Compliance ensures adherence to all rules, regulations, policies and standards that govern the firm and the securities industry. Positions cover a wide range of areas such as anti-money laundering, regulatory issues, establishing and monitoring control mechanisms and more.
What does your day-to-day look like?
I am working on training decks, materials and more for our training rollout plan. I have also been helping another team with excel spreadsheets and consolidating information regarding regulations from rulebooks. If I am not at my desk doing those things, I am in meetings with various people or out at lunch with people I have introduced myself to.
What has been your biggest takeaway so far?
My biggest takeaway has been that people at Raymond James genuinely want to help me succeed, so I shouldn't be afraid to ask questions. I also love that I am working on projects that add value to the firm so that when I leave, the things that I started are going to be completed and executed by Compliance.
Tell me about your department.
As Raymond James continues to expand, the demand for the compliance department has become crucial to the success of the company. The function of the compliance department is to define the possible risks that Raymond James faces from different regulators. Once the risk is defined, compliance assesses processes to prevent violations that could harm the company. What I find so unique about the department is that it’s a combination of law and analytics. In order to protect Raymond James, compliance creates policies and regulation while utilizing database analytics to ensure that adherence to the policies are being kept. The way I like to think of it is that compliance is saving the company money and protecting its reputation.
What advice would you give to future candidates?
The best advice I was given, that I will continue to give, is to treat every day like an interview. Be an authentic version of yourself, but always remember to keep a consistent level of enthusiasm with projects and meeting new people. Something as simple as saying hello to a stranger in the elevator makes the biggest difference. You never know who you will be in the elevator with one day, maybe even Paul Reilly!
Describe the eight pillars of Global Functions Compliance.
The eight pillars of compliance are risk assessment, testing and monitoring, metrics and reporting, exam and inquiry management, issue management, regulatory-change management, policy governance, and training. They all relate in that each contributes to the identification and mitigation of compliance risk.
What has been the best thing about working at Raymond James?
My favorite parts about working at Raymond James have been the variety in my schedule. I have never felt like I’ve had the same day twice. Additionally, I enjoy the creative freedom that I have been given while working on various assignments. This makes working more enjoyable and my results better.
What have you been working on for the past few weeks?
I have been working with the screening team. We are essentially the “Backbone of AML.” Whenever a new or current client comes through, they have to go through a screening process to ensure that they are not a politically exposed person or have any negative news attached to them, because they would be deemed to be a “liability.”
Who do you look up to when it comes to your department and why?
The manager of AML and Financial Crimes, AJ Iaquinta, is someone I look up to because he is a very hard-working guy and moved up quickly, which is something I aspire to do. He knows how to get stuff done and is really focused, but he is also someone who will always make time to talk to you and see how your day is going.
How has being in law school helped you with the work you have done with the firm?
Law school is probably not what most people expect. You don’t sit around and memorize the laws of every state. It is much more geared toward building effective reading, writing and critical thinking skills. These skills are transferable to most jobs, but they are particularly important in legal jobs. Because of these skills, I have been able to tackle a lot of diverse and challenging projects this summer in an industry that is completely new to me.
What is the biggest thing you are going to take away from this experience?
The biggest takeaway for me has been the importance of continuing to network during my professional career. Networking is obviously very important when you are looking for a job, but I didn’t realize how important it was after you landed that new job.
What makes you passionate about internal audit?
It is a combination of the people and the rewarding feeling I receive from the work I do. The department is composed of a diverse group of individuals, with their own unique ideas and perspectives to offer. The work I do consists of auditing various departments, getting the chance to work with individuals throughout the firm, and trying to understand the ins and outs of a particular department…the minutiae of it all!
What makes Raymond James stand out among other firms when it comes to your future career search?
I have always wanted to work in financial services for two reasons. I am better at working with numbers, and I wanted to help people in whatever fashion I can possible. The culture of this ever-growing firm has stayed consistent, even throughout its growth compared to others in the industry. Hard work and recognition go hand and hand here at Raymond James. The firm invests in its employees, whether it’s helping them find their perfect niche, or helping to build yourself as a better professional.