11/21/13

Good morning all,

I've spent a lot of time on this site, and asked quite a few questions myself, so I figured I'd do my part to give back by answering any questions you might have about corporate finance or fldps in general.

A little about myself: 2nd yr FLDP (1.5 yrs in) at a F500 in Chicago. I'm currently at the end of my 2nd of 3 rotations.

My plan is to try to end up in a FP&A or operations finance role around graduating the program in May, and then work a few yrs before pursuing an MBA.

Comments (108)

In reply to TwoThrones
Best Response
11/20/13

TwoThrones:

Thanks for doing this big man. Do you do anything other than forecasting, budgeting, variance analysis, and billing?

No problem.

I don't do any budgeting or billing. I doubt you'll find FLDPs doing billing, but I may be wrong. At the plant level we have clerks responsible for AR & AP. For me personally, the budgeting is handled by the Controller and the department heads.

Some of the things I regularly do at the plant include: forecasting, variance analysis, consolidations/roll-ups, accounting (JEs, acct recs, etc), cost analysis, margin analysis, and other ad hoc projects. Our accounting manager left this summer and has yet to be replaced, so I have picked up most of her responsibilities as well.

My projects largely revolve around showing financial metrics in different presentations for management, creating new reports to track different metrics, etc. I recently just created an entirely new financial package for our plant financials/results.

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11/20/13

Thanks for doing this big man. Do you do anything other than forecasting, budgeting, variance analysis, and billing?

11/20/13

Do you enjoy it? Is it intellectually engaging?

In reply to thurnis haley
11/20/13

Thurnis Haley:

Do you enjoy it? Is it intellectually engaging?

The answer is...it depends/sometimes. It largely depends on the role you have, who you work with, and the projects you get. I'm not a big accounting fan so it's been alright so far. I have really enjoyed some of the finance projects I have worked on here at the plant. One of my issues so far has been down time during the day. I'm the kind of person who likes to be busy the entire day, because then it flies by. So yes sometimes you're doing grunt work, sometimes you get lucky and get to tackle more engaging projects. It's a mixed bag really.

11/20/13
In reply to GoIllini
11/20/13

great, i'll get this on the homepage now, thanks for doing it!

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In reply to AndyLouis
11/20/13

AndyLouis:

great, i'll get this on the homepage now, thanks for doing it!

Thanks I really appreciate it!

11/20/13

Awesome, thanks for doing this! Does your company hire non-FLDPs? If so, is your career trajectory more promising than "normal" analysts?

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

11/20/13

Thanks for this! Does your company have a corporate strategy rotation? What's your exposure like to divisions of the company you don't rotate through?

11/20/13

Thanks for doing this, Illini. Couple questions:

1. Do you think people who come in from the outside at the Manager-level are viewed differently than people who make Manager after going through the FDLP?
2. How important does your company view MBA when determining promotions at the Manager and higher levels? Would you say there is a ceiling for non-MBAs, even for high performers?
3. What kind of hours do you work? What about your Manager / Directors?
4. What do you dislike most about your FLDP as well as your company?
5. What kind of interview questions did you get for your FLDP? Do you know what kind of questions they ask for more experienced positions?
6. Can you give an estimate of comp #s (and bonus) for the various levels? (eg FA--> SFA --> Mgr --> etc)

In reply to D M
11/20/13

D M:

Awesome, thanks for doing this! Does your company hire non-FLDPs? If so, is your career trajectory more promising than "normal" analysts?

For entry level? As of right now not really...right now they are trying to stock the entry level talent with almost exclusively FLDP hires. There have been some in the past, but since hiring is limited right now it's been almost 100% FLDPs getting hired.

However, since this is a new change, the majority of the finance/accounting folk are still not former FLDPs. I'd say in general the career trajectory is more promising, given that you have upper management supporting the program and allocating resources towards it. I also think you get more a lot more exposure and your name gets out there more as an FLDP so more people know of you.

In reply to thoughtpolice
11/20/13

thoughtpolice:

Thanks for this! Does your company have a corporate strategy rotation? What's your exposure like to divisions of the company you don't rotate through?

As of right now they don't. There has been restructuring of the strategy group just this past month, so it's possible that there may be one in the future. Strategy is definitely something I have a strong interest in myself.

A lot of our exposure to non-rotation groups come from talking to people who have exposure. This includes your managers, former FLDPs, FLDPs in those current rotations, etc. We do yearly presentations as FLDPs on our work as well so that the rest of the FLDPs and managers of other groups know what everything is doing.

In reply to Poff
11/20/13

Poff:

Thanks for doing this, Illini. Couple questions:

1. Do you think people who come in from the outside at the Manager-level are viewed differently than people who make Manager after going through the FDLP?

2. How important does your company view MBA when determining promotions at the Manager and higher levels? Would you say there is a ceiling for non-MBAs, even for high performers?

3. What kind of hours do you work? What about your Manager / Directors?

4. What do you dislike most about your FLDP as well as your company?

5. What kind of interview questions did you get for your FLDP? Do you know what kind of questions they ask for more experienced positions?

