This week in our MHC Life Series, we hear from Emma Harmon, an analyst on our New Business Intake team. Emma chats about a typical day and her favourite aspects of her role.
Tell us a bit about you and your career journey to MHC – what inspired you to get into this career?
After college, I worked as a paralegal in a criminal law firm and then moved on to working in derivatives negotiating ISDA documentation. I felt I didn’t want to qualify as a solicitor but I did want to stay in law. Whilst working in derivatives I had to deal with the fund onboarding process. As a result I grew very interested in regulatory work and compliance. I realized that onboarding and anti-money laundering (AML) was an area that was really growing and something I was genuinely interested in. I wanted to move further into AML and so worked for a compliance team in a retail bank getting to work with clients other than funds. From there an opportunity appeared in MHC working with a new team, onboarding clients and ensuring we were complaint with regards to AML. This seemed like a great challenge, and I have been here ever since.
Talk us through a typical day for you
Generally, when I log in, there will be a few queries in the team inbox from the evening before regarding anything from AML to running conflicts on 3e, our billing system. They can vary in complexity, and they will come in from secretaries and fee earners throughout the day. There may also be some matters that need to be incepted from the evening before which we will deal with before the day begins. When picking up a matter, we will incept the matter on 3e, but also carry out a risk assessment on the client and transaction. We then assess whether AML is required and if so we draft a request. If a letter of engagement is necessary, we will draft that also. The process is repeated for each matter that comes in throughout the day, taking turns with the rest of the team. Alongside this, we will receive queries but also AML documents will come in and we will need to review to ensure compliance.
Favourite thing about your role?
In my role within the New Business Intake team, the client we are here to serve is the firm. Along with our duties we try to make the processes involving conflicts and AML run as smoothly as possible and step in where further help is needed. As such, there’s a real feeling of satisfaction when someone is experiencing difficulties and you’re able to step in and find a solution. It allows us to make connections across the firm but also as a team we have to collaborate on a lot of our work, and it’s great to get to work with a group of really nice people.
Progress, not perfection.
What TV shows have you binge watched recently?
Gomorrah. If you don’t mind subtitles, it’s better than the Sopranos. And every season of the Real Housewives ever made. I’m not proud of that one.