numbers are your thing you will really enjoy getting stuck into these. This will enable you to develop an understanding of the VAT system, you will become familiar with the different VAT rates and the different rules and exemptions relating to the treatment of goods and services. On the other hand advisory is more factual and law based. The main goal in VAT advisory is to build evidence on the available facts and information of the case and subsequently provide the appropriate advice. Advisory is very interesting as you get to work on a variety of clients from Aviation, to FMCG Companies, to investment Funds and Restructuring queries. Advisory allows you to build on the knowledge you attained from Compliance, putting it into practice, but in a more specified way to solve the facts of the case. My day to day roles in KPMG’s VAT department include; completing VAT Returns, completing Restructuring Queries, working with Revenue on VAT specific queries and working on proposals and client deliverables.

The support provided by the KPMG Business School is exemplary right from the beginning of your time here. The first day involves induction training for all placements, where you get an insight into the different departments, get your laptop set up, get information on all the extra-curricular activities that you can get involved in and most importantly get to know everyone in your intake. The induction training is a great way to gradually get you ready for office life. Following on from this you will have IT virtual training and e-learnings, which allow you to become confident and familiar with the IT systems in KPMG. The training and support does not end here. In KPMG we have training sessions monthly, normally of a Friday afternoon. These involve team building skills, nutritional talks and development days where we are supported in our integration into the working world.

KPMG is all about work life balance. I was fortunate enough to have joined the Konnect Committee when I started here. The Konnect Committee is a fantastic way to make friends and become involved and to have your say in social events. We organise a range of events with the aim of one a month. These events are small events like Welcome Nights and our weekly venture across the road to Dicey’s balcony, to large events such Weekend Trips Away, to Boat Parties, to Mystery tours. HR organise fantastic events for us over our time here with a huge Summer BBQ and Sport evening during the summer. Giving back to the community and focusing on Corporate Social Responsibility is an important aspect of your time here in KPMG, you will get the opportunity to work on the grounds of St Michaels House were we garden, clean and paint and we are fortunate here in the VAT department to organise our own CSR event. We host an annual quiz night and again there are plenty of opportunities for placements and interns to give up of their time and help in the running of this event. There are also Department Nights out and Team Events which are always a good opportunity to network in a relaxed environment.

A whole new world of opportunities will be open to you after completing a placement here in KPMG. You get advice and guidance from the trainees, HR and your Performance Managers on the different routes and possibilities as a graduate. The experience you get is great for your CV but just as important is the numerous friends you make during your time in KPMG. Within a few weeks I already knew that I had found the department and area that I wanted to work in after college, this has empowered me ahead of my final year. I hope to return to KPMG’s VAT Department after completing a masters, from here I will finish the Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) and Chartered Accounting exams. You are challenged from the moment you arrive, and it is up to you to the make the most of your experience here, the more you put in the more you get out. The ball is in your court.

Career in Tax

DIT student Michelle shares her tax intern experience at KPMG

Hello, my name is Michelle Murphy and I am currently on a 5-month placement in the Financial Services Tax Department in KPMG Dublin as part of my third year Business and Management Degree course in the Dublin Institute of Technology (DIT).

Business and Accounting were my favourite subjects in secondary school so the Business and Management degree in DIT was an obvious choice for me because of the sheer diversity of the modules it offered. The 5-month placement option in third year made the course very attractive as I knew it would be a great opportunity to apply my learning to a real business environment and to gain new experiences. Third year was also my first introduction to the Taxation module which covered Income Tax computations and basic VAT legislation. It was completely different to all the other subjects I had studied, and I really enjoyed the module.  I realized that work experience in a Taxation department would enhance my understanding of Tax and assist me with the more advanced modules in fourth year.

When preparing for my placement interviews, I researched the Big Four Companies and KPMG stood out for winning the award for being the ’Most Popular Graduate Employer’ and ‘Best Graduate Training and Development Program’. I knew when I went for my interview for KPMG Dublin that they had three main departments: Audit, Tax & Advisory.  My interview gave me a great first impression of KPMG. Every person I had spoken to was so kind and helpful and even in the interview the two interviewers showed a perfect balance of professionalism and friendliness.

Much to my delight KPMG offered me a placement in the Financial Services Tax department. It is an excellent introduction to life in a professional environment and their Buddy System along with a really supportive manager helped me settle in very quickly. My day to day tasks are assigned by the seniors and managers and it has given me time to learn all the basics and to carry out these tasks efficiently and effectively. Our initial training included several workshops covering IT skills and team building and there was much emphasis on ensuring we settled into the KPMG team. I was lucky enough to be placed in the Financial Services Tax Department where I am getting the opportunity to manage the compliance obligations of some of the world’s biggest Aircraft Leasing companies.

There is a fantastic social side to working in KPMG as there are nights out arranged every week along with regular department lunches. Their dedicated social committee arrange many social events which are so enjoyable, they are a great way to get to know people and it creates a lovely office atmosphere. We also had a very worthwhile day helping the maintenance team in St. Michael’s House in Ballymun with the KPMG Corporate Social Responsibility program.

I love working in the KPMG Financial Services Tax Department and I really appreciate the chance to work with such a high calibre group of people. It is a fantastic training ground for me. Getting this experience at such an early stage of my career will stand to me and it makes me more determined to work hard in my final year and hopefully re-join KPMG and complete my tax and accountancy exams.

Alisha Kearns, Career in Tax, EY, UCC

My tax co-op experience with EY


My name is Alisha and I am currently on placement in the Tax department in EY Cork. My placement is six months long and is part of the third year of my Accounting degree in University College Cork. I joined EY in the beginning of January and have loved every minute of my time working with the firm since!

Where my journey in tax began…

During my time in secondary school I did a lot of research in pursuing a business-related degree at third level. I chose to do Accounting as I really enjoyed studying the subject along with Economics for my Leaving Certificate. It is difficult to know what career to pursue when you’re only 17/18 years old. I remember one day during sixth year, my Accounting teacher informed the class about the Irish Tax Institute’s Third Level Scholarship. When I looked into it I instinctively knew a career in tax was for me. I applied and was very lucky to be the chosen recipient of the scholarship in 2015.

Why EY?

During the summer after my second year in college I had to decide where I would apply for my placement. I knew I wanted to join tax in a ‘Big 4’ firm but which one exactly? I chose EY for a number of reasons; the support that the firm provide to their trainees, their Vision 2020 which aims to ‘build a better working world’ and the fact that EY would assist me in gaining insightful and beneficial experience to help me kick start my career. I was quite nervous before starting placement as I had no prior experience working in a professional services firm but from day one support has been provided in abundance which helped me to feel at ease.