6. Can you give an estimate of comp #s (and bonus) for the various levels? (eg FA--> SFA --> Mgr --> etc)

1. Not necessarily. It just depends how good you are as networking. To move up from the manager level you need to have some strong connections pulling for you, while continuing to be a high performer. The advantage that former FLDPs have is that they know more people, probably have more people pulling for them, etc. If you come in from the outside and are a high performer & good at networking you won't be at much of a disadvantage once you get established. You can't expect to hit the ground killing it right away though.

2. I'm not sure if there is any sort of ceiling, but it seems that most, if not all, of upper-level mgmt have one. The way it works in my company is that an MBA means you need less years of experience to be eligible for certain positions. For example, an internal job posting might say 5 yrs experience or MBA and 3 yrs of experience required. In my company a CPA or MBA are often preferred for roles starting at manager and above.

3. I generally work 45-55 hours a week, just depending on the week. In general, you don't necessarily work more at higher levels. (excluding c-level) I'd say most managers & directors work 50-55 hrs a week in finance at my company. It's usually more lax in summer, around holidays, etc. It's often expected that you work the hours that your group/manager works.

4. Company as a whole hasn't been performing well recently. We'll see how this shapes out in the near future. For the program, I wish we had a strategy rotation.

5. Mostly questions to assess your fit and to hear more about your experiences. Also had basic accounting questions, NWC case, and a basic excel test. I don't, sorry.

7. Some rough estimates (Highly variable past manager due to bonus)
FLDP (50-60k)(10%) ->FA (60-70k)(10%) -> SFA (65-90k)(15%) -> Manager/Controller (80-130k)(15/20%) -> Director (130-250k)(25%)-> VP (200-400K) -> SVP (400k+) -> CFO(800K+)

11/20/13
In reply to Poff
11/20/13

Poff:

Thanks, GoIllini.

No problem. Let me know if you have any other questions.

11/20/13

What's the career landscape look like for FLDPers at the MBA level? And any ex Big 4 in your different divisions? That's where i'm at now, but hoping to go the MBA to FLDP route in the future.

In reply to romborama
11/20/13

There are a lot fewer FLDPs at the MBA level. If you're talking career trajectory, it's good as long as you perform. Getting into a post-MBA FLDP depends on the company (as to which schools they recruit from). Generally they recruit from top regional and top national schools.

EDIT: GoIllini might have some more insight, especially if you give him some more detail on that question. That's just generally what I've seen while looking at UG FLDPs.

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

11/21/13

Quick question, how come everyone that went to UIUC puts Illini in their username? I can think of at least two other certified users that have done this. Is that a thing? The only other school I see this for is Harvard. Thanks.

Sometimes I go about in pity for myself, and all the while a great wind carries me across the sky
In reply to Going Concern
11/21/13

Working on that brand rec fo sho

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

11/21/13

Did you end up taking a South America rotation or will be? How do you plan on building a "story" around corporate finance role since corp fin. is not as strong as IB/consulting for MBA. If there is anything outside of work that you do and is willing to share that'd be great.

In reply to romborama
11/21/13

romborama:

What's the career landscape look like for FLDPers at the MBA level? And any ex Big 4 in your different divisions? That's where i'm at now, but hoping to go the MBA to FLDP route in the future.

My company doesn't have a FLDP for MBAs so I can't really help you with this. I have done some research into companies that do, and it looks like many of them look for people with 3-6 years experience in a previous finance/acctg landscape, and have you exiting into a business manager role.

Yes there are a good amount of former Big 4 at my company. Most of them are on the accounting side of things, but if you went Big 4 -> MBA -> corp fin I would expect you to not be pigeonholed in accounting. The Director I'm going to be working under in January (and have worked under before) worked in an accounting role for about 5 years before transitioning to a divisional FP&A group.

In reply to Going Concern
11/21/13

Going Concern:

Quick question, how come everyone that went to UIUC puts Illini in their username? I can think of at least two other certified users that have done this. Is that a thing? The only other school I see this for is Harvard. Thanks.

Because we're always straight repping the Fighting Illini...

In reply to amach3
11/21/13

amach3:

Did you end up taking a South America rotation or will be? How do you plan on building a "story" around corporate finance role since corp fin. is not as strong as IB/consulting for MBA. If there is anything outside of work that you do and is willing to share that'd be great.

I actually decided at this time it wasn't for me. I've been away for the past year at a plant in the south and want to spend some time (a yr or two) with friends and family before taking my next job opportunity outside of the area. My plan is to eventually work abroad, but who know when that will be. Since posting that topic I have talked to someone currently in the job I was interested in, if you want any specifics. In my ideal scenario, I will take a Controller role at a plant in ~5 yrs, keeping me on the fast track, whether it be with my current company, or another.

My ideal job abroad would be in a Spanish speaking country. I'm half Hispanic by birth, but don't speak a lick of Spanish. (Just know basic words) There's always been a strong part of me that wants to become fluent, so getting a job as a Controller at a mfg plant in central/south america, or similar, would be a dream position for me. People who takes these positions are usually fast-tracked because of it as well.

