Over the last few weeks, three members of the team at RfM Preston have celebrated big work milestones, putting in an impressive 40 years of service between them. We asked Diane, Richard and Alison to tell us about how life at RfM has changed over their time at the practice.
Diane Croasdale, Accounts Assistant – 20 years at RfM Preston
Diane started work at the practice in Leyland in July 1998 as a receptionist and administrator. After several years in the role, the opportunity arose for Diane to realise her ambition to become an accounting technician. RfM is committed to supporting its staff to achieve their professional and personal goals and made it possible for Diane to complete the 3-year AAT course alongside her job on reception.
Perhaps the biggest of the many changes Diane has seen in the last 20 years is the move towards technology and cloud-based accounting software.
“Many of our clients now use Xero cloud accounting software for their financial administration,” explains Diane. “The best thing about using an online package is that the client and their advisor can both log in at the same time to see the accounts in real time. Learning to use the software was challenging at first as there is so much you can do with it. My role is much more skilled now but I am well prepared for the future of accounting.”
Whilst Diane enjoys her work and appreciates the career support she receives, her reasons for staying at RfM are more personal. “The office is local to home and I really like the people I work with. I’ve made good friendships… I even met my husband here. I am also grateful for how understanding and flexible they are to me and the other parents who work here. It really makes a difference.”
Richard Carter, Tax Senior – 10 years at RfM Preston
Richard has been a key member of the tax department at RfM Preston for the last 10 years. However, he actually has 12 years of RfM service under his belt as he also worked at the practice a little earlier in his career.
Before moving into private practice, Richard spent many years working for the Inland Revenue so you can rely on him to answer any tax-related query. He is responsible for preparing personal and corporate tax returns at the practice and it’s usually Richard’s job to tell clients how much tax they will have to pay.
Richard also values the benefits of working at a smaller practice, close to home. “I can walk to work so you definitely can’t beat the commute! The staff here are friendly and down to earth and many of the clients are also local businesses. I have been dealing with many of the same faces throughout the time I’ve been at RfM.”
Alison Winstanley, Administrator and Marketing Assistant – 10 years at RfM Preston
Alison joined the team to work on reception in May 2008. Thanks to her exceptional organisational skills, her role has grown over the years to include business administration tasks and company secretarial duties. She has also been providing invaluable support to the marketing team since 2017.
Alison has seen the practice return to being independent and re-brand as RfM. “The brand and the practice has changed a lot since it became RfM. I like the personality that we have – we want to show that accounting and accountants are not boring or stuffy. I’ve learned a lot since joining RfM, especially since being involved with marketing. No two days are ever the same!”
Interested in changing jobs, or even a new career? Learn more about career opportunities at RfM here.