Life as an Intern

My first couple of weeks at EY involved different forms of training which provided a good foundation before starting work in the office. Each new-joiner was assigned a buddy during this time. A ‘Buddy’ is the person we go to for any questions that we have. They are always there to lend a helping hand.  I have been assigned as Buddy for this summer’s tax interns. This just goes to show that, even though I have only been with the firm since January, I am already capable of taking on the position of responsibility in showing others how to get into the swing of things at EY!

As one of only two interns working in Tax in the Cork office at the moment, I am at the bottom of the hierarchical structure that exists at EY, similar to the majority of other professional services firms. This hierarchical structure is not evident in the office due to the open floor plan. Nobody has their own office, so this makes my seniors much more approachable which definitely helps to improve the working environment. Everyone in the office is very friendly and they are all willing to help me, along with my fellow intern, with any queries that we have. They understand that as interns we do not have any in-depth knowledge or expertise in tax, but they are all willing to teach and guide us as we expand on our knowledge.

EY Cork’s Tax department consists of approximately 40 people who all work under the UK & Ireland Tax services line. As the Cork department is significantly smaller than Dublin’s, it is not divided into specific tax departments yet consists of people who specialise in different areas. This has allowed me to get a taste of different areas of tax from Corporate to Income Tax and VAT. I contribute to the workplace by mainly giving those higher up a helping hand with more basic tasks although I am also assigned more specific tax related jobs albeit less frequently. I am often asked to compose engagement agreements for a wide range of clients, process invoices, call Revenue with a client enquiry or even simply print and file documents away. As a new-joiner it is important to be able to carry out even the simplest of tasks as efficiently and effectively as possible. Placement is a learning experience, so I always try to take the most from each task that I am given.

It is not all work and no play though! EY emphasizes the importance of having a good work-life balance. There are many nights out organised for interns and for employees within each department. Recently, my colleagues and I took part in Pitch and Putt after work one day which was great fun! On Fridays before bank holidays there is a “Tea-G-I Friday” break organised in which an array of cakes and biscuits is provided and a slide show is presented that gives a roundup of any news and updates within the office. There are many sporting activities to take part in also, from Tag Rugby to Golf and even if sport isn’t your thing you can join the EY choir!

My future career plans & ambitions

My time on placement in EY has given me invaluable experience and foresight into my chosen career path. It was hard to imagine when sitting in college lectures what working life would be like after my degree, but work placement has given me the practical experience that is not available in a classroom. This experience has increased my motivation and drive heading into my final year, as I now have a better understanding of the career that I am pursuing. I hope to come back to EY Cork when I graduate and complete the Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) and Chartered Accountant and exams. For college requirements, my time on placement should end in early June but I have asked to stay on until the end of July so if that doesn’t prove how much I have enjoyed my time so far at EY, I don’t know what will!







Career in Tax

My tax co-op placement in Deloitte Limerick

Hello, my name is Emma Costigan and I am currently on co-op placement in the tax department in Deloitte Limerick. I am a third year Law & Accounting student in the University of Limerick.

There are a number of reasons why I chose Law & Accounting in UL. I hadn’t actually studied accounting for my Leaving Cert, but was always interested in business, and from researching the course I learned that it wasn’t essential to have accounting experience. The potential career prospects offered from the course were more varied than those from a typical business degree. Also the chance to partake in 8 months of placement was very attractive to me.

My first exposure to tax was in 2nd year of college when we studied capital taxation. This mostly involved CAT and CGT. I really liked the variety of computations mixed with theory as it complemented my course extremely well. I had always liked maths and found the legislation easier to read due to my law experience. In third year, I studied income tax. I found this particularly interesting as income tax is probably one of the most common taxes people deal with in their day to day lives. After studying these two modules I was determined to gain experience in the tax world.

In September of third year I was fortunate enough to be chosen by Deloitte for an interview for co-op placement. Of all the big 4 companies, Deloitte was definitely the company which I was most eager to gain experience in. Not only is Deloitte one of the leading accountancy firms in the world, it is also Ireland’s number one graduate recruiter. Combined with an impressive list of award titles and the emphasis that is placed on workplace initiatives, I knew Deloitte was the firm I wanted to work for.

The first thing that struck me when I started my placement in January, was the friendliness of everyone in the office and their willingness to teach others. I had assumed that when working in such a big firm that new starters would be treated as a number and have little personal interaction with senior colleagues. Thankfully this is not the case in Deloitte. No matter how big or small your query is, people always take the time to take you through the work you’re doing – whether they are a trainee or a partner.

My workload as a co-op varies from day to day. While I mostly concentrate on income tax and corporation tax, there is a lot of variety from case to case. One day I could be working on a small local firm and the next a huge multinational company. This variation means that the work is always interesting and also allows me to get an insight into all different types of businesses.

I’ve also been involved in some small consultancy cases. I found these particularly interesting. Although difficult at first, it is very satisfying when the issue is worked through and can be presented to the client. These cases allowed me to get an in-depth analysis of particular areas of tax which I may otherwise not encounter in my day to day work.

Aside from day to day work, Deloitte offers loads of extra initiatives to support employees. In January the whole tax team took part in a get fit step challenge. This was a great way to get to know people as we were divided into teams and also encouraged us to get active at lunch time and after work. More recently the co-ops took part in a Design Thinking workshop in Dublin. Hosted by the UCD innovation academy, the day was designed to encourage us to think outside of the box and approach situations in ways that we would not normally think of. Another initiative is that of the compressed working week during summer months. This is particularly attractive to me as I am not from Limerick so it means I can travel home early at the weekend.

Overall, I would highly recommend a co-op placement with Deloitte as it provides excellent exposure to a career in tax. I thoroughly enjoyed my experience here and will definitely pursue a career in tax in the future.



Career in Tax

The evolving nature of tax and the international dimension caught my interest

Hi! My name is Mark Casey, and I’m a tax trainee in the tax department in KPMG, Dublin.

Before I started working in KPMG, I studied Commerce in University College Dublin, and received a Master of Accounting from the UCD Michael Smurfit Graduate Business School.

Why I got into tax?

During my final year of my undergraduate degree in UCD, I decided to apply for trainee programmes with various accountancy firms through the milk round process. I knew that if I was successful in securing a position, the experience would prove invaluable in my professional career.

Prior to the milk round process, it had never crossed my mind to consider a career in tax. Having researched the various positions before applying for the trainee programmes, I took a particular interest in tax.

Tax was particularly appealing to me, as it incorporated a number of other subjects – not only tax – which I had completed during my undergraduate education including accounting, law and economics. In addition to this, the continuously evolving nature of tax, as well as its international scope, caught my interest from the outset.