There aren't many people who are doing what I'm doing. I'm a top performer at my company, and will start my 4th job after only 2 years of experience. I have spent a year in the south at a plant as well. I think having so many diverse experiences in such a short time will make it relatively easy to stand out. Being a top performer should also allow me to get promoted to SFA in a year to a year or at most two years from now. Chances are I'll have 4-5 jobs in 4 years.

11/21/13
In reply to GoIllini
11/21/13

GoIllini:

amach3:

Did you end up taking a South America rotation or will be? How do you plan on building a "story" around corporate finance role since corp fin. is not as strong as IB/consulting for MBA. If there is anything outside of work that you do and is willing to share that'd be great.

I actually decided at this time it wasn't for me. I've been away for the past year at a plant in the south and want to spend some time (a yr or two) with friends and family before taking my next job opportunity outside of the area. My plan is to eventually work abroad, but who know when that will be. Since posting that topic I have talked to someone currently in the job I was interested in, if you want any specifics. In my ideal scenario, I will take a Controller role at a plant in ~5 yrs, keeping me on the fast track, whether it be with my current company, or another.

My ideal job abroad would be in a Spanish speaking country. I'm half Hispanic by birth, but don't speak a lick of Spanish. (Just know basic words) There's always been a strong part of me that wants to become fluent, so getting a job as a Controller at a mfg plant in central/south america, or similar, would be a dream position for me. People who takes these positions are usually fast-tracked because of it as well.

There aren't many people who are doing what I'm doing. I'm a top performer at my company, and will start my 4th job after only 2 years of experience. I have spent a year in the south at a plant as well. I think having so many diverse experiences in such a short time will make it relatively easy to stand out. Being a top performer should also allow me to get promoted to SFA in a year to a year or at most two years from now. Chances are I'll have 4-5 jobs in 4 years.

As someone who manages FLDP at a very similar company to yours - you are definitely taking the right approach. Keep kicking ass at different experiences. The depth of these experiences will pay off in spades in the long run.

That being said 4-5 year to be a Plant Controller (I think you're ~2 years out of school) is very aggressive. Maybe possible, but very aggressive.

In reply to accountingbyday
11/21/13

accountingbyday:

GoIllini:
amach3:

Did you end up taking a South America rotation or will be? How do you plan on building a "story" around corporate finance role since corp fin. is not as strong as IB/consulting for MBA. If there is anything outside of work that you do and is willing to share that'd be great.

I actually decided at this time it wasn't for me. I've been away for the past year at a plant in the south and want to spend some time (a yr or two) with friends and family before taking my next job opportunity outside of the area. My plan is to eventually work abroad, but who know when that will be. Since posting that topic I have talked to someone currently in the job I was interested in, if you want any specifics. In my ideal scenario, I will take a Controller role at a plant in ~5 yrs, keeping me on the fast track, whether it be with my current company, or another.

My ideal job abroad would be in a Spanish speaking country. I'm half Hispanic by birth, but don't speak a lick of Spanish. (Just know basic words) There's always been a strong part of me that wants to become fluent, so getting a job as a Controller at a mfg plant in central/south america, or similar, would be a dream position for me. People who takes these positions are usually fast-tracked because of it as well.

There aren't many people who are doing what I'm doing. I'm a top performer at my company, and will start my 4th job after only 2 years of experience. I have spent a year in the south at a plant as well. I think having so many diverse experiences in such a short time will make it relatively easy to stand out. Being a top performer should also allow me to get promoted to SFA in a year to a year or at most two years from now. Chances are I'll have 4-5 jobs in 4 years.

As someone who manages FLDP at a very similar company to yours - you are definitely taking the right approach. Keep kicking ass at different experiences. The depth of these experiences will pay off in spades in the long run.

That being said 4-5 year to be a Plant Controller (I think you're ~2 years out of school) is very aggressive. Maybe possible, but very aggressive.

Thanks!

Yeah it's aggressive. I should have been more specific. 4-5 yrs + MBA (either taking a break for FT or PT) So 6-7 yrs experience with an MBA and CPA. I know it's aggressive, but I know of people who have done it, as I'm sure you have as well.

Are you in Chicago or the surrounding area as well? I'd love to hear about your experiences.

In reply to GoIllini
11/21/13

GoIllini:

accountingbyday:
GoIllini:
amach3:

Did you end up taking a South America rotation or will be? How do you plan on building a "story" around corporate finance role since corp fin. is not as strong as IB/consulting for MBA. If there is anything outside of work that you do and is willing to share that'd be great.

I actually decided at this time it wasn't for me. I've been away for the past year at a plant in the south and want to spend some time (a yr or two) with friends and family before taking my next job opportunity outside of the area. My plan is to eventually work abroad, but who know when that will be. Since posting that topic I have talked to someone currently in the job I was interested in, if you want any specifics. In my ideal scenario, I will take a Controller role at a plant in ~5 yrs, keeping me on the fast track, whether it be with my current company, or another.

My ideal job abroad would be in a Spanish speaking country. I'm half Hispanic by birth, but don't speak a lick of Spanish. (Just know basic words) There's always been a strong part of me that wants to become fluent, so getting a job as a Controller at a mfg plant in central/south america, or similar, would be a dream position for me. People who takes these positions are usually fast-tracked because of it as well.

