Andrew Clayton long service

Partner Andrew Clayton is one of our colleagues who’s celebrating a personal long service milestone.

Andrew marks his 25 years with senior partner Jon Heeney and fellow partner Robert Smith

Partner Andrew Clayton is one of our colleagues who's celebrating a personal long service milestone.

In his case, he has been with the firm 25 years, starting straight from John Leggott College.

Here, he reflects on his career, looks at the changes over the years and looks to the future.

Tell us about your RNS career.

I started at RNS aged 18 as an accounts trainee fresh from John Leggott college.

I had always done well with maths and numbers so a career in accountancy seemed like a good fit. 

Through the firm's training program a did a two-year accounting technician course then three more years studies to qualify as a chartered accountant. In those first five years I worked on a varied portfolio of clients doing accounts, tax and audit work. 

I won a tax award during my studies and thought about going further into niche taxation but around that time I also had an opportunity to spend some time with Bob Marris on the financial services side. 

I was still in my early 20s and pensions and investments were not really on my radar. But after another three years studying them they were and I was ready to be authorised to give financial advice.

I spent a few years wearing both hats as an accountant and financial adviser but my main interest was with the financial services. 

After about 10 years with the firm I was delighted to get the opportunity to join as a full partner in RNS Chartered Accountants and also as a director for financial services to focus on advising clients full time and running that part of the business.

How have things changed over the 25 years?

In some ways it feels the same because the end result is the same, helping to get positive outcomes for clients. 

But when you look behind the scenes it is easy to forget how much the process to get there has changed.

There were two of us when I started and we did most of the processing ourselves. 

Now we have a full team of staff and are constantly evolving and adding more resources and partners for more ways to invest and to keep the service we provide modern, relevant and effective.

The range of investments has changed a lot. The investment universe is truly global now. 

Thankfully technologies and ways of working have also changed to enable us to access it all.

The economic environment has changed and changed again. It is called an economic cycle for a reason.

Regulation and oversight have increased significantly which is good for clients and for the financial services industry in general because it means more governance and more robust outcomes for people. 

What about the future?

For me, after 25 years in the business, I want to keep using that experience in as many ways as I can. 

I will always spend time one to one with my clients, but nowadays a lot of my time is with our staff and the great team we have, and on the nuts and bolts of the business to keep it running smoothly.

It has always been continuous change and evolution in this industry over my time and I'm sure that will continue for the next 25 years.

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