Having completed the milk round’s application and interview process, I was faced with the task of differentiating and choosing between the different firms from which I had received an offer. KPMG was the clear choice for me.

Notwithstanding KPMG’s reputation as an outstanding employer and its extremely impressive tax department, what really struck me about KPMG was that the other trainees and staff were down-to-earth and welcoming. Albeit cliché, I have learned that it really is the people that make the place.

In addition to this, it was clear to me from the beginning that KPMG places an emphasis on extracurricular activities – an aspect of which is very important to me. I have actively been involved in KPMG’s golf society to date, and last year I signed up for golf lessons through the firm. The lessons were a great way to meet new people in different departments across the firm (and they were badly needed!). There have also been numerous golf outings to date, which have been thoroughly enjoyable.

My experience in tax so far?

Over the past year and half working in tax, the exposure I have received is next to none.

I have been involved in almost every aspect of tax from a corporate and personal tax perspective, in both a compliance and advisory capacity. Throughout my short career so far, I have been challenged with the task of managing the compliance obligations of large multinational corporations and high net worth individuals, while also advising on global expansions and large company reorganisations. The wide variety of work I perform on a day-to-day basis proves for a challenging environment to work in, with no two days ever being the same.

Within the first few weeks of working in tax, I was allocated a number of income tax clients which I was expected to take ownership of, ensuring that their tax returns were filed and other tax obligations were met. Although this was daunting at first, I really gained to learn a lot from the experience, and the level of responsibility I was given from the beginning has really set the tone for my training contract so far.

I am enjoying working in tax, and I am confident that the skills I have accumulated to date working as a tax trainee will be transferrable and instrumental in my future endeavours, regardless of where my professional career takes me.

Career in Tax

How I arrived in the EY tax department as an intern

Hi there, I am Bryan Rohan and I am previously did a tax tax summer intern with EY.

Often people are surprised to hear that my degree is in economics and political science. For them,  it’s hard to unite the ideas of financial services with social sciences and the humanities. I know the feeling, because when everyone else was talking about what they wanted to do after college I was still clueless.

The more that I looked into careers in financial services, the more that I realised there was space for people with diverse degrees at EY. For me a career in tax is natural as it is something that is at the intersection of my interests from college. Through studying economics I realised I had a strong interest in finance – in particular how industries structure themselves to maximise their utility. Combined with this was my interest in politics, in particular international relations and international law.

Working in tax relies on looking at legislation both nationally and globally, looking at tax treaties between countries and also at upcoming legislation and how this will affect businesses. It also gives me an insight into how companies can structure and restructure themselves to minimise their risks and maximise their efficiency.

EY’s drive for diversity in academic backgrounds means that someone like me, whose background may not stereotypically lead to a career in financial services, get the chance to test the waters.

After spending twelve weeks interning in the UK & Ireland Tax service line I decided that tax at EY is where I want to begin my career.

Career in Tax, Kate Healy

Our Scholarship winner shares her tax Co-Op experience with us.

My name is Kate Healy and I’m currently studying Law and Accounting at the University of Limerick. In January 2017, I began an 8 month Co-Op Placement in the tax department in Deloitte Limerick.

I began to research a career in tax during my Leaving Cert year in secondary school when trying to choose which course I would like to study at third level. One of my teachers suggested that I apply to the Irish Tax Institute Third Level Scholarship programme and I was very fortunate to be selected as a recipient of the scholarship in 2014.

I chose tax as I felt it would suit my background in law and accounting as I would be able to use my knowledge of reading and interpreting legislation but I would also have the opportunity to develop my skills in reading and analysing financial statements. The dynamic nature of tax is another reason that I chose this department as no two days are the same and this keeps my job interesting as well as providing opportunities for me to learn every day. I was also drawn to the fact that a career in tax allows you to achieve a dual qualification as both a Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) and as a Chartered Accountant.

My Co-Op Placement with Deloitte followed on from a 10 week Summer Internship which I undertook during the summer of 2016, between second and third year of my degree. I felt that an internship would enhance my CV and I also wanted to gain an insight into what it was like to work in a tax department before deciding where to undertake my Co-Op Placement. As well as this, the internship was a source of income for the summer and I wanted to get experience in a job that is more relevant to my career aspirations than the typical student summer jobs I have had in previous years.

When I began researching internships with different firms, Deloitte really stood out for me. From researching the Deloitte website and speaking with current and former employees, it became very apparent that Deloitte is hugely employee focused. As a training firm, Deloitte plays a huge role in the personal and professional development of its employees. The emphasis that is placed on work/life balance through initiatives such as the Sports & Social Club and the compressed working week during summer months is another aspect of life at Deloitte that really attracted me to this particular firm.

Our first week in Deloitte was spent in the Dublin office taking part in an induction programme. This was a great chance to meet other interns and improve on skills such as communication and teamwork which have proved essential in the office. On our first day on the tax floor, we were assigned a buddy who is usually a trainee 1. The buddy system worked really well as I always had that one point of contact if I needed to ask a question. From the beginning of my placement, I was amazed at just how friendly and helpful everyone is. Everyone made a real effort to get to know us and this made settling-in so easy.

Both during the internship and now, during my Co-Op Placement, I have had hands on experience of what working on the tax floor is like. I’ve worked with many different clients and while a lot of my work has been in corporation tax compliance, being in a smaller regional office means I have been exposed to a variety of areas such as corporate and international tax consultancy and income tax.

Now that I have returned to Deloitte for a longer placement, I can really put the experience that I gained during the internship to use and develop my skills and knowledge further. I am really enjoying working in the tax department and I can get a real sense of just how varied and exciting the work can be. As well as all of this, I have also been able to enjoy the social aspect of Deloitte. Between cake and bun days and pizza parties and nights-out there is always something to look forward to.

For undergraduates and trainees, the learning and development support available in Deloitte is second to none. Deloitte provides ample study leave and support throughout professional exams and this is important for me to know when making decisions about my future. As interns, Deloitte also provided support to us in developing our own individual career plans. I took part in “Your Future, Your Focus”, a half-day session which was aimed at helping us to understand the things we value in life and how to work your career around these values. We also attended 2 hour “Insight Sessions” each Friday. These sessions involved a manager from each of the departments within Deloitte speaking about their career journey and the work involved in their department. This gave us a chance to learn about departments other than tax and helped us to decide where we would like to work going forward.

Having been in Deloitte for a couple of months, I now know that tax is definitely a career that I would like to pursue. I would highly recommend an internship or Co-Op Placement with Deloitte to anyone who might be interested in learning more about a career in tax. Not only will you gain a great insight into the area of tax and life in a Big Four firm but it’s also a great chance to meet like-minded people and have a lot of fun!