There aren't many people who are doing what I'm doing. I'm a top performer at my company, and will start my 4th job after only 2 years of experience. I have spent a year in the south at a plant as well. I think having so many diverse experiences in such a short time will make it relatively easy to stand out. Being a top performer should also allow me to get promoted to SFA in a year to a year or at most two years from now. Chances are I'll have 4-5 jobs in 4 years.

As someone who manages FLDP at a very similar company to yours - you are definitely taking the right approach. Keep kicking ass at different experiences. The depth of these experiences will pay off in spades in the long run.

That being said 4-5 year to be a Plant Controller (I think you're ~2 years out of school) is very aggressive. Maybe possible, but very aggressive.

Thanks!

Yeah it's aggressive. I should have been more specific. 4-5 yrs + MBA (either taking a break for FT or PT) So 6-7 yrs experience with an MBA and CPA. I know it's aggressive, but I know of people who have done it, as I'm sure you have as well.

Are you in Chicago or the surrounding area as well? I'd love to hear about your experiences.

6-7 with MBA and CPA is still pretty aggressive, but nothing wrong with aggressive goals.

I'm pretty sure we're very close to each other. Feel free to PM if you want to chat further.

In reply to accountingbyday
11/21/13

accountingbyday:

6-7 with MBA and CPA is still pretty aggressive, but nothing wrong with aggressive goals.

I'm pretty sure we're very close to each other. Feel free to PM if you want to chat further.

That's true, something to shoot for though. Great, will do!

In reply to accountingbyday
11/21/13
11/22/13

Bumping for some Friday Qs

11/22/13

Do you like the company that you're at? That is, would you want to return at a higher level post-MBA (if that's what you decided to do)?

In reply to Poff
11/22/13

Poff:

Do you like the company that you're at? That is, would you want to return at a higher level post-MBA (if that's what you decided to do)?

Yes and no. I'm not really far enough in to my career yet to know how fast of a career progression is possible for myself yet. I like a lot of the people at my current company, but I'm just not sure on my long-term future here yet. It's one of those things you just have to let play out, and go with your gut feeling. Chances are I give it a few years, try to get 1-2 promotions, and then decide whether to go for a FT or PT MBA. If I go FT, it will because I want to transition to another place. The only reason to go for a PT imo is if you are planning to stay at your current company, and they are paying at least a part of it.

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11/23/13

Just some background. I'm a second year business school student trying to figure out what I want to do and the world of business, so my questions may not be 'challenging'.

1. What exactly does a FLDP do on a daily basis? and what are the biggest challenges that you face on a day to day basis?

2. What led you to choose a FLDP position over other job offerings, if they were an option?

Jason Yeung
Rutgers Business School
Candidate B.S. in Accounting
Candidate B.S. in Economics

In reply to JYeung Rutgers
11/24/13

JYeung Rutgers:

Just some background. I'm a second year business school student trying to figure out what I want to do and the world of business, so my questions may not be 'challenging'.

1. What exactly does a FLDP do on a daily basis? and what are the biggest challenges that you face on a day to day basis?

2. What led you to choose a FLDP position over other job offerings, if they were an option?

1. For the answer to this you really need to research the different areas you could be rotating for. There is really no set answer I could give you. You could be going accounting, variance analysis, forecasting, consolidations, cash flow, etc.

2. Work/life balance and fit. I really felt like I fit the best with my current company versus the other opportunities I had.

11/24/13

Hey thanks for doing this GoIllini.

What are you thinking of doing off-program? Staying with the company, looking at a different company, or a different industry?

In reply to MrReagan8
11/24/13

MrReagan8:

Hey thanks for doing this GoIllini.

What are you thinking of doing off-program? Staying with the company, looking at a different company, or a different industry?

As of right now, my plan is to work ~2-3 years after the program before going to get my MBA FT if I want to transition or PT if I'm happy with my current situation. I should be able to hold around 2 jobs in that time and should be a senior financial analyst when I apply.

11/27/13

I AM about to graduate and go into an FLDP with a F500 top 5 company that explicitly told us they do not place any significant emphasis on needing an MBA to move up later on. While I probably want to pursue one for personal learning and satisfaction, do you think it would be wise to take the GMAT or other exams in order to have the scores on file for later on?

Would you mind messaging me the company you will be working for (if comfortable sharing)?

What was your undergraduate study in?
Do you find a lot of CPAs/MBAs in manager/controller roles?
What would you do differently if you could start over from Day 1 of your FLDP?

Thanks

We are here to drink beer. We are here to kill war. We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well that Death will tremble to take us. - Charles Bukowski

In reply to hakuna.matata
12/2/13

mitchel_lee:

I AM about to graduate and go into an FLDP with a F500 top 5 company that explicitly told us they do not place any significant emphasis on needing an MBA to move up later on. While I probably want to pursue one for personal learning and satisfaction, do you think it would be wise to take the GMAT or other exams in order to have the scores on file for later on?

Would you mind messaging me the company you will be working for (if comfortable sharing)?

What was your undergraduate study in?

Do you find a lot of CPAs/MBAs in manager/controller roles?

What would you do differently if you could start over from Day 1 of your FLDP?

