Person of the Year Awards

Accounting Students Experience Immersion into World of Business

The gala for the first Person of the Year Awards was held on May 9, 2019. This initiative, launched in collaboration with Concordia University’s John Molson School of Business (JMSB), actively contributes to the development of local avant-garde businesses.

As part of this recognition process, we also wanted to prepare the next generation by encouraging the emergence of the talent of tomorrow. As a result, three JMSB students were invited to take part in a project led by Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton’s Operio and Catallaxy. Other scholars will have the chance to experiment such an immersion in 2020. In the meantime, let’s revisit the 2019 edition.

Immersion at Catallaxy

Tuesday, June 18, 2019, 9:30 a.m.: Alex Tzozis, Adnan Chaudhry and Wenjing Zhou arrive at the Catallaxy offices located on De La Gauchetière Street in Montréal.

Catallaxy General Manager Michel Besner welcomes them to what will be a full day of immersion into Catallaxy’s technological universe – an enriching experience that will shed some light on an exciting, yet little-known field: blockchain and cryptocurrencies.

The three students attend presentations and take part in certain meetings with clients from the other side of the world.

Between two meetings, they meet several members of the Catallaxy team. Discussions ensue. Alternating between French and English, they talk about cryptocurrencies and its challenges.

Adnan is excited: “I’m very passionate about this new technology. I can’t wait to learn more about cryptocurrencies and blockchain and how they will change the CPA profession in the future.”

Michel Besner explains: “Preparing tomorrow’s professionals for this reality by making them aware of technological advances such as process automation and data exchange, which will have an impact on their profession, is an excellent initiative. For Catallaxy, this is part of our DNA, since we’re regularly in contact with young talent in the industry through the many gatherings within the blockchain community.”

Introduction to digital transformation

On their second day, the three students were invited to Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton offices. After blockchain, it’s time for transformation 4.0, artificial intelligence and Operio. They attend several presentations and participate in a meeting of the digital consulting services team and their representatives.

Étudiants Concordia - RCGT

Fascinated by the multitude of services and expertise offered by the Québec firm, Alex tells me: “This experience has shown me a lot about what Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton has to offer on career development opportunities; it’s incredible, the business opportunities and the means implemented to help companies be more competitive on the market.”

Adnan couldn’t have hoped for a better experience: “To have the opportunity to talk to professionals who have followed the same path as I have is absolutely incredible – they’ve given me valuable advice on how to build my career. For me, I’ve had an unbelievable experience at Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton.”

Wenjing says: “We’re studying to become accountants and, in light of today’s presentations and our meetings with experts, it’s clear that the profession will evolve with the use of new technological tools. Whether with Operio and its online platform or artificial intelligence, our role will change and focus more on consulting. All of the experts here have a smile on their faces; they learn from each other, help each other and excel. It’s very inspiring to see this synergy within a firm like Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton.”

Alex feels the same way: “Technology, as we know, is an integral part of our daily lives, but it’s interesting to discover how it will change the accounting profession in the years to come. Moreover, it’s incredible to see the collaboration that exists here between the various experts. From consultants to developers to public accountants, they all work together to meet clients’ needs and improve their expertise.”

Raymond Chabot Grant Thornton is committed to contributing to the development of professionals by offering them tangible experiences within its innovative practices in the marketplace. In addition to having the best experts in the industry, now, more than ever, the firm is looking to the future by preparing the talent of tomorrow.

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