Career in Tax, EY, Sinead Sharkey

From healthcare to tax with EY

Hi! My name is Sinead Sharkey and I am a tax trainee with EY.

My route to EY is somewhat different to the norm. I came from a healthcare background and worked for a couple of years post qualification before taking a year out to travel with friends. On my return, I quickly realised that I wanted to extend my skill set and try something new.

I came across EY’s graduate programme and was instantly attracted to it. What appealed to me most was that you didn’t have to have a business degree to gain entry into the programme; in fact they encourage people from all backgrounds to apply, the idea being that they have an array of people with different career experiences. EY’s “on the job” training really appealed to me also so in September 2015 I joined the graduate programme and haven’t looked back since.

When I think back, it was definitely a challenging experience to change career to such a different sector. Luckily, I have had a hugely rewarding experience to date since working in the UKI Indirect Tax department. Through the excellent internal training, mentoring and friendly open atmosphere in the office I have gained so much knowledge already in just over a year working here.

Another aspect to the job is the study and exams you do alongside work which EY are incredibly supportive of in terms of study leave and internal training. Although it can be quite challenging attending lectures at the weekend after a long week of work, they are manageable and really help progress your career. I have even been fortunate enough to receive an award from the Irish Tax Institute for an exam I sat last year.

On a final note, since starting in EY, so many doors and opportunities have opened up for me. These include the new set of skills I am constantly building on as well as various projects I have gotten to work on since joining this global organisation. I was even lucky enough to be sent on a secondment to another large financial company, an experience that really developed me both professionally and technically and also gave me great insight into working in industry.

When I reflect on the year I have just had, I am overwhelmed by my professional development and I am proud to be part of EY’s culture of high performing teams.

Career in Tax, KPMG, Laura Murphy

Excited to see where my career in tax will take me!

Hi! My name is Laura Murphy and I am a tax trainee with KPMG.

I studied Commerce in University College Cork before joining KPMG as a trainee in 2015. My career in tax began through the KPMG internship program in 2014, following my 3 years of University. I spent a year abroad in the US and while I was away I applied for the programme in KPMG and interviewed for a position over Skype. I interviewed for a tax role as my curiosity on the subject was sparked by various tax cases becoming extremely topical in the news with various multinational companies and my attention was drawn to the relevance and importance of the various taxes not only in Ireland but, around the world.

I was a member of the income tax team during my internship and also got exposure to some Research and Development (R&D) work over the course of my internship. My 3 months in KPMG that summer proved to be extremely valuable as it gave me great exposure to the tax world in practice and developed my keen interest in the area of taxation.

I re-joined the KPMG tax team following my final year of college and I currently work with both the income tax and the transfer pricing teams.

My work in income tax is primarily focused on Global Mobility clients, i.e. Individuals who have been sent abroad by their employers to work in different jurisdictions. This involves working with a very diverse range of clients with varying requirements. The work has proven to be both interesting and challenging as it involves the use of Irish legislation and various double Tax Treaties together, in order to understand an individual’s taxable position in Ireland. Every individual’s circumstances are different and it is important for me to pay close attention to detail at all times.

I also work with the transfer pricing team in KPMG. For anyone who knows about transfer pricing, they will know it is a highly topical and current area of taxation globally. My work with the transfer pricing team has been very interesting and challenging as the legislation and guidance surrounding the topic is changing constantly and is putting businesses under more and more pressure to ensure they are compliant. Transfer pricing has allowed me to incorporate what I learned from my Economics major in UCC, into my everyday work life and has developed my critical thinking skills, from a tax and economic perspective over my past year on the team.

In my role as a tax trainee I have obtained a variety of skills which I am constantly developing through my career in KPMG and also through my participation in the Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) and CAI examinations. I am currently studying for my CAI exams and following their completion I hope to complete the Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) examinations. I am excited to see where my career in tax leads in the future and I would highly recommend it to anyone who is interested in pursuing an interesting and rewarding career.


Career in Tax

Taxation in 1916: Then and Now

Edward BurkeTaxation has changed a lot in Ireland over the years, and yet certain taxes have remained broadly the same.  Given the 100 year commemoration celebrations, one of our members Charles Garavan, has produced this really insightful article in the latest edition of the Irish Tax Review entitled “Taxation in 1916: Then and Now”.  A great read. ITR Article (1916)

Career in Tax, Deloitte, Noel Gavin

My internship launched my tax career!

Hi, my name is Noel Gavin and I am a tax trainee in Deloitte, Dublin.

Blog pic

I studied Law and Accounting in the University of Limerick before going on to complete the Master of Accounting programme in Smurfit Graduate Business School. The skills that I have attained from my college studies, such as research skills and the ability to analyse complex data, have been instrumental since I started working in tax.

I re-joined Deloitte in September 2015 having completed an internship which I found to be simply invaluable. By working in the Private Clients division of the tax department I deal with various aspects of tax on a daily basis including Income Tax, Capital Gains Tax, Capital Acquisitions Tax, Stamp Duty and LPT.

Why Tax?

I chose to pursue a career in tax after completing my internship as it had opened my eyes to how exciting and challenging a career in tax would be. It’s exciting because no two days are the same in the dynamic world of tax. This is due to the fact that you are dealing with a broad range of clients on a daily basis that have different issues and will face different outcomes in relation to their individual circumstances. This variety keeps the work interesting. One minute you could be preparing an income tax return, and the next you could be preparing a consultancy piece on the tax implications under the various tax heads of a company re-org.

Therefore, we must ensure that we tailor our advice to the individual client needs in order to ensure that they receive the most tax efficient solutions. It’s challenging as a result of the fact that it is constantly evolving through the development of new legislation. This can effectively give rise to new issues for clients but also provides the scope for new solutions to be identified and provided by us through the application of our knowledge of this legislation to the individual scenarios we are presented with.


I chose Deloitte because I had met their representatives at various graduate fairs and from speaking with them I knew that the firm must have had such a wonderful working environment as they were so enthusiastic and passionate about their roles within the firm.

My first week comprised of an induction training programme with all the other interns along with various social events in the evenings. This week was very beneficial as it helped us build our soft skills and communication skills. It was also a great networking opportunity as it gave the interns a chance to get to know each other. During this first week we also met our Buddies. A buddy was an individual that had gone through the induction phase recently and would remember what it was like to be a newbie in such a big firm.