Thanks

They might not place a significant emphasis on one, but I would expect it to be a great way to stand out from your peers. It would also make it a lot easier to transition to a different company once you are at the manager role or above. If you have the time, it can't hurt to take it. Just remember, the gmat score is only good for 5 years from your exam, so don't take it yet if you're not sure when you're going to be wanting an MBA.

Do you mean the name of the company that I am currently at? I've been here for almost 1.5 yrs already. (Not a new hire) I don't feel comfortable giving you the name since I'm pretty candid in my posts here, but if you have more specific Qs feel free to ask.

Major: Finance

Yes, CPA and/or MBA are pretty well represented in mgmt roles. In my company you can move into certain roles quicker with one of them.

Kill it from day 1. I started off a little slow (big transition from college to FT first 6 months) but was one of 3 that got rated as exceeding expectations for the past year. (Hard to do since fldps have higher expectations than most)

12/2/13

If anyone has any more Qs, feel free to post them here!

12/2/13

Are there summer hires at your company? If not, what internships would be most beneficial to do in their junior summer to prepare for a FLDP position FT?

In reply to Bschoolnoob
12/2/13

Bschoolnoob:

Are there summer hires at your company? If not, what internships would be most beneficial to do in their junior summer to prepare for a FLDP position FT?

Yes there are. Accounting internships are helpful as well since having a background in accounting is a plus.

12/3/13
12/3/13

Do you happen to know if there are any programs that hire people with prior experience? I'm currently an SFA at a F500 media/ent company with about 2.5 years experience post undergrad. I'm looking to possibly get into a FLDP program before heading to get my MBA in a few years. Thanks in advance.

In reply to Mucho Dinero
12/3/13

I'm gonna step in on this one since I've researched the heck out of FLDP -type programs.

Not a single one. Most say with less than 1 year of post-college experience. Some companies offer programs to proven financial analysts, but you have to go work for that company and then break into the program.

Your best shot at one is AFTER your MBA. If you're just looking at this to improve your chances at an MBA and then switch job functions, sorry.

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

In reply to Mucho Dinero
12/3/13

Mucho Dinero:

Do you happen to know if there are any programs that hire people with prior experience? I'm currently an SFA at a F500 media/ent company with about 2.5 years experience post undergrad. I'm looking to possibly get into a FLDP program before heading to get my MBA in a few years. Thanks in advance.

Not that I'm aware of. My company does it once in a while for internal candidates, but not outside of the company. Why are you looking to get into a FLDP? If you're a SFA with 2.5 yrs experience, it sounds like you've been a high performer at your current company. I think it makes more sense to try to make it to manager, or get another promotion at the SFA level before pursuing your MBA.

In reply to GoIllini
12/3/13

Thanks again DM and Illini. Yeah that's what I thought as well. My company currently offers two programs - 1 external and 1 internal. The external one is only for recent grads/FLDP?

In reply to Mucho Dinero
12/4/13

Mucho Dinero:

Thanks again DM and Illini. Yeah that's what I thought as well. My company currently offers two programs - 1 external and 1 internal. The external one is only for recent grads/<1 year of post-college exp and the internal one is only for high performing managers right before they hit the director level. I was honestly looking to improve my chances at an MBA as well as gain more well rounded industry knowledge through the different rotations. I should be able to hit manager in about a year or so with all the current changes happening in my group. Would you happen to know if applying to an MBA program at the manager level puts me at a disadvantage compared to a candidate who applies at the manager level after going through a FLDP?

Maybe slightly, but on the flip side you have extremely good career progression, especially for not being a former FLDP. Are you planning on getting your MBA PT given your good progression, or are you planning to go a different way? Would you consider the internal program? That sounds pretty cool, I've never heard of anything like that.

12/5/13

GoIllini,

First off, thanks for doing this.

Is there any advice you'd give someone starting their first rotation or FLDP internship? Anything you wish you would have known before you started? I'm doing an FLDP internship this summer and will interview for the FT FLDP program towards the end.

ILL

12/6/13

Can you give us an example of how an FLDPer was able to make him/herself stand out and be deemed a "high performer"?

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

In reply to da chief
12/6/13

illini pride:

GoIllini,

First off, thanks for doing this.

Is there any advice you'd give someone starting their first rotation or FLDP internship? Anything you wish you would have known before you started? I'm doing an FLDP internship this summer and will interview for the FT FLDP program towards the end.

ILL

No problem!

Yes, my advice is to kill it from the start. Just do the little things to stand out. Network with managers, stay later, ask questions, volunteer for projects, etc. Just look at what other interns and fldps are doing, and try to stand out from them. I naturally have an outgoing/social personality, so I stand out in that way, but I also work hard. If people like you, and you are a good/productive worker, you're going to do just fine.

INI

In reply to D M
12/6/13

D M:

Can you give us an example of how an FLDPer was able to make him/herself stand out and be deemed a "high performer"?

Sure. Basically just get outside the framework of your assumed job responsibilities. Ask your manager questions, ask them for more work, have a positive attitude about anything thrown your way, etc.

