Autumn seems to be a season you either love or hate. Summer has ended and soon it will only be light for part of the day at work. Some people start feeling SAD, some are delighted that rugby and football are back in full swing and coffee shops are advertising the autumnal favourite - pumpkin spice latte.
For businesses, September is like an alternative New Year, with the opportunity for new beginnings. And, like 1 January, it seems to come around ever more quickly as each year passes.
September at RGL in the UK means our new intake of trainee forensic accountants join the firm. This is an exciting time for them and for us. This year, we have welcomed a group from a wide variety of backgrounds. From an Oxford graduate who previously worked in the police service for several years, to an archaeology graduate who worked for some time as an insolvency administrator and our first ever non-graduate trainee. She is on a five year programme via the AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) and ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England & Wales) graduate programme. It is wonderful that there are so many options open to people today who wish to train as a forensic accountant - in my day, you had to be an auditor first, but not anymore.
As our new intake join, so last year's new joiners step up. Inevitably, they look back on what they have achieved and it is often only through the lens of the new recruits joining that the extent of the knowledge they have gained in the last year really hits home. Those entering their third year have either passed all their exams already or can see the end of the exams in sight, and have continued to build on their experience. Finally, we have our "graduates" who have completed their three year training contract and are ready to apply to become Chartered Accountants. It is well deserved recognition of the hard work in passing their exams at the same time as working to build their technical experience.
September also sees the new term in the Courts in England & Wales. As a result, we have imminent Court deadlines on our litigation matters for reports and meetings with opposing experts. Additionally, we are seeing a number of matters where our input is needed in advance of settlement discussions via Joint Settlement Meetings or Mediation.
Autumn is therefore a busy time at RGL. The Christmas festivities will soon be upon us, by which time the shortest day will have passed and the days will start getting longer again. We will then be heading inextricably towards the Spring Equinox, when our search for next year's new forensic accounting trainees will begin in earnest.