PKF Francis Clark

Sharon Partner


“The peer group support is fantastic, with colleagues always willing to listen and help.”

  • What attracted you to PKF Francis Clark?

    The client base and location. I wanted to feel I was able to make a difference to business owners working as part of their team and PKF Francis Clark is the natural home for those businesses in the West Country. I joined a long time ago so the firm was much smaller then, but growing and an exciting place to be.

  • Tell us about your role and what you get involved in

    I’m a client engagement partner, working with businesses across a range of sectors.  My role is to provide advice, bring in specialists where needed and take overall responsibility for our work on those clients, very much as part of a team. I have a couple of specialist areas, healthcare and not for profit, but have retained a wide ranging client base that I’ve built up over time.

  • What do you like most about working here?

    The variety and the people. No two days are the same, as although everyone is working under the same accounting and tax rules, each client brings their own business challenges and needs. And I get to work with great people, both clients and in-house.

  • Tell us about the culture

    I’ve always found it very friendly and supportive. There are opportunities to get involved in how the business develops.

  • Tell us about your career path since joining the firm and your ambitions for the future

    I joined as a newly qualified manager in 1995, and became a partner in 2003. Career progression was less structured then, so it was quite a big step up at the time. Since becoming a partner I’ve taken on a number of roles, developed specialisms in healthcare and Academy schools, led the firm’s HR team for a time and worked in both the Exeter and Torquay offices. I want to play my part in the continued development of the firm and help those coming through have successful careers.

  • What’s been your biggest achievement?

    Hopefully I haven’t peaked yet! The great thing is that the biggest achievements happen all the time, when you help clients achieve their ambitions or dig them out of a hole. And seeing people I helped recruit flying in their careers is a real buzz.

  • How are you supported in your role?

    The peer group support is fantastic, with colleagues always willing to listen and help. The firm also provides infrastructure support – it’s great to have the back up from specialists, people services, marketing and finance teams to enable me to focus on my role.

  • What makes someone successful here?

    Commitment to the clients, working well in a team, being technically strong but also able to communicate that expertise effectively. Embracing change and being able to use or develop new ideas helps people progress.

  • What advice would you give someone who’s considering applying?

    Make sure you understand the role, a career here doesn’t fit the stereotype many people still have about what being an accountant means. Take advantage of the events and work experience to gain an insight if you can, or speak to someone informally. And if you think it’s for you, definitely apply!

A bit more about me