Easy example I have: You're working at a plant under the Controller (on a rotation), and you have a key member of your team leave for another company. (accounting manager). It takes several months to get a replacement hired, but in the meantime you gladly take up most of the responsibilities that the previous manager had and do a killer job with it. Doing things that make your bosses job easier are they kind of things that will really stand out to them.

Other general examples...boss asks you for a certain set of data...you give it to them quickly, formatted nicely, and possibly provide some of your own analysis on it, and ask questions so that you can help more in future requests. By asking questions and trying to improve the data, you will stand out from the average Joe.

Look to improve any processes, files, etc. that are a regular part of you or your team's jobs.

Create new files, models, etc. that are improvements.

Be someone that people like. (preferably yourself) Be social.

Work the hours required of your job and then some.

I've done all of the above, and it's worked for me. Just go above and beyond, and most importantly, don't be afraid to ask questions.

Other friends I have in corp fin stand out by working more than most. Work hard, work smart, or a combination of the two.

12/7/13
12/7/13

Hello,

I'm about to start my rotational program at a fortune 200 company on Feburary. I am very interested in the treasury division, have you had any experience working with them? And how would you tell your manager or program director that you're interested in a specific division for the next rotation. Or do you think rotations are mostly decided through business needs.

Thanks in advance.

In reply to 12345cow
12/7/13

xiayu7778:

Hello,

I'm about to start my rotational program at a fortune 200 company on Feburary. I am very interested in the treasury division, have you had any experience working with them? And how would you tell your manager or program director that you're interested in a specific division for the next rotation. Or do you think rotations are mostly decided through business needs.

Thanks in advance.

Congrats! Where at location wise? Have they told you what your rotations will be yet?

I haven't had any experience working with treasury, but it seems pretty interesting to me as well.

At my company it is one of the rotations, but our rotations are largely set by need/the committee of execs, so we don't have a say in our initial schedule of rotations. It probably just depends on who is in charge of your program in terms of whether or not they would be willing/would try to get you into treasury. I would definitely float the idea out there to those higher up after you establish yourself. Network hard first, and then you will probably have people willing to go to bat for you.

If you can't get a rotation in the group, definitely network with those in the group to get an idea of how it is. You can always take a placement there after the program if they want you and there is a need.

In reply to GoIllini
12/8/13

thanks a lot for the information!

We are here to drink beer. We are here to kill war. We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well that Death will tremble to take us. - Charles Bukowski

In reply to hakuna.matata
12/8/13

mitchel_lee:

thanks a lot for the information!

No problem!

In reply to GoIllini
12/8/13

Would you also say that completing an obscure location could also set you apart? I have the opportunity to intern at HQ (what most people do) or a slue of other less desirable locations. With the end goal of obtaining full time employment in mind and also getting great experience I've been mulling over choosing an off the map location to stand out.

Thanks

In reply to da chief
12/8/13

illini pride:

Would you also say that completing an obscure location could also set you apart? I have the opportunity to intern at HQ (what most people do) or a slue of other less desirable locations. With the end goal of obtaining full time employment in mind and also getting great experience I've been mulling over choosing an off the map location to stand out.

Thanks

Yes definitely. It doesn't need to necessarily be obscure, but rather the fact that you are willing to relocate that is big. Do they let you choose where you are going to work, or are you just giving a preference? I would just make it clear that you are extremely flexible and willing to go where they need/want you. That will help you stand out, as most people will probably want to stay in their comfort zones at HQ. In my FLDP program, we have people who have done all their rotations at corporate, versus people like me, who were very flexible in location. While that's fine that they didn't want to relocate, it probably puts them at a disadvantage in the eyes of most people.

In reply to GoIllini
12/9/13

Essentially they will give us the choice of positions at a number of locations; all having different duties. From there we rank them by preference and they do their best to match us. From my understanding everyone ends up going where they want -- which is usually corporate. With that being said, corporate would be ideal socially; however, like you said it could be hard to pass up an opportunity to distinguish myself and live somewhere a little random. I have no qualms with traveling/relocating and in fact it was this which attracted me to the FLDP program.

In reply to da chief
12/9/13

illini pride:

Essentially they will give us the choice of positions at a number of locations; all having different duties. From there we rank them by preference and they do their best to match us. From my understanding everyone ends up going where they want -- which is usually corporate. With that being said, corporate would be ideal socially; however, like you said it could be hard to pass up an opportunity to distinguish myself and live somewhere a little random. I have no qualms with traveling/relocating and in fact it was this which attracted me to the FLDP program.

If you want to PM me your options/choices we can discuss it further.

12/14/13
1/15/14

Figured I'd bump this for a new year. I'm now in my last rotation and will be graduation the program in around 6 months.

In reply to GoIllini
1/16/14

Im graduating in 6 months too, congrats!

In reply to amach3
1/16/14

amach3:

Im graduating in 6 months too, congrats!

Nice man! Any idea where you wanna go next?

In reply to GoIllini
1/16/14

I just got back from an assignment abroad and would like more international experience. I'm focusing my efforts now networking with ppl from intl locations and hopefully an opening comes somewhere when summer hits. Looking mostly in Asia region.

In reply to amach3
1/16/14

amach3:

I just got back from an assignment abroad and would like more international experience. I'm focusing my efforts now networking with ppl from intl locations and hopefully an opening comes somewhere when summer hits. Looking mostly in Asia region.

