Tax trainees – What do we do?

Our Tax trainees and advisors give you a peek at their everyday life within EY!

Indirect Tax

As global trade is in an age of disruption, our Indirect Tax team works in an international and transforming environment. Our trainees grow their expertise in the complex questions of value-added taxation (VAT), excise duties and customs duties. Your own enthusiasm and curiosity are the keys for success: there is always something new to learn in the world of indirect taxation!

Our purpose is to assist our clients to identify risk areas and manage indirect taxes correctly and effectively. As an Indirect Tax trainee, you are teamed up with our specialists and provide your assistance in our client engagements. During my traineeship, I participated in client meetings, prepared documents and presentations, provided administrative assistance and conducted research from legal data bases. Much of the aforementioned tasks are performed independently in the specialist’s supervision. As many of our clients are international, fluency in English is an important asset in our work.

Our teamwork is based on flexibility and readiness to help each other. When you start working here, you will have much to discover, but you won’t be alone with your questions – your team is always there to guide you.

Otto Leppänen (left), Max Nyberg (right)
Tax Trainee
Global Compliance and Reporting

Our names are Max Nyberg and Otto Leppänen. We have been part of the Global Compliance and Reporting team at the Helsinki Office. Within the GCR team, Max was a member of the ACR/BTC team and Otto has been working under GS (Global Services).

Max: As a Trainee in the ACR/BTC team, I prepared various kinds of annual and monthly reporting for both multinational and local companies. With the help of my team, I was responsible of preparing Income Tax Returns, Statutory Reports and other reports required by law. I also assisted with the bookkeeping of several clients.

As a trainee in the GCR team, I developed my skills and knowledge within accounting policies and compliance. From working closely with international colleagues and clients on intense projects, I also developed my communication and teamwork skills. To be successful as a trainee, I would highly recommend previous experience in the fields of accounting and taxation as well as a good understanding of financial reporting. Proficiency in English is also important, as you will also have daily contact with cross-border clients.

Otto: Our GS team works in a coordinative role as a central team in various global tax compliance engagements for Finnish companies. Every one of our engagements is unique, like our clients, but in common for all of them is a global working environment – for example our largest engagement covers currently about 90 countries. Our GS team has obviously a very strong role between our clients and EY internal teams around the world to keep the engagements moving forward.

It was very exciting to be a part of our top consultant team. My trainee period at EY was important for me as my first step in the consulting world and also strengthened key skills. Working in the GS team requires many essential working skills: organizing skills, prioritizing skills, delegating, working in a team… MS Office should already be a familiar environment to succeed in the work. Having bookkeeping and/or taxation related experience beforehand helps but is not obligatory. Working proficiency in English is a must as all the communication is in English.

Oona Aaltonen
Tax Trainee
People Advisory Services

There is the old saying “there are no two days the same in consultancy” and that holds truth in reality. A day of a PAS tax trainee consists of various work tasks, meetings with our team members and assisting our clients with different tax issues. Great thing about being a PAS tax trainee is that every day is different, and you get challenge and develop yourself daily. As a PAS trainee you are guaranteed to have a steep learning curve but also offered a flexibility in case you need to attend your studies on the side.

I personally worked around 3 days a week and attended my lectures at Turku School of Economics around 2 times a week. At EY we have flexible working hours, but I usually liked to go work early around 7-8 am. My usual workday started by having my morning coffee while going through my emails and seeing if there is anything that needed acting on. At 10:15 we have our daily call with our client engagement team, after which we usually grabbed lunch. Throughout the day, there are meetings and arising tax issues we solved together with my colleagues. We have a great team of talented tax professionals who will always help you should you need it. At 2 pm all the PAS trainees get together for a coffee break to discuss the events of the day. Depending on the day I usually left work around 4-6 pm. Each morning, I woke up anticipating the day to be the same, but there were and are always new challenges and opportunities ahead. 

