Head of UK Accounting
Sarah’s job role in 3 words: Analytical. Advisory. Challenging.
Sarah is a woman of many different talents and besides being the Head of UK Accounting at Arla, she also plays the Euphonium in a military style band with which she has performed on both the national and international stage. She is also a keen runner and an ambitious traveler with a goal to visit every country in the world. Her current tally is 51.
8 years of different accounting roles
Sarah has been in Arla for 8 years and during this period she has held a range of different roles within Accounting. When asked about career planning, she says “I have never been one for over-thinking or planning my next steps. I know this is totally against what everyone says you should do, but I like to consider opportunities as they arise based on their merit, rather than having a really clear path laid out.”
Sarah’s current role is Head of UK Accounting, managing a team of three who are responsible for ensuring that all entities in the UK group comply with financial regulations and report timely and accurate numbers in to the group. The job gives her the opportunity to work with many different people around the business and to meet and find solutions to different challenges every day. In this role Sarah is part of the Corporate Accounting leadership team and together with her peers from across Europe she works on the ongoing improvement of the function, focusing on alignment across the countries wherever possible.
When asked what is the key to being successful in this job, Sarah highlights the importance of an analytical and challenging mindset, good problem-solving skills, and the ability to lead others and to influence stakeholders across the organisation.
Understanding performance is key to Arla's vision
Sarah feels a close connection between her job and the overall vision in Arla of creating the future of dairy, she says. “I think I contribute towards the bigger vision in Arla by ensuring that our financials are accurate and tell the story of what’s happening in the business. This allows the leadership to understand our performance and make decisions about the future strategy.”.
Working at Arla has given Sarah lots of opportunities over the years. The business is constantly changing, and as a result there is always something to learn. “Although I’ve done some fantastic formal training with Arla, I would say that I have learned the most from the people I’ve worked with. I could pin-point a couple of managers I’ve worked for who’ve spent a great deal of time helping me with my personal development, and those lessons have been invaluable.”