During my internship I was allocated a number of clients that I was to be caseworker on. This ensured that I got real hands-on practical experience and effectively meant that I would be responsible for ensuring that information requests were sent and that returns were prepared on a timely basis. In addition, I was also brought to several client meetings and was involved in a number of succession planning projects for high net worth individuals.

One of the greatest things about Deloitte is the value they put on having a good work/life balance. This was obvious from the numerous amount of social events which were organised and which we were encouraged to attend. Some examples include the annual summer party which involved a BBQ and Tag Rugby tournament and a drinks evening with the partners in tax which gave us the opportunity to get to know them personally. This also made it less daunting when it came to reporting to them in relation to projects in the office.

My experience at Deloitte was very positive and I believe that this was a result of the open and friendly environment within the firm. The people were all so helpful with ensuring that I settled in and that I was comfortable in my role. They also made it their priority to ensure that I felt part of the team immediately. The greatest benefit of the internship was the fact that it really launched my career for me. After completing it I knew that tax was for me and when I re-joined Deloitte on the graduate programme I really appreciated the fact that I was already familiar with the firm and its internal structure and procedures.

My Future

I am currently enrolled to do my Part 2 CTA exams this April. Following this, I will go on to do the FAE in 2017 and my Part 3 CTA exams in 2018. This route has provided me with an incredible opportunity for rapid career progression as Deloitte have given me the chance to have acquired two professional qualifications (Chartered Tax Adviser & Chartered Accountant) within the short period of three years. Furthermore, the excellent exam support provided by the Learning team in Deloitte along with the friendly team environment in which I work on a daily basis will instil self-confidence in my ability to succeed in doing so.

Overall, I am really enjoying my time here and would highly recommend an internship in Tax with Deloitte to anyone from any college background interested in the concept of taxation. The on-the-job training and learning, complemented by the people and team environment in which I work, and the work/life balance offered by Deloitte, makes this firm an exceptional place to work.






Career in Tax

Using my law degree as a tax trainee

Hi, my name is  Paul Cherubuini and I work in Tax Consulting with KPMG.

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I attended Maynooth University and studied Law for four years. Law is a relatively new course in Maynooth, so although there aren’t many fellow Maynooth Law graduates here in KPMG I’m expecting to see more in the years to come.

I had seen KPMG at various graduate recruitment events, so I thought it would be worth my while to apply for a graduate position. What stood out to me from the beginning with KPMG was how friendly the people within the organisation are. When I was offered the position I didn’t hesitate in accepting it.

What I enjoy about working in Tax Consulting is the variety of different tasks I get to do each day. Each client is different, and this variety keeps the work interesting. From preparing tax returns for filing, to dealing with client queries there is always something different to do. The work can be challenging, but you have a good team around you to rely on who are always there to help.

Several skills you gain from studying law are directly transferable to working in Tax Consulting. Firstly you often use legislation so familiarity with working with this is a bonus. Other skills such as research, drafting and writing letters and emails to clients and businesses are also applicable.

It can be challenging to juggle both work and study, however you do have a vast amount of resources at your disposal. All your books are provided, and notes and lecture slides are all online and easily accessed. What makes it easier also is that your colleagues are studying the same material as you, so there is always somebody to bounce your questions off.

In addition to the resources I just mentioned, you also have access to the KPMG Business School. You get to attend a number of useful courses with people both working for KPMG and people who work with the institute. Lecturers and experts come in to teach you the material in a smaller setting, where you can ask questions, do some practical work and receive feedback. An example of this is, the weeklong financial accounting course we did before we came into the office with a lecturer from the Institute.

One of the best things about working here at KPMG is the social aspect. There always seems to be some event on! My intake organised a trip to Galway for a weekend after our induction training, celebrating fellow employees passing exams etc. There are also upcoming events like tag-rugby tournaments and 5-a-side football amongst others, so there’s plenty to get involved in.

Overall I’m really enjoying my time here so far, and would highly recommend it to anyone interested in applying.


Career in Tax, Clodagh Phelan, KPMG

Neuroscientist turned tax trainee!

Hi! My name is Clodagh Phelan and I am a tax trainee in Tax Consulting with KPMG.

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I completed a Bachelor of Neuroscience degree in UCD. I found my undergraduate degree very interesting and challenging however I could not imagine spending the rest of my life working in a research laboratory. After spending hours in a laboratory and months doing my thesis I realised that I would like to pursue a career where I interact with people on a regular basis and utilise my interpersonal and communication skills. Therefore I decided to pursue a career outside the spectrum of Neuroscience. I decided to choose Tax Consulting in KPMG.

The skills that I obtained from my undergraduate degree, such as the ability to work through and analyse complex data, have been invaluable since I started working in the Tax Consulting department.

I had heard many great things about KPMG’s Tax Consulting practice. I felt that a career working in KPMG would allow me to gain an understanding of interesting domestic and international tax issues. I spoke to some people who were working in the Tax Consulting area at a graduate fair. They all stressed the amazing support that the KPMG Business School provided, in terms of day-to-day tax training but especially in preparation for the exams.

I enjoy working in Tax Consulting because I get the opportunity to work with huge clients on a daily basis. I am exposed to dealing with very diverse and broad tax issues in respect of a variety of companies. Every day is a new learning experience. Tax Consulting is very much legislative based and our work involves the application of this legislation to practical and real world business scenarios.

It can be very challenging to manage both work and lectures, however the support provided by KPMG is invaluable. All of the material is online so readily available, and all of the relevant books are provided. I find it comforting that everybody in the office has been in the same position before so there is always good advice available and help at hand.

One of the greatest aspects about working in KPMG is the people. The Tax Consulting department is a young and vibrant place to work and there is a huge social element. There are numerous social outings held during the year such as karaoke on intake night, and the annual Christmas party. My intake also organised a trip to Galway after our induction training. There are also lots of societies and events to get involved in which are great for meeting people in different departments. I have also become involved in one the companies many CSR projects. In December I was involved in organising the tax department’s fundraiser for Irish Cancer Society. We organised a Pink day and a bake sale and raised a lot of money for the charity.

The training complimented by the people I work with along with the work life balance makes KPMG a fantastic company to work for. I would highly recommend KPMG to anybody who is considering a position in KPMG as a Tax Consultant, this company is second to none.

Career in Tax, Emma Strutt

Emma’s journey with EY continues

We last met with Emma as she told us about her summer internship experience with EY.

We catch up with her now as she moves on to their graduate programme.

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At the end of my summer internship I interviewed with a partner and was offered a position in the graduate programme. I accepted this offer as I thoroughly enjoyed my experience as a summer intern and decided that tax was definitely the right place for me.


