Technical accounting professional Daniel Heckmann has extensive experience. In addition to his world travels, he recently moved from Australia to Finland to join Deloitte Assurance. It is not just about creating new processes or outcomes that he enjoys, but also about improving existing ones.
It is easy to solve any accounting matter for your clients if you have prior knowledge and a curious mindset.
Assurance professional with a global perspective
Though I’m originally from Cologne, I’ve lived in Berlin, Mainz, and Frankfurt in Germany. The move to Finland came after living in Sydney, Australia for almost nine years. This was the right time for me to be a little closer to my family in Germany. Due to the fact that my girlfriend is Finnish, it was easy for me to choose Finland since I can work in English there.
Within a couple of weeks of arriving in Finland, I began looking for interesting jobs online. Due to my previous experience working for Big 4, I also checked out Deloitte’s website. IFRS technical roles were advertised in a job ad. I was delighted to join the Deloitte Assurance team following some very interesting and constructive team meetings.
Even though I started during a global pandemic, everyone helped me with any questions I had. Having time to help each other is always a priority in the workplace.
We support our clients on technical accounting questions related to IFRS 17 and agile processes
The University of Mainz offered me a degree in Economics. Within two weeks of Lehman Brothers’ collapse, I started my career as a financial services auditor. Auditing banks was an exciting experience.
Due to the majority of my career spent in banking, asset management, and insurance, I am a specialist in technical accounting questions regarding financial instruments, fair value, and insurance contracts.
In my work, I enjoy creating new things and improving existing processes. Analyzing the client’s accounting systems to determine how the additional disclosures will be presented, for example, when looking at a new accounting standard or requirement. As a result of years of auditing clients, I have gained a lot of knowledge and experience.
For Nordic Insurance clients, the new insurance standard IFRS 17 poses a huge challenge. In addition to being challenging, working on these projects can also be stimulating since you have to interpret the standard choices. Furthermore, it involves very close collaboration with colleagues in the Nordic region and in the UK.
Curiosity is the key to success
I find studying Finnish to be the most challenging part of my learning process. I have slowly noticed progress over the past year. It’s really rewarding for me to see my junior team members develop their skills by sharing experiences and knowledge from previous projects.
Deloitte’s Audit & Assurance practices obviously require an understanding of accounting standards. Every step of the way, we need to know your debits and credits. Having a curious mindset is another important skill. Making sure I understood a response fully and checked the facts was one of the things that helped me. You can handle any accounting issue your clients have with that prior knowledge and mindset.
- Typical assurance projects last from a few hours to several months. All year round assistance with audit teams, and some other projects are just 2 meetings and an analysis of IFRS.
- Insurers, banks, and utilities are the last three industries I have worked in.
- My well-being is taken care of by laughing constantly. Moderation is key when it comes to eating well and enjoying yourself. It is sometimes difficult for me to persuade myself to exercise, but I keep myself fit by exercising regularly.
- Cooking and traveling are two of my passions. Cooking classes are often available in my travel destinations, so I combine both.
- Daniel, what did you not know about him? The year 2017 was a year of travel for me. I spent seven months traveling the world. On this trip, I visited all 7 New Wonders of the World. There was nothing like the Taj Mahal.