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Interview with Hong Jin Hong, Senior 2

Jin Hong is a Senior Associate in the Assurance department at Foo Kon Tan LLP. She has been with the firm for 2years now.

Please share more about the company you were seconded to and your role while you were there.

I was seconded to HLB Mann Judd (Melbourne), a member firm of the HLB Mann Judd Australasian Association consisting of 9 member firms and 2 representative firms. I was seconded the role as an external auditor mainly involved in the audit of government entities, not-for-profit organisation as well as private companies. 

What was 1 thing that you found the most difficult to adapt when you first arrived?

The greatest challenge would be adapting to the frequent changes in weather, especially during the winter season. 

How would you describe the work culture in Australia vis-à-vis that of Singapore?

In Australia, they have a more personal approach when communicating with respective clients. One more significant difference is that in HLB Mann Judd, a monthly firm meeting is being held to keep all staff in the loop on the company’s current challenges and general direction. This not only improves the relationship between staffs across different departments, but it is also where we can innovate and grow together as one. Through these communications, I feel more engaged as a stakeholder in the team. 

In your view, what are the 2 most memorable moments during your secondment stint?

People there in general, are especially friendly which makes me feel welcomed wherever I go. 

How do you think this secondment was value-added to your job?

That I was able to gain more knowledge on the use of caseware application, using different sampling methods, different type of work flow, as well as different ways to monitor and manage client portfolios. I also gained new experiences and exposure in auditing different industries which includes government entities, as well as not-for-profit organisations. 

What is one piece of advice you would give to the next batch of secondees?

Keep an open mind as you step out of your comfort zone and embark on a  journey filled with new insights and exposure. Be thankful that you are given this opportunity to explore the different work culture as well as living standards.

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