I came to this decision through discussions with EY employees in the tax department and other students who were also partaking in the internship. Throughout final year in college I was also a brand ambassador for EY, this role allowed me to keep up contact with the firm throughout the college year. One key factor in my decision to return to EY was the exam support. The supports provided include extra classes and a very generous study leave package in order to help students pass on their first attempt.


Another key factor in my decision to come back to EY and more specifically to return to the tax department was the fact that, as I mentioned before, the field of tax is constantly evolving. An example of one such change that is topical at the minute is the OECD Base Erosion and Profit Sharing (BEPS) initiative. This initiative looks at taxing companies in the countries where they have real and physical substance. This makes it a particularly interesting time to be in tax as this initiative will impact many multinational enterprises operating in Ireland.


The area of tax in Ireland is also of particular interest as Ireland has a very attractive corporation tax rate of 12.5% which attracts many MNEs to operate in Ireland. This rate results in those working in tax in Ireland interacting with some of the largest MNEs in Europe and in fact the world.


Upon starting the graduate programme I really appreciated the fact that I had undertaken the summer internship, as I was familiar with the firm and its common processes. From day one of the graduate programme you are given real responsibility over your client list as a primary point of contact. The responsibility that is placed upon you results in improved learning speed and submersion into the tax environment.


My Future?

I am currently enrolled with Chartered Accountants Ireland (CAI) to do my CAP1 exams. After completion of my Chartered Accountant’s qualification I will then go on to enrol with the Irish Tax Institute and complete my Part 2 and Part 3 tax exams. Although it will take some time to become fully qualified, the excellent exam support in EY and the friendly environment will hopefully help me to succeed!

Career in Tax, KPMG

An engineer takes on tax!

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Hi my name is Michael Wendel.

I studied Chemical and Bioprocess Engineering in UCD. I never thought I would end up working in professional services for a company like KPMG.

I had first decided to apply for KPMG while I was working for a technology company, in which I spent two years after graduating. I found out there were people from a variety of disciplines working at KPMG, and so I decided to submit an application.

I had applied for a position in Tax Consulting as I had an interest in that area –  I like to know exactly what taxes I am meant to pay and more importantly not meant to pay. Tax is also universally applicable around the world. As I love to travel and enjoy a diverse life this was perfect for me.

Since I started the graduate programme, I have already learned so much. I came to KPMG with no prior knowledge of accounting, tax or business other than what I had picked up myself from bits and pieces of light reading, but from day one the firm had given us everything we needed to get up to speed.

As you can imagine engineering and accounting / tax don’t have a lot of technical commonalities, however that’s not to say that my degree hasn’t had a positive influence on my work to date. It also goes without saying that the maths element of engineering is a big help when you are dealing with numbers as your day to day job.

When I found out that I also had to go back to college as part of my training I did have a moment of apprehension. Then I looked at the positives, I will have another professional qualification. It is a massive achievement when it is done. I found out that KPMG provide unparalleled assistance to their staff when sitting exams. There are multiple study sessions, an abundance of exam leave and extensive material at your disposal. I am learning so much from the job that I can count that as study in its own right. I quickly found a healthy way to balance work, life and study. The way I see it, it is an investment in yourself.

The office environment I am in is excellent as you share it with a number of likeminded individuals. I have made many friends with people in the office and it has resulted in a new social circle forming in my life.

Career in Tax, Emma Strutt

TCD Graduate shares her summer internship experience

Hi – my name is Emma Strutt and I am a tax trainee in EY Ireland.

I studied Business, Economics and Social Studies in Trinity College Dublin and graduated with a joint honours degree in Business and Economics. Tax seemed like the perfect fit for me as I have had a strong interest in Economics from secondary school and I believed that it would be a good area to apply both my business and economics knowledge. The field of tax is also constantly evolving and no two days are the same.

Summer Internship

 I started my journey with EY as a summer intern in the corporation tax department. What initially attracted me to EY was a talk in Trinity College Dublin about the summer internship programme. The fact that EY is a global firm and has the goal of doubling in size by 2020, were both factors in my decision to apply for a summer internship.

As EY is a globally integrated firm there are many opportunities for travel and new experiences such as the chance to work on the New York tax desk and secondment opportunities to a variety of clients and countries.

The firm is flexible in allowing employees to experience other service offerings. For example, many of my colleagues in corporation tax have assisted with projects in specialised areas such as transfer pricing and research and development tax credit.

I hadn’t previously studied tax in college so at first this seemed daunting to me, but we received ample amounts of on the job training as well as formal education in tax and there is always someone there to help!

As a summer intern I got great experience and insight into the culture and work life at EY. We received significant amounts of training and everyone was willing to help with any question we had which was a great plus.  There were also many organised events which allowed all the interns to get to know each other and the existing EY employees . This greatly contributed to everyone’s enjoyment and we all finished the internship having made some great friends.


Career in Tax, Conferring Ceremony 2016

Conferring Ceremony 2016

Our Annual Conferring Ceremony was held in UCD on 26 November. It was a great night where 238 new CTAs and 61 new Tax Technicians were conferred by our President, Mary Honohan.  It was also an event which recognised the achievement of our prize winners who performed exceptionally well in individual papers and at each Part.  They received awards from both the Irish Tax Institute and various firms for their outstanding performance – congratulations to all!!!



Career in Tax, Mark Darby

From summer intern to tax trainee with EY


Hi! My name is Mark Darby and I am a tax trainee with EY, Ireland.

I started my career in tax and indeed my career with EY as a summer intern – I chose to do my summer internship with EY for a variety of reasons.

Initially what attracted me was the exciting prospect of working in such a globally integrated and fast growing firm.  However what kept my interest, and convinced me to accept the offer, was the people in the firm. I was blown away by the support and guidance offered by every EY employee I met.

I entered the EY Summer Internship Programme with over 70 interns all across Ireland in June 2014, where I worked in the Corporate Tax department.  For twelve weeks the Summer Internship Programme submerges you into the ethos and culture in EY, while offering a taste of the work which graduates engage in.

The entire 12 week programme offered me the opportunity to learn so much and greatly upskill in such a short space of time.  It allowed me to form relationships with colleagues and managers, including partners who would go on to interview me for my graduate position.  Having been part of the Summer Internship Programme greatly helped my case when interviewing at the end of the Internship.  My interview was with a partner who already knew quite a bit about me through my work in tax. Having worked with EY for over twelve weeks, I feel that their understanding of who I am and how I work, was much more comprehensive than what a one hour interview can provide.