Teemu Nilosaari

Teemu Nilosaari
Tax Advisor
Business Tax Services 

EY Finland’s Business Tax Services (BTS) team focuses on advising businesses and wealthy individuals on domestic tax matters. BTS has a deep knowledge of the different areas of business taxation and advises businesses in optimizing and enhancing the efficiency of their tax structures and transactions. The consulting services provided by BTS include among others optimizing the company structures for cash flow purposes, analyzing the tax consequences of companies’ tax structures and transactions as well as tackling questions concerning multinational businesses’ taxation in Finland. The BTS team also assists businesses on matters concerning tax policy, controversy and advises on complying with the changing tax legislation landscape. In addition to more traditional business tax issues, BTS assists also in regard to among others transfer tax, agriculture and forestry tax and real estate tax issues.

The nature of BTS’s engagements varies heavily. The traditional consulting projects emphasize deep knowledge of applicable tax matters and creative analysis for finding the optimal solution from a for instance tax cash flow perspective. On the other hand, in engagements where BTS advises on e.g. the rectification of taxes, argumentation skills are required, as well as an understanding of companies’ business strategies. Typically, all these overlapping skills are utilized to provide comprehensive tax advice for the client. Furthermore, all of the office tools are in heavy use and some skills in both Excel and Power Point are extremely useful.

The most important skill is, however, a thorough interest towards tax matters, both from a legal and business perspective. To create the most complete team of tax professionals, BTS consists of both law and business school graduates. BTS team aspires to work in a both individual and cooperative environment and every BTS team member has individual projects as well as projects together with his or her colleagues. 

Linda Sydänmaanlakka
Tax Trainee
International Tax and Transaction Services

EY Finland’s International Tax and Transaction Services (ITTS) team consists of tax professionals with expertise in the fields of transfer pricing and international tax services (“ITS”) as well as tax issues relating to corporate transactions (“TT”). As a trainee in the ITS team, you will get to learn about international taxation and transfer pricing alongside brilliant and accomplished colleagues.

Our team provides consulting services in various transfer pricing related issues from designing transfer pricing models and compiling obligatory documentation to conducting benchmark studies and assisting clients with transfer pricing audit’s and controversies. Issues relating to core international taxation provide our team with engagements which require expertise e.g. in withholding taxes, permanent establishments and tax structuring.

The path of learning begins within the very first days of a trainee period. Personally, I felt included in our team and its engagements from the day one; Being a trainee in the ITS team means getting valuable hands-on experience from interesting and challenging projects throughout your trainee period. In addition to gaining knowledge on the substance of international tax and transfer pricing, you will obtain many essential intrapersonal and time management skills required in building a successful career for the future.

As to what we expect from our trainees, above all is the right mentality i.e. the eagerness and willingness to learn. Basic understanding in the principles of international taxation will ease the beginning of your trainee period, but mostly knowledge required in the projects of our team you will gain along the way. Good IT skills as well as strong command of English are necessary.

Sofia Korvenmäki (left)
Tax Trainee
International Tax and Transaction Services

During my trainee period I did varying tasks related to corporate transactions. As a trainee I e.g. assisted with tax due diligence and tax structuring projects and written applications to tax authorities. Every working day and every project were different and challenging, which I found very interesting. Working as a trainee I was able to apply the knowledge and skills that I learned at the university in practice in my daily work and I learned a lot of new things about taxation and transactions.

I would say that the most important thing to succeed as a trainee is to have an open-minded and active attitude and willingness to learn new things. Of course, it is helpful to have knowledge about taxation and some understanding of the figures in financial statements, but this is not mandatory, because as a trainee you learn a lot of these things by doing the work in practice. It is important to have good spoken and written skills in English, because we do a lot of international projects. Additionally, I think that it is important to know how to use MS Office -programs, because these are in daily use in our work. Of course, there are many other skills too that are useful to know, but I think that above all with good attitude you get far.

Interested in becoming our colleague? Apply here!



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