Criminal and Corporate Investigation BA (Hons)View the course
Professional Investigative Practices BA (Hons)*
- Year of graduation: 2018
- Current job title: Fraud Manager
- Organisation / Company: Dr. Martens PLC
- Industry Sector: Shoe Manufacturing
- LinkedIn: Ben Clough
Your University Experience
Why did you pick this course?
“I always knew that I wanted to pursue a career in crime prevention, however, I knew that I didn’t want to join the police due to poor public sector pay and lengthy waits to get into a specialised role. I knew that I always really wanted to work in a fraud position within the private sector, however, they weren’t many University courses that would facilitate entry into a specialised sector besides the BA (Hons) in Criminal and Corporate Investigation. I recognised that they was a huge gap in the employment market for young people working in fraud prevention and investigations. The fraud prevention employment market is saturated with people who ‘fall’ into positions or are ex-public sector workers, I knew studying Criminal and Corporate Investigation at the University of Northampton, would help me penetrate this gap; whilst giving me knowledge and skills to become an expert in my field at a young age.”
What aspects of the course have you enjoyed the most and why?
“All of it! On a serious note, I really enjoyed how the course was taught by John and the Team, they provided valuable insight and experience to all the students. The best bit, I think all of the students enjoyed was, the morning anecdotes from the lecturers’ experiences working in the public sector. This made what we were learning more real and gave us more context on how laws and policies may affect us in our careers.”
Your University to Career Journey
How did you gain the qualifications or experience necessary?
“The course gave me the perfect foundation for my career, I don’t think I would have gotten my foot in the door at my first job after University. The degree gave me the ability to work for one of the UK’s biggest airlines due to my intense knowledge of fraud and investigations. Upon, working within the position for some time, I was given additional investigative tasks due to my knowledge of investigation which I gained from my degree.”
How do you think that your study has helped your career or personal development?
“I wholeheartedly believe that I don’t think I would be in the position I am now both in my career and personally, if it wasn’t for studying Criminal and Corporate Investigation at the University of Northampton.”
Your Current Role
Describe your career progression so far, and any plans you have for the future; are there any particular hurdles you may face?
“Since graduating from the University of Northampton, my career has excelled more than I could have imagined. I gained a fantastic graduate job working for one of the UK’s biggest airlines. I joined as a fraud analyst, which progressed into investigations and working with internal audit. Whilst in this job, I probably faced my biggest moments of adversity, working within aviation during the pandemic was no easy task, especially when the team I worked in was one of a handful of non-furloughed staff. Coming out of the pandemic, I was headhunted for a fraud managers role at Dr. Martens, where I have been given the task of creating a fraud and investigation strategy for the global enterprise, which previously never existed globally for the business. In the future, I want to be a global head of fraud for a global merchant.
I think one of the largest hurdles I face and will continue to face is; I have severe dyslexia. Dyslexia affects me in everyday tasks and at work significantly, despite being laser-focused on my ambition and career dyslexia will always bring me back down to earth.
Undiagnosed dyslexia plagued my life for 18 years growing up, it wasn’t until one of the University of Northampton lecturers noticed how poor my written work was despite having good context.”
Which if any skills and knowledge/understanding gained on your degree are useful in your work role?
“‘The devil is in the detail’ – This was drilled into all the students of the course right from the off and probably one of the best bits of knowledge that was taught to us. Every decision or action I take in the workplace, I fall back on that piece of information. If in a month, 6 months or a year somebody questions my action I always have to make the action behind my decision airtight. That’s why it is always best to capture as much detail as you can and to make sure your action is always recorded somewhere.
Additionally, I think going to the University of Northampton gave me a great understanding that not everyone is like me, UON is such a diverse place to go and study and I gave me the opportunity, to study and work with people of all different walks of life.”
In one sentence, what advice would you give to undergraduates interested in this work eg tips on gaining entry, accessing opportunities, anything you wish you had known earlier?
“Just be a sponge, try and absorb every single piece of information your given both in your careers and studying your undergrad!”
In ten works or less how would you promote the University of Northampton to prospective students?
“You’ll have the best years of your life at the UON!”
In ten words or less how would you summarise your University experience?
“Exciting, Informative and the best years of my life!”
* This course has now changed names to Criminal Corporate Investigation BA (Hons).