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The RSM consulting associate experience

Ria's four months in four questions


It is an exciting time to join one of the largest and most successful technology consulting practices. A "Best Firm to Work For" in 2019 (Consulting Magazine) and the No. 1 cloud ERP solution provider to middle market companies, our business applications consultants, like Ria Upadhyayula, provide providing evaluation, selection, implementation and support of our clients' ERP investments.

Ria is a consulting associate working in the NetSuite practice in our Denver office. Ria graduated from the University of Indiana with a finance degree in 2017 and went to work for Oracle NetSuite right out of college, prior to joining RSM in June 2019. Outside of work, Ria enjoys restoring old furniture to its former glory with paint! After accidentally falling into the hobby by salvaging a scratched-up table with a Rangoli painting, she's evolved into taking on her first commissioned piece!

1. So, you've been here for just four months now. How have things been so far?

While things kicked off slower, I’ve been getting busier each day, which I’m excited about! I've felt supported and been exposed to a number of professional development activities, and I'm also enjoying all of the CDI (Culture, Diversity and Inclusion) activities. I'm actually headed to the Out and Equal Workplace Summit this month in D.C. with our Pride employee network group. I applied for the program, talked to my manager about it, and he was so supportive that he approved my request to go on behalf of the firm in just five minutes!

As part of the LGBT community myself, having that opportunity available to me and experiencing an active Pride employee network group at RSM is great to see. I hope Out and Equal offers me the opportunity to connect with more people like me, both within the organization and across our business community.

2. That's awesome to hear that you're already finding community and development opportunities here! So tell me a bit more about how you found your way to RSM.

I previously worked with Oracle NetSuite, which is a huge, respected company with a lot of opportunities and a great place to kick off my career as a consultant. Amelia, an RSM recruiter, actually messaged me on LinkedIn. I knew about RSM because it's a big NetSuite partner, and I'd heard of a few other consultants making moves between the firms, so I thought it'd be worthwhile to interview. 

While still a candidate for the position, I asked a lot of questions! What's most important to me in a job is sharing similar values with my teammates and leaders. I found this with RSM throughout my experience interviewing, and the firm still hasn't disappointed. 

While shared values were most important to me, I was also attracted to RSM’s geographic footprint across the U.S. and the mobility the firm offers. I like knowing that I could have the flexibility to move back home (St. Louis) or anywhere else across the U.S. as my career develops here. Lastly, I was looking for a firm that offered a role where I had a home office to go to, as well as the opportunity to collaborate closely with a team in person.

3. Thanks for the background. I'd love to hear more about your day-to-day and how you collaborate with your team and your clients.

Well, most of my day is centered on resolving our clients' NetSuite inconveniences! I spend a lot of time figuring out solutions to a variety of issues that users experience within the system and work with multiple clients throughout the day. Usually I'm in the office, but I am currently working on a client's sales cycle, based in Denver, so I’ll work from their client site occasionally. This helps me get to know them better and help them determine NetSuite solutions to business challenges they're experiencing. I like that change of scenery sometimes, but also appreciate having a consulting position that involves minimal travel!

I’m learning a lot from my colleagues - they have deep knowledge of the system and are helping me build on my general understanding. Also, I’m noticing how important our team’s collaboration is to client service and a fulfilling day-to-day for all of us. In continuing to surround myself with people I care about, I actually referred a friend to work on RSM's NetSuite team too! Sam started last week and sits in the cube right next to me. Totally my favorite part of the job!

4. Lastly, could you share with me your best advice for anyone interviewing right now to kick off their career in consulting? What would you tell someone in your shoes two years ago?

Know what you don't like, and know what you do like! Having that perspective and awareness of what you need from your day-to-day is important for finding the right workplace fit. This could mean many things to many people, but for me it means liking who I'm with, how they treat me and having mutual respect!