Our Graduates

A day in the life of…
The Broadstone Investment Consulting Team

Adam Lacey, Investment Analyst at Broadstone, has been working in the Investment Consulting team in the Bristol office since he finished his Economics degree at the University of Bath in July 2022.

He shares his experience at Broadstone to-date as well as an insight into what the typical day of an Investment Analyst looks like.

Adam Lacey

Over my first half a year or so at Broadstone and in the Pensions industry I have lost track of the number of times that I’ve been told some variation of the words “It’s not always this hectic.”

This might be my colleagues at Broadstone, or fund managers and consultant relations teams during update meetings with asset managers.

It’s been a tumultous year for almost everyone no matter the industry. However, the team here have been doing some incredibly important work that I’ve been lucky enough to get involved with.

Needless to say, it’s been an exciting period to start a career.  As such, no day is quite the same – and it would be hard to produce a representative timetable, so this is just a sample from a recent week.

1. 6:30-09:00: Morning Routine/Study. As part of the graduate programme, Broadstone are sponsoring the CFA qualification. I am sitting the Level 1 exam in February 2023, so most mornings I sit down at my kitchen table for some studying.

I use a lot of the knowledge and techniques from the curriculum in my day-to-day work anyway and studying early helps to get the brain firing on all cylinders before I start my day – a win-win!

2. 09:00-09:15: Arriving at the office. We tend to spend 3 or 4 days in week in the office so once I arrive, I spend the first 15 minutes or so catching up on emails and sketching out a to-do list for the day.

On this day, I had a few projects that I knew I’d be finishing up, but the schedule always tends to be relatively flexible, especially once I’m up to date.

3. 09:15-12:00: Morning activity. This was one of those days where the schedule gets a shuffle.

We received confirmation from a client that they were happy for us to implement their Investment Consultant’s advice that we had recently issued.

A large part of the job is making sure that the assets held by a Scheme are helping them to achieve their goals. A lot of this is analytical work, (where my studies are invaluable) but it also involves corresponding with asset managers, clients, consultants and other stakeholders to ensure that everything is implemented efficiently and proactively.

4. 13:00-15:00: New Oportunities. At the start of the afternoon, I began working on a presentation for a consultant’s new business proposal meeting.

This was a general, introductory meeting so the deck covered the impact that various market shocks can have on a Scheme’s assets, and how a well-formulated plan for the future can help protect against such an event.

This had been one of the larger projects I’d been involved with, so finishing it up and sending it over to the Investment Consultant to review was great.

5. 15:00-15:45: Team Meeting. Every day we get together for a general update on the team’s work-in-progress and upcoming events or meetings with clients.

6. 15:45-17:00: Finishing up. For the final part of the day, I worked on some reporting that we are doing for a Scheme on how their investments have performed over the most recent quarter.

Once this done, I popped down a few notes on my to-do list for the following day (adding some items that I had picked up at the team meeting), one final check against what I had planned to complete today and then off.

Although, Bristol Library is open late on Tuesdays and those exams are closing in…!

Adam Lacey – Investment Analyst

A day in the life of…
The Broadstone PPF Actuarial Team

Sam Cloke, PPF Actuarial Consultant at Broadstone, has been working in the PPF team in the Redditch office since March 2022.  Sam graduated from the University of Nottingham with a BSc in Mathematics in 2020.

Read Sam’s insights below into what life is like working at Broadstone.

Sam Cloke

I have been with the company for about 8 months and have been working in the Redditch office as a Pension Protection Fund (“PPF”) Actuarial Consultant during this time. I studied Mathematics at university and graduated in 2020. Having not worked in the industry before it was a bit overwhelming when I first started, there were a lot of new things to learn, but the team did an excellent job of welcoming me and teaching me the ins and outs of the role. One thing I was nervous about going into the job was that, because I’d had no experience in the world of pensions before, I wouldn’t understand what I was doing and wouldn’t enjoy it. The lack of experience definitely hasn’t held me back though. The company has been excellent at organising training on each of the areas I’ve struggled with, and everyone is happy to answer questions if you need help.

Working with the PPF Actuarial team in Redditch, my job helps to protect peoples’ pensions when their employer becomes insolvent. The work I do helps to ensure employees receive the money they are owed, which I find very fulfilling because it is nice to know that the work I’m doing is improving peoples’ lives. Most of my work involves pension calculations and valuations, often using Excel, however there are also lots of opportunities to attend client meetings, discuss business opportunities, and present reports to trustees. This means that there is real variety on a day-to-day basis, and if you’re interested in working independently, working as part of a larger team, or interacting with clients there is something for you.

As well as the individual assistance that I’ve had from my colleagues, the company has several helpful initiatives to support graduates including a generous study package, which has allowed me to take paid time off work to revise for professional exams. Broadstone has recently introduced a new Graduate Development Programme which has been a fantastic way to learn about the different areas of the business, all the distinct opportunities the company offers, as well as make connections with graduates throughout the other offices. This is supplemented by the Mentor Scheme, which allows me to ask a more senior member of the company for advice and help surrounding exams, work, or career goals in general. I’ve found this to be particularly useful and has really helped me outline some professional objectives.

Another thing that Broadstone does well is their culture around feedback. I feel that my voice matters and that my line manager and directors are not only eager for feedback but care about improving my work environment, workload, and well-being. On top of this they are good at giving feedback too, always happy to talk through work I’ve completed, noting areas for improvement, and explaining what could be done differently. All these things combined have improved the initial feeling of unpreparedness and have really helped me to settle into my new role.

Sam Cloke – Actuarial Consultant

A day in the life of…
The Broadstone Pensions Administration Team

Natalia Wegrzyniak, Pensions Administrator at Broadstone, has been working in the Sheffield Administration team since she finished her Business and Management degree at the De Montfort University in July 2021.

Read Natalia’s insights below into what life is like working at Broadstone.

Natalia Wegrzyniak

I joined Broadstone as a Trainee Pensions Administrator in July 2021. Having no previous experience in the industry, I did not know what to expect from my role, however, ever since my first day I was put at ease that my colleagues would provide me with the required training and support.

Within my first year at the company, I completed the trainee programme and got promoted to Pensions Administrator, which provided me with greater responsibilities.

I start my day by prioritising my tasks and making sure that any urgent queries are resolved promptly. Throughout the day, I deal with numerous enquiries either via email, phone calls or letters that can range from simple questions about scheme benefits to more complex queries. Accuracy is vital in my role, to ensure that the highest standard of service is provided to Trustees, clients, and members alike.

Having previous experience in customer service has helped me whilst dealing with enquiries and resolving issues daily.  One of Broadstone’s core values is to be the most customer service centric business. As an Administrator I am conscious of my impact on building reliable relationships with members and clients, as well as maintaining strong brand reputation. Learning that Broadstone has been voted the number one third-party administration provider in the recent Professional Pensions survey, for the second year in a row has made me feel extremely proud of being a part of the administration team and the recognition that our continuous hard work has received.

A big part of my role involves calculations, which requires a good understanding of the specific pension scheme rules. Broadstone has always provided me with relevant training and briefings to stay updated on pension legislation and regulatory requirements. My time at Broadstone has made me appreciate the importance of continuous learning and motivated me to pursue professional certification, including completing the Retirement Provision Certificate qualification. I have been encouraged to take part in new projects which in turn has enhanced my knowledge of the pensions industry and allowed me to contribute more effectively to our common objectives.

Overall, my day is quite varied and can be busy, but it is also rewarding knowing that my work is helping people through what can be a stressful time in their life. Being a part of a supportive team encourages me to go the extra mile to end each day with a sense of fulfilment.

Natalia Wegrzyniak