Maddison started out at HLB Mann Judd Sydney as a gradate in the firm’s 2020 Graduate Program.

When searching for graduate positions, Maddison observed that many of the Big Four firms only offered specialised roles.

What drew Maddison to HLB Mann Judd’s program was the opportunity to be exposed to a broad range of clients and jobs before settling into a specialist or specific area of accounting.

What’s your ‘Team HLB’ story?

I initially heard about HLB through a family member. I did some research and applied for a graduate role through the website. I was invited to an interview with the firm’s HR team. In my interview I shared that I was unsure of which area of accounting I wanted to apply for; and they helped me decide which division would be the best fit for me in the firm.

Being a fresh graduate, I knew I wanted to work at a firm that would give me a diverse range of work and responsibility to get a broader understanding of the field. Therefore, what really, stood out to me, was HLB Sydney’s “exchange” program. This is where staff are given the opportunity to work in another division within the firm.

I also love the Barangaroo area, which our Sydney office overlooks. HLB is only a short walk from the water and the restaurants, cafes and bars along the wharf.

Follow Maddison as she walks us through a day in the Sydney office


Before I start work its usually a pilates session or walking my three dogs! I arrive in the office around 8:30am, make myself a cup of tea in the kitchen and chat to other colleagues who are eating breakfast.

I will take my tea back to my desk, greet my desk buddies and start on my work for the day.


I spend most of the morning working on client files. We have a mid-morning division meeting and the team will get together to run through various outstanding items. Before the COVID restrictions were introduced, these meetings were in the kitchen (during COVID it was a virtual Teams call).


Lunch breaks are flexible so they often fall between 12 noon and 2pm. I usually meet the other graduates for a walk at lunch time down to Barangaroo.

We eat our lunch on the wharf overlooking the water and the ferries. Sydney harbour is beautiful and the view never gets old!


I will continue working on client files after lunch. I also arrange to meet with my manager to discuss any questions or difficulties I have come across in completing any of the client files.

It doesn’t happen everyday however…

COVID meant that I missed the opportunity to meet many of my colleagues until the end of 2020. Yet during such a challenging time, there was always support and help available.

The firm allocates mentor to each of the grads so for me, this was an opportunity to have a regular lunch catch up and discuss any concerns or questions.

The culture and support at HLB has definitely been a highlight of my first year at the firm.

Maddison’s advice for graduates

When looking for a graduate role, I suggest doing research and talking to people to get an idea of what kind workplace you are looking to join.