From Central Belt to Middle East and back again

Whether you want to remain in practice or do a stint in industry, work internationally or strengthen locally, if you’re able to adapt the opportunities are endless. Here, David Wark tell us about his career as a qualified tax accountant and what he’s learned along the way.

David Wark

David Wark 2

Whether you want to remain in practice or do a stint in industry, work internationally or strengthen locally, if you’re able to adapt the opportunities are endless. Here, David Wark tell us about his career as a qualified tax accountant and what he’s learned along the way.

First of all, what does your job involve?

 “I’m a Transfer Pricing Manager in our UK & Ireland Tax practice, which involves understanding the client’s business including where key decisions, where value is created and where profit should be attributed/taxed. Our work sees us partner with clients to build, manage, document, review and defend their transfer pricing policies and processes.”

What have been the key points of your career so far?

 “Moving from a local, mid-tier firm in home-town Glasgow to join EY’s Bahrain firm. Then, after a few years with Gulf Air, I moved back to Glasgow and re-joined EY. I’m now part of a newly-created Scotland Transfer Pricing team - it’s really exciting to be part of something new and growing.”

What’s been the best thing about your job?

 “Having such a talented team around me – not just in tax but across the business – makes my life so much easier and is inspiring on a day to day basis. It’s great to be a part of a team of exceptional individuals and feel genuinely supported in everything I do.”

Proudest moment so far?

 “I was the first person in my family to go to university, so taking that one step further achieving my CA qualification remains to this day one of my proudest moments. It provides credibility in the market and is a mark of considerable focus, resilience and dedication. Being a part of the CA community has been important to me throughout my career.”

What’s been exceptional about the development and progression opportunities you’ve had with EY?

“When I landed in the Middle East, I had my CA, but I had zero international experience or understanding of the requirements of that market. It would’ve been easy for EY to view that as a negative. Instead, I was given extensive training and access to specialists on the ground who could advise and support me day to day. I will always be grateful for the commitment of the Partner in Bahrain to help me acclimatise and develop.”

What’s your next challenge?

 “I look forward to being involved in the development of Scotland’s dedicated Transfer Pricing team. Delivering specialised services to our clients in Scotland in an evolving team is going to be fun, challenging and rewarding.”

Tell us about a funny or memorable moment in your career…

David: “I was asked to present at an event for the British Trade Office in Al Khobar, Saudi Arabia. I thought it would be a fairly informal presentation, only to learn that the tickets had completely sold out. I remember being chuffed that so many had turned out to hear me speak. It turned out that they had also turned up for the evening dinner, and I was just the final hurdle!”

Final piece of advice for qualified accountants aspiring to go down the same career path as you?

 “Decide what you want from your career, what inspires you personally, and go after it. A CA can take you around the world, if that’s what you want.”

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