Life at Deloitte

Career story: Daniel Heckmann

A specialist in technical accounting questions

Daniel Heckmann is an experienced technical accounting professional. He is also a world traveller who moved from Australia to Finland a year ago and joined the Deloitte Assurance team. He enjoys creating new, but also improving existing processes or outcomes.



With prior knowledge and a curious mindset, you can solve any accounting matter for your clients.


A cosmopolitan assurance professional

I was born in Cologne, but I have been living in various cities in Germany, like Berlin, Mainz and Frankfurt. I moved to Finland in late October 2020 after living almost nine years in Sydney, Australia. I felt it was time to be a little bit closer to my family in Germany. My girlfriend is Finnish, so Finland was an easy choice as I can work in English here.

After arriving in Finland and a couple of weeks of settling in, I started to research for interesting roles online. As I have previously worked for a Big 4 company, I obviously also checked the Deloitte website. I found a job ad for an IFRS technical role. A few very interesting and constructive Teams meetings later, I was thrilled to join the Deloitte Assurance team.

Although I started in the middle of a global pandemic, everyone was so helpful, assisting me with any question I had. The working atmosphere is great – people always have time to help each other.


Big challenges and agile processes – supporting clients in IFRS 17 and technical accounting questions

I studied Economics in Mainz. After my studies I started to work in financial services audit – two weeks after the collapse of Lehman Brothers. That was a very exciting moment to start auditing banks.

After spending most of my career in banking, asset management and with insurance clients, I am a specialist in technical accounting questions around financial instruments, fair value and insurance contracts.

I enjoy doing things that create something new and improve existing processes or outcomes. For example, looking at a new accounting standard or requirement, understanding how the result should look like for a client and then analysing the accounting systems of the client to see how the required data for those additional disclosures will be generated. The knowledge and experience from years of auditing clients is very useful for this.

The new insurance standard IFRS 17 is a big challenge for our Nordic Insurance clients. To work on those projects is not only challenging, but also stimulating as you really need to think through the choices in the standard and interpret them. It also involves very close cooperation with Nordic and UK colleagues.


A curious mindset will get you far

My biggest learning challenge is studying Finnish. It has been a bit over a year now and I slowly notice the progress I have made. I really enjoy developing others – sharing knowledge and experience from previous projects with my junior team members and seeing them developing their skills.

As a deloittee working in Audit & Assurance, you obviously need a good understanding of the accounting standards as a basis. Knowing your debits and credits is essential to everything we do. The other important skill is to have a curious mindset. One thing that helped me was never accepting a response at face value but making sure that I fully understand it and fact-check it. With that prior knowledge and mindset, you can solve any accounting matter for your clients.  


Irina Kolesnikova

Daniel Heckmann

  • The duration of a typical assurance project: It really varies. Assisting audit teams all year round, and some other projects are just 2 meetings and an IFRS memo as analysis.
  • The last three industries which I have worked in: Insurance, bank, utilities.
  • How I take care of my well-being: First thing: never stop laughing. Eat well and enjoy in moderation. I keep myself fit with regular exercise, even if it’s sometimes difficult to persuade myself.
  • My passion: I love travelling and cooking. Often, I combine those two and attend cooking classes in my travel destinations.
  • What didn’t you know about Daniel? I took seven months off in 2017 and travelled around the world. As part of this, I saw all of the New 7 Wonders of the World. The most astonishing was the Taj Mahal.

Irina Kolesnikova

Daniel Heckmann
Assurance, Deloitte

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