That's awesome! You should do a write up about your experience. I'm very interested in it myself. You could post it here or start your own thread.

So you must be in a company with a lot of international opportunities....what industry?

1/22/14
In reply to Mucho Dinero
1/23/14

General Mills & Dell hires you into their Senior Financial Analyst FDLP if you have 3-4 years work experience.

In reply to ishouldbstudying
1/23/14

It's called the Finance Rotation Program, but I think 4-5 years is generally what they look for (2 years UFLDP -> 2 years GAT -> FRP). Also big on internal promotions.

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

1/30/14
1/31/14

Any idea about Shell's programme for financial Analysts.It says 3 yrs , with rotation i think every 6 months within every function? Exxon says it helps you change function every 2-3 years.I would rush for oil and gas industry , 40-50 hours , 5 days a week and people saying 100k starting for junior guys although bonuses are like 10-15% i think

In reply to RohanShinde
2/3/14

RohanShinde:

Any idea about Shell's programme for financial Analysts.It says 3 yrs , with rotation i think every 6 months within every function? Exxon says it helps you change function every 2-3 years.I would rush for oil and gas industry , 40-50 hours , 5 days a week and people saying 100k starting for junior guys although bonuses are like 10-15% i think

I don't have any info on this program sorry.

2/5/14

Just an update. I'm in my final rotation and will be done with the program in June. The final placement process will happen late spring so it's something that's on my mind already.

In reply to GoIllini
2/5/14

Thanks for the update! How are things going? Still liking the program/job?

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

In reply to D M
2/5/14

D M:

Thanks for the update! How are things going? Still liking the program/job?

Things are good. I transferred back to Chicago from Houston so it's nice to be back home. It looks like there will be some good opportunities coming out of the program so things are looking up as of right now. I'm planning on starting to study for the CPA this summer as well.

In reply to GoIllini
2/18/14

Thanks for this great thread.

2/18/14

I dont like posting journal entry type of work and would want something more stimulating.So would i be fit for FLDP?
I like corporate development the most , since it involves M&A stuff but i also like variance analysis,budgeting,cost management,capital budgeting etc , i like anything which is mentally stimulating and not something which is drab and boring

In reply to RohanShinde
2/18/14

Depends which FLDP

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

In reply to TechwithnoExp
2/18/14

TechwithnoExp:

Thanks for this great thread.

No problem man!

In reply to RohanShinde
2/18/14

RohanShinde:

I dont like posting journal entry type of work and would want something more stimulating.So would i be fit for FLDP?

I like corporate development the most , since it involves M&A stuff but i also like variance analysis,budgeting,cost management,capital budgeting etc , i like anything which is mentally stimulating and not something which is drab and boring

Isn't that what most people want?? You may book some journal entries yes, but you won't be doing mindless work.

In reply to D M
2/21/14

So which FLDP is most suitable to me based on my needs mentioned above? Could you name some Companies?

In reply to GoIllini
2/21/14

Yea but what everybody wants everybody does not get.Im just worried that say a 36 month FLDP , where i would post journal entries in one of the 6 month rotations , i would end up getting demotivated

In reply to RohanShinde
2/21/14

Almost every FLDP has accounting and finance components, though I don't know if JUST "entering journal entries" is a component of any of them. That's what corpfin is. If you're the top performer, you won't have to worry about being in a journal entry position (thought frankly, bookkeeping is probably not where any company will send you).

There are some companies with both finance AND accounting development programs (Dell, off the top of my head). Apply to the finance program and it's unlikely you'll be stuck in an accounting position you don't like.

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

7/1/14

So I figured I'd bring this discussion up from the dead in case there are more questions. I'm currently out of the program (as of May) and can say I've now completed an FLDP program.

In reply to GoIllini
7/2/14

Congrat man, that's great to hear. Mind giving us a rundown of how you feel you're positioned going forward? Feel like opportunities are strong, you got the job you wanted to end up in, etc?

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

In reply to D M
7/3/14

D M:

It's called the Finance Rotation Program, but I think 4-5 years is generally what they look for (2 years UFLDP -> 2 years GAT -> FRP). Also big on internal promotions.

I'm interested in hearing more about this, actually. I'm assuming GAT is G-something Audit Team, or something of that sort? Does the FRP require an MBA? How does it compare to post-MBA rotational programs? Finally, is this a fairly common type of program?

In reply to Reared_Panda
7/3/14

GAT is Global Audit and Transformation. I don't believe FRP requires an MBA - it's more an internal program. Honestly I don't know much beyond that, I haven't really looked into it.

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

7/7/14

This ones about corporate finance in general. Are most positions directly out of undergrad at the company headquarters or in a major hub like NYC or LA? Thanks a bunch

In reply to coltsnation
7/8/14

Beeler:

This ones about corporate finance in general. Are most positions directly out of undergrad at the company headquarters or in a major hub like NYC or LA? Thanks a bunch

Most fldps are generally based out of a corporate hub but then there are rotations all over the country. But CF in general will have jobs everywhere. Companies have finance needs in many offices. But obviously a bigger city with more companies will have more available jobs than a smaller city with less industry. I think that answers your question.