Working in tax provides challenges through its dynamism.  New laws and precedents are set everyday worldwide, creating new ways to tackle problems.  Working in tax is the perfect example of how EY remains a first choice for so many companies by remaining at the forefront of the industry through training and educating staff.  We are provided with the resources to educate ourselves about the technical work we do as well as the industries we are working with.  EY’s emphasis on training provides us with a wide array of transferable skills and invaluable knowledge to bring forward into the future.

The world of tax is filled with opportunity.  As tax shapes the country we live in, it is imperative that Ireland’s tax system remains competitive against other countries through innovation.  This creates a vibrant landscape for a Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) to train in.

There are many sub service lines being created by reacting to and predicting trends in the industry.  For example EY’s Research and Development Tax department has been in operation since 2009, continuously creating value for the customer, and it now stands poised and ready for the introduction of the Knowledge Box and other competitive R&D incentives.

Working in tax in EY offers a lot of responsibilities.  We work with global clients and market leaders who directly impact the world we live in.  As a graduate working in tax, it is interesting and engaging to be given clients and to work as their first point of contact for any queries or transactions. This provides us with fantastic insight through working with colleagues from all levels, from Partner to Level One.  EY’s globally integrated organizational structure is mirrored locally with its open plan offices. We are encouraged to ask questions and offer our opinions allowing us to learn vast amounts through our experiences and through interacting with others.

International Intern Leadership Conference (IILC)10505153_10154492146945714_1391638912210414705_o

The EY Summer Internship Programme presents a unique opportunity to interns in the shape of the EY International Intern Leadership Conference. This is a weeklong EY intern event which is held in Disneyworld, Orlando, Florida involving 3,000 EY interns from all over the world, with two being chosen from Ireland.  Our days involved various workshops such as leadership and soft skill training.

The workshops were insightful and relevant, with key speakers teaching us about the ground breaking research that they carried out, to motivational speakers urging us to never lose sight of what makes us, us.  I learned an extraordinary amount from the workshops, but the amount I learned from the other interns themselves cannot be underestimated.

It was not all work however, with plenty of opportunity provided to explore the parks, including Universal Studios and Disneyworld itself. There were also evening dinners and events designed to provide as much entertainment as possible while allowing us to network with our peers from all across the world.  Much like the culture of friendliness and teamwork that I had experienced in Ireland, this culture was represented across all of the nationalities we met, with many friends being made along the way who I still have regular contact with.

The ILC is an incredible showcase of ability from EY, it allows interns to learn from leaders within the firm and network with their peers, encouraging them to be the future leaders of EY.



Career in Tax, Eoghan Fox

Getting the work life balance right in a tax internship with Deloitte

My name is Eoghan Fox and I recently joined the tax department in Deloitte as part of the intern group.

I must admit that on my first day I really didn’t know what to expect. Having recently completed two taxation modules in college, I was eager to see how relevant these would be in the real working world. Starting with so many other interns was daunting but the firm really helped us get to know each other with plenty of social events and training days. I started alongside 6 other interns in my department which made it easier to integrate. We were allocated to a certain number of clients on the first week. I would be responsible for the work on this client and had to liaise with a trainee and director who were also allocated to the client. This was something I had yet to experience in university but enjoyed the sense of responsibility of being allocated to my own clients.

Work life balance is one of the most important elements of any job for me. While the work in the office can be quite intense at times it is very important for me to have time to go to the gym, play golf and really enjoy my summer as much as possible. I find it is essential to have a routine in place especially when working in a Big Four firm. By having a strict routine in place, I find it allows me to get the most out of my day and essentially means I am more productive.

Travel is one of my real passions and I hope to have travelled to every continent by the time I am 30. Last summer I travelled to South East Asia for 7 weeks with four of my college friends. This was genuinely one of the best experiences I have ever had. We travelled to Cambodia, Vietnam and Thailand spending a little over 2 weeks in each country. All in all it was a fantastic experience and I would recommend it to anyone.

Eoghan Fox_headshotEoghan Fox

Career in Tax, Mark Barrow

No day is the same as a tax intern with KPMG!

Hi, my name is Mark Barrow and I am currently studying International Business with French at the University of Limerick. I major in Accounting and Finance, but I also study a wide variety of subjects such as law, economics and politics.

At school I liked the business subjects such as Accounting and Economics, so I always knew that I wanted a career in something like this. My dad is an accountant, so I had the opportunity to work for the summer months in his accountancy practice back home in Ennis. I was exposed to both tax and audit, but I found that I enjoyed working on tax much more than the audit work.

As part of my degree, I had to take part in a work placement programme, and I felt that this was the perfect opportunity for me to see what it was like to work in a Big Four Accountancy firm. When I received the offer of a placement in KPMG, I was fortunate to be assigned to Financial Services Tax.

I’m assigned to a team which works on the Foreign Account Tax Compliance Act (“FATCA”).  FATCA is a new law which has been introduced by the Government of the United States, in which all U.S. Persons who live outside of the U.S. are obliged to report on any foreign bank accounts that they may have. This is a huge project for KPMG, and as a result of my work on this I have been exposed to a variety of work that placements may not have been traditionally assigned to.

I also work on tax compliance work for clients (i.e. managing client’s tax obligations). I mainly work on corporation tax for clients, but I have also been exposed to Capital Gains Tax and Income Tax. I’ve found that there are many advantages to doing a placement in tax – No one client is the same, so I’m always learning more and more each day and the variety of the work means that you’re never bored!

I’ve learnt lots from my placement in tax, but what I will primarily take from my placement is that I know what direction I would like to follow – a career in tax with KPMG!


Career in Tax

Why I chose a tax summer internship with PwC

Hi, my name is David Byrne and I’m going into my final year of Commerce in UCD. Right now I am in my penultimate week of an 8 week long tax internship in PwC and I have thoroughly enjoyed it so far.

Around January of this year I decided I wanted to do an internship over the summer. I was anxious to get some real life experience in an area relevant to my course, so I applied to PwC for an internship. But why tax? I suppose the main reason I choose it was from a conversation I had with a friend of mine who completed an internship in tax the previous year and from this chat I decided that the area of tax appealed to me. Talking to someone who had done an internship already was really helpful and it’s something I would recommend to anyone considering a tax internship.

But I guess if you’re considering an internship in tax what you really want to know is what a tax intern does on a day to day basis. The variety of the tasks I have been given has been brilliant. I haven’t been given any long boring filing jobs and I have been kept busy, so time flies! An example would be yesterday I was working on researching information around a particular section of the TCA 1997 (Taxes Consolidation Act) and today I was working on Target packs for potential clients, so like I said the variety is great.

Not only that but the working environment has been excellent also, everyone has been really helpful and there is a big batch of interns who started with me so it’s nice to know I’m not the only one with no experience

I am looking forward to finishing out my internship and hopefully returning to PwC in the not so distant future.


