Interview with a Foundation Degree student

23 February 2010

What is your career background?

I started my career at 16 working for a large tyre firm and stayed there for five years. I fancied a change from office work and went into the hospitality business. After a few years, I moved to London working for a large hotel chain. On myreturn, I wanted to have more of a career outlook so Isigned up at my local college for an A-level, carried on to get a BTEC in computing and IT and started my career againfor a local software company.

After 12 months, I wanted more than general administration and accounts work so when the opportunity became available to work for a payrollbureau company I jumped at the chance. I was there for seven years but felt the need to move on to a larger company offering more career choices and options. I moved to a global corporation and after a year with the company,the opportunity arose for me to study for an CIPP qualification. I jumped at the chance, as it was something I had wanted to do for a while. Here I am in my 3rd year looking to graduate in July and go to the Barbican in London in October with my colleagues who have completed the course along side me.

What are your reasons for obtaining a payroll qualification?

I have wanted to do the CIPP qualification for a number of years and having been given the opportunity to do the course two years ago, I didn’t hesitate. It is a well-recognised qualification within the profession I have chosen. Gaining this qualification will widen my career choice and prospects.

What do you enjoy most about your studies?

I like the research aspect that goes into doing the assignments, building on my existing knowledge and expanding it.

What are the main challenges?

Finding the time to do each subject justice can be tricky but worthwhile. The other challenge is ensuring all assignments are completed – there are more to complete within the revised CIPP qualification than there were in the earlier IPPM qualification. This has advantages; you are learning so much more about all aspects of the business, which are not necessarily relevant to payroll.

What do you think are the benefits of getting a payroll qualification?

I think the main benefits for gaining this qualification is that it is one that payroll professionals recognise everywhere. It shows I am committed in following my career path and over time, it will allow more opportunities for promotions to become available

What advice would you give to someone who is considering doing a payroll qualification?

I think people who are considering doing a payroll qualification should ensure they have the dedication to complete the course. It is a lot of hard work, but very rewarding, each assignment you get back inspires you to continue your hard work for the next one.

In what ways have your studies brought about a change in your perception of your role and that of the payroll?

It has helped build my confidence and given me a broader knowledge in all aspects of payroll not just the day-to-day processing.

Click here for more information on the CIPP's payroll qualifications.