7/8/14

How is recruiting for MSF students? We're not undergraduates, but we aren't MBA level either. Would we recruit with the undergraduates?

Currently: becoming a clinical psychologist... yep, I quit finance
Previously: M&A consulting (Big 4), M&A banking (MM), business research (HBS)

In reply to chicandtoughness
7/8/14

chicandtoughness:

How is recruiting for MSF students? We're not undergraduates, but we aren't MBA level either. Would we recruit with the undergraduates?

Yes, generally msf students recruit with undergrads. And your chances are generally the same as an undergrad at your school with maybe a slight bump but not a big one. This is true in banking too.

In reply to AllDay_028
7/8/14
In reply to AllDay_028
7/8/14

AllDay_028:

chicandtoughness:

How is recruiting for MSF students? We're not undergraduates, but we aren't MBA level either. Would we recruit with the undergraduates?

Yes, generally msf students recruit with undergrads. And your chances are generally the same as an undergrad at your school with maybe a slight bump but not a big one. This is true in banking too.


Good to know. Thanks!

Currently: becoming a clinical psychologist... yep, I quit finance
Previously: M&A consulting (Big 4), M&A banking (MM), business research (HBS)

In reply to coltsnation
7/8/14

Beeler:

This ones about corporate finance in general. Are most positions directly out of undergrad at the company headquarters or in a major hub like NYC or LA? Thanks a bunch

The majority of the positions are at HQ, while the rotations outside of the area are at manufacturing facilities, which are usually not the most desirable locations.

In reply to AllDay_028
7/8/14

AllDay_028:

chicandtoughness:

How is recruiting for MSF students? We're not undergraduates, but we aren't MBA level either. Would we recruit with the undergraduates?

Yes, generally msf students recruit with undergrads. And your chances are generally the same as an undergrad at your school with maybe a slight bump but not a big one. This is true in banking too.

Yes, what AllDay said.

In reply to D M
7/8/14

D M:

Congrat man, that's great to hear. Mind giving us a rundown of how you feel you're positioned going forward? Feel like opportunities are strong, you got the job you wanted to end up in, etc?


Thanks!

I'm feeling optimistic, just not sure if I'm going to stay in corp finance long term or not. Time will tell. I definitely got a good job. (Segment FP&A) I feel that being a graduate of the program positions me pretty well for the future as well.

7/21/14

^Also interested.

7/21/14

Sorry for reviving an old thread :(

Can anyone speak about getting into an FLDP as a banker? Say, someone who just finished their analyst stint and is interested in transitioning into corpfin? Would it be possible to go directly into an entry level FLDP, or would the MBA -> FLDP route make more sense?

Currently: becoming a clinical psychologist... yep, I quit finance
Previously: M&A consulting (Big 4), M&A banking (MM), business research (HBS)

In reply to chicandtoughness
7/21/14

Most entry-level FLDPs require you have less than a year of working experience (I haven't found one without this requirement). There are also MBA-level programs, but they of course require an MBA. There are mid-career programs (usually 4-10 years of experience). I've never heard of a company recruiting for those, but I haven't looked into it much.

As a banker, your best bet is to jump directly into a CD-type position (assuming you were doing something M&A related) or possibly strat. From there you go for an MBA program and then jump back in at the post-MBA FLDP level.

Or you can just go straight from banking -> MBA and then into an FLDP. That really makes the most sense.

"You stop being an asshole when it sucks to be you." -IlliniProgrammer
"Your grammar made me wish I'd been aborted." -happypantsmcgee

In reply to D M
7/21/14

D M:

Or you can just go straight from banking -> MBA and then into an FLDP. That really makes the most sense.


That's what I thought. Thanks for the insight! :)

Currently: becoming a clinical psychologist... yep, I quit finance
Previously: M&A consulting (Big 4), M&A banking (MM), business research (HBS)

9/27/14

Thanks for the thread. I'm at a top Actg grad program, and will be recruiting next fall with a strong preference towards rotationals over public accounting. How much emphasis do you think I should place on initial location in making my decision, as opposed to fit and liking the people and the company? What was your process in deciding to accept an offer from your current company?

In reply to danin650
10/19/14

danin650:

Thanks for the thread. I'm at a top Actg grad program, and will be recruiting next fall with a strong preference towards rotationals over public accounting. How much emphasis do you think I should place on initial location in making my decision, as opposed to fit and liking the people and the company? What was your process in deciding to accept an offer from your current company?

One of the big things I would keep in mind is the headquarters of the company. While in many rotational program you will be rotating through different locations, ultimately the long-term career path will end at headquarters. Look for somewhere that you can see yourself in (at-least for a decent time horizon). You don't want to go work for a company that is headquartered in a city/area that you could never see yourself in long-term. That's just not a good way to approach a career in corporate finance in my opinion. That being said, the culture/fit is one of the most important, if not the most important things that you should consider. Ultimately for me that was my deciding factor. Other things you want to consider include industry, history of the program (how long, where are the alumni, etc), company performance, overseas opportunities (if this interests you), etc.

Hope this helps!

12/30/15

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