Career in Tax

A busy tax internship with PwC – with some tag rugby for good measure!

Hi! I am Aisling O’Reilly, and I began my internship at PwC in June, just after completing my second year of Commerce in UCD. I applied to do an internship in the Tax department in PwC for a couple of reasons; I had talked to people currently working in tax as graduates, and I researched online and realised there was a lot of work involving dealing with clients directly- which really interested me. Another aspect that led me to choose tax was the fact that is relevant to every person in Ireland and the rest of the world, and it is constantly changing. This aspect of tax was hugely important in making the decision regarding what area I would like to apply for an internship in.

I am working as part of the HRS department (Human Resource Services), which has an abundance of different functions involving employment tax, global mobility services and people consulting. So far, as part of my work I have completed tax returns for clients who have staff coming to Ireland to work, and leaving Ireland to work in other countries. I have also attended client meetings inside and outside of the office, completed some compliance work and dealt with Revenue. I have loved my time in HRS- before coming to PwC I didn’t realise there was a whole department within tax that was dedicated to people. My internship has helped me decide that this is where I would like to come back to when I finish college.

As well as working, we interns have had a lot of fun over the past 7 weeks! We have been brought to the Leopardstown Races, we went to PwC’s annual BBQ and Tag Rugby event, and next week we are going on a trip to London to experience what PwC’s global network is all about. Along with this, we have participated in a number of workshops and talks (including one in the Tax Institute and another in the Chartered Accountants of Ireland), and also took part in a project involving a pitch to some of PwC’s partners. My experience of doing an internship in PwC has given me an insight into what I could do when I graduate from college, and also what life is like when working in PwC. I would highly recommend the internship to people from all backgrounds, as there’s something here for everyone.


Career in Tax, Katie Woods

Katie, a TCD student shares her summer tax internship experience

I’m going into fourth year in BESS (Business, Economics and Social Science) in Trinity next year, so I thought that now would be a great time to do an internship to get a bit of experience under my belt before I graduate. People wonder why I chose Tax as I had never had the opportunity to study it in college, but I find it interesting as everyone deals with it in their day-to-day life, and the majority of legal decisions have tax implications which means you deal with a huge variety of clients. Tax is an ever changing puzzle, and it is always a challenge getting the best deal for your clients. My first month in KPMG has been quite busy and it has definitely gone a lot quicker than I expected! I mainly deal with income tax, and I have really enjoyed how everyone works as a team. If you are ever stuck on something, no matter how small, there is always someone around and willing to help you.

You definitely learn far more from actually doing a job, than doing a module on it in college. KPMG offer’s lots of training and support as well as giving you ‘real work’ rather than the typical intern work of photocopying and scanning which is great as it not only gives you real experience, but helps you to see if this is a career path that you want to go down.

The main advantage of doing an internship in Tax is that it gives you a real insight into what you would do as a tax accountant, and if you do choose to pursue it, you end up with an extra qualification in Tax when you qualify!

By Katie Woods, Summer intern, KPMG.


Career in Tax, Edward Burke

An Intern’s Story – Edward Burke

I came into the KPMG internship programme having just finished my second year of Accounting & Finance at DCU. As well as giving me an income for the summer, I hoped the internship would give me an insight into the world of finance.

When applying for the internship I elected to work in the tax department. I chose tax for a number of reasons; Firstly because I hoped it would give me plenty of client exposure and allow me to have a hands-on experience and secondly, I was aware that I would be taking a compulsory tax module in college next year so I hoped it would help me get ahead of the pack!

The first month has literally flown by. The first two weeks were very much learning based – there were training days to improve our teamwork skills and I learned lots of new skills, which are important in my daily work, i.e. how to access and use the different tax applications, timesheet requirements etc. I also participated in many online learning courses which helped bring my Word and Excel skills up to scratch.

With the training out of the way I was able to start into the work. I have been working mainly with corporation tax so far, but I will also cover income tax before the end of the summer. I have helped prepare the tax returns for a number of clients. I have found this work very interesting – it has given me an insight into how the Irish tax system actually works and I have learned about many different things such as capital allowances and group relief.

I am delighted that I have been given the opportunity to do this internship over the summer. The practical experience has really helped me improve my accounting and tax knowledge and I feel it will be a big help to me when I return to college. Aside from that, the internship has allowed me to meet so many great new friends, both fellow interns and permanent staff members. I have been extremely lucky to work alongside so many experienced professionals and there is so much I can learn from them in terms of how they go about their work and their handling of different situations. The first month of the internship has delivered so much and I am really looking forward to the rest of the summer.

For more information about the AITI Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) qualification or to view more profiles of tax professionals, please visit

By Edward Burke, Summer Intern, KPMG Dublin

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Aileen Joyce, Career in Tax

So far in Canada…

Hi, I’m Aileen Joyce and I work as an AITI Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) with KPMG.

While working in the VAT department at KPMG Dublin, I was given the opportunity to work with colleagues across the KPMG network.  I was always interested in the similarities and differences between Irish and foreign VAT law. Similarly, I had always wanted to live and work abroad and so before I sat my Part 3 AITI Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) exams I requested a secondment abroad.

KPMG have a supportive approach towards global secondments and I was offered a year abroad with KPMG Toronto. The move across the water was hassle free, as flights, visas, pick up and temporary accommodation had all been arranged by KPMG Toronto prior to my departure, and I was assisted by a relocation company in opening my bank account and finding apartment – I cannot stress how easy this assistance made the move.

As for my first experience of Canadian sales tax (GST), although the concepts and operation of the VAT and GST systems are similar, the legislation and application of the tax are different. However, the skills I developed during my training in Dublin and from completing the AITI Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) qualification made the transition much easier.

From the get go I was thrown into the nitty gritty of GST/HST – initially my area of focus has been GST/HST compliance for financial institutions which has given me the opportunity to grasp the significant differences between Irish and Canadian indirect tax returns (there’s much more than 6 boxes to be completed in Canada) while seeing how financial services are treated from an indirect tax perspective outside Ireland and the EU. From time to time, I get to work within the comfort zone as a first point of contact in addressing EU VAT queries raised by clients, and when necessary referring more complex local VAT issues to the appropriate EU KPMG office, which has allowed me to develop new contacts within the global KPMG network.

In the next few months I’m looking forward to new work assignments, some travel and warmer weather!! (It’s ranged between 7 degrees to -40 degrees since I’ve been here – but that’s part of the experience!!).

For more information about the AITI Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) qualification or to view more profiles of tax professionals, please visit

By Aileen Joyce, Tax Adviser, KPMG Toronto

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