Chandrashekar (Chandra) Raju

Genetic Development (New Zealand) Ltd - Hamilton

Key Info

  • Master of Professional Accounting

Chandra Raju hails from India, and has recently graduated with his Masters of Professional Accounting from the University of Waikato. Before commencing his study at the start of 2019, he considered his options in New Zealand and Australia before making the decision to study at Waikato, where he could complete the course in a shorter amount of time (14 months) than at other institutions. He also preferred the warmer climate of the North Island.

Chandra chose the Master of Professional Accounting degree to achieve his future plans for advancing his career, having worked in India in the banking and asset management sectors. While the study is intensive, Chandra feels that “the entire programme is structured in a very thoughtful way, starting with the basics then moving from intermediate to advanced accounting topics. The course brings in elements of information systems and law as well, so we can be decision makers not just book-keepers.”

Chandra received a University of Waikato New Zealand Excellence Scholarship, which eased the costs of moving countries and on his family back in India. Whilst studying he lived on campus, and enjoyed the vibrant atmosphere and facilities such as the gym, pool and Wellbeing Hub where he met new people with different perspectives and cultures. He also spent his time when not studying volunteering, helping organisations with their accounting and working as a community patrol member at events around Hamilton.

Towards the end of his degree, Chandra found a role at Genetic Development (New Zealand) Ltd, a Hamilton livestock company, through Student Job Search. While the role was initially 20 hours a week, it became a full-time role once Chandra completed his study. Initially he was assisting the Chief Financial Officer with daily admin tasks, but now he has become fully immersed in the company’s Finance function.

Some of Chandra’s key responsibilities at Genetic Development (New Zealand) Ltd include performing accounting functions like invoicing, managing debtors and creditors, administering payroll, PAYE, GST, as well as contacting farmers in regards to their herd characteristics and maintaining files on farmers and stock.

Chandra is enjoying putting the technical aspects of the course into practice, and was keen to stay in Hamilton as he loves its vibrance, smaller population and warm weather (some of the time!). Each of his classes have contributed to his work in some way, whether it’s specialised aspects such as intercompany transactions, job codes and cost allocations, understanding legal contracts, organisational behaviour and teamwork or understanding why certain business decisions are made. Gaining some knowledge of Xero from his lecturers and tutors meant Chandra was work-ready, and the internship paper gave him the opportunity to start building a network here in New Zealand and start establishing his career.

As the company provides an essential service Chandra has worked through the Covid-19 lockdown period, mostly working from home with a few days in the office as permitted. This meant it felt more like ‘business as usual’, and like most people, most of his interactions were via phone, email or Zoom.

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