Vercity Career Profile – Jemma Spinks
Can you tell us a little about your journey to Vercity?
After graduating from university in 2012, my career in accountancy began at a local practice as a trainee accountant. Alongside work, I studied for the ACCA qualification and became fully qualified in 2016. Shortly after, I decided it was time for a new challenge and started at Vercity as a Management accountant in July 2017. I’ve been here in various roles since.
What has been your experience at Vercity?
In 2018, when a Financial Controller position became available, I jumped at the opportunity to lead a team of 8, including management accountants and finance assistants. Later that year, the decision was made to merge the projects I worked on with health projects, and my team doubled in size overnight.
This, to date, is by far the most rewarding role in my career. I enjoy supporting members of my team, as they take advantage of opportunities to develop their skills and careers at Vercity as I did. At the 2021 Vercity Annual Conference, I received a Values award for ‘Integrity’. Being nominated by members of my team was a real honour and a massive achievement for me in this role.
Last year, to further my experience, I took on some Finance manager responsibility to discover one of the final pieces of the finance puzzle at Vercity. This has been an excellent opportunity to gain exposure to model updates and build relationships with the board, funders, authorities, and the operational site teams based on projects.
I have also become part of the new Systems Implementation team involved in transitioning our finance accounting system to a cloud-based system we are implementing later this year. This will certainly keep me busy until October when I’ll be heading off on maternity leave for a completely new challenge!
How has your experience evolved throughout your time in the workplace?
From the start, my experience at Vercity has always been positive and supportive. The finance team is so welcoming and has a great office atmosphere. Over the years, I’ve built strong relationships with colleagues and had lots of fun at various social events. I am fortunate that by moving roles, I’ve gotten to know and work with many Vercity employees who have contributed to my experience and the roots I have laid here.
With Covid and the introduction of home working, these foundations proved invaluable for maintaining good communication (and ultimately helped me stay sane). The introduction of Teams and video calling helped with the transition, and it’s now even easier to stay connected and feel part of the organisation, even remotely. However, I am still a big advocate of regular trips to the pub for lunch with colleagues!
Can you tell us about any mentors who have supported you in your career and/or life?
One of the main things that keep me motivated in my career has been roles with clear progression routes and exposure to what more senior roles entail. Having a mentor or just somebody more senior that supports or encourages your growth has always been particularly important to me.
As a new management accountant at Vercity, one of my first Finance managers was Kate Helm. Kate and I worked well together on the Blackburn and Pinderfields hospital projects, and there was always something to keep us on our toes. Kate is a font of all knowledge about PFI, Accounting, Audit, almost anything really. Through her, I gained my first real insight into the Finance manager role at Vercity. It’s her continued support over the years which made me take the leap into the role myself last year. She supported me as Head of Finance on my first couple of projects as Finance Manager.
What do you enjoy outside of work?
Outside of work, I love to travel! We all need to fall off the radar and escape reality every once in a while. I love exploring new places, experiencing different cultures and learning about myself and others along the way. In the last 10 years I’ve travelled to over 30 different countries and still have a long bucket list of places to work my way through!
Careers at Vercity
At Vercity, we encourage professional development and recruit for a wide range of roles across the UK, Canada and North America. Our workforce is diverse, we offer great benefits, flexible working and equal opportunities for talented individuals at all levels across a variety of disciplines.