Duene Visser, North YorkshireDuené Visser, an Assistant Manager, and ACCA qualified accountant at Crowe Isle of Man, relocated to the Island with her family from North Yorkshire in early 2022.
Making the Move to the Isle of Man
I moved to the Island with my young family and our two dogs in January 2022. I was ready to progress my career as an accountant and was feeling unchallenged in my role at the time, so when a recruiter reached out to me about a position at accounting firm Crowe Isle of Man, it was fortuitous timing.
My husband and I didn’t know a lot about the Island, so we did some research, and booked ourselves a trip to the Island with our small children to see what Island life could look like. It became apparent very quickly that the Island was a special place. My husband suffers from quite an aggressive form of Crohn’s disease, which can leave him in a lot of pain and discomfort. Symptoms are varied but can be exacerbated when he is under stress. The Island’s quieter pace of life and beautiful scenery immediately appealed to us for this reason. When we realised how close things were in terms of proximity (including the children’s school, our work and weekend activities) it dawned on us, that he could have a much more relaxed way of life, we could still do all the things we loved to do and enjoy fulfilling careers.
After the weekend visit, we headed back home and immediately put our house in North Yorkshire on the market – it really was that quick! My husband who was a telecoms engineer for Openreach, has since secured a position with Astrea Bioseperations, a BioTech organisation, within their logistics team.
The move to the Island was a smooth one and the Government resources, including Locate Isle of Man’s website, were incredibly helpful, providing us with a wealth of information and useful online resources to help with the move. The children’s new school were incredibly accommodating, arranging their uniforms ahead of us moving, and welcoming the girls into the fold with open arms.
A Fulfilling Career in Accountancy
Crowe Isle of Man were very supportive prior to my move; I had an introduction call with the Director and the firm were great at answering all my questions about the Island. Once in situ, I completed a thorough induction process, which really helped me transition into the role, which focuses on trust and tax. In the six weeks I’ve been here, I’ve had more training than I did in two years at my previous employer! You can tell the firm really invest in their people, and it is already very apparent to me that there is ample opportunity here to progress and develop – both professionally and personally. The firm have also been very accommodating in terms of flexible working - I sometimes have to adjust my hours or work from home, so this has been a huge benefit to us.
Crowe accessed the Isle of Man Government’s Employee Relocation Incentive, which provides a grant towards the cost of relocating an employee to the Island. Unlike some employers who access the grant to cover their recruitment costs, they gifted me half of the funding upfront to help with relocation expenses. The other half I will receive after 12 months of employment - it’s been a great help.
Having More Family Time
Although we moved in probably the coldest and wettest month of the year, we have already experienced so much of what this Island has to offer. What we love most, is how ‘accessible’ everything is here. The children take part in a number of extra-curricular sporting activities. In the UK it would have taken me up to an hour to drive them to their training sessions – here it takes 15 minutes door to door! Sports-wise there is so much on offer here – both in and outdoors. The National Sports Centre (NSC) facilities are second to none, and there are a range of indoor play areas for the children. On the warmer days, we’ve headed to the local beaches, Port Erin beach being our favourite. Having been landlocked in the UK, to travel to a beach of this standard would have taken hours. Now we can take a leisurely stroll down to the beach after a day’s work and enjoy some quality family time together – we are so much more a part of our children’s lives than we had been previously. My husband can walk the children to school with the dog, sometimes he can only manage a short walk, but this gives him some precious time with the children in beautiful surroundings.
Space to Breath and Find New Friends
One thing I wasn’t expecting was how much space there is here – the roads are spacious and easy to drive on - my evening commute home is a pleasure! My commute is semi-rural, and I love being close to nature, and I find a lot of peace and beauty in my drive home. We’ve both lived in overcrowded, big cities, so this is something we relish. The community on the Island have also been incredibly welcoming. From that first visit, the hotel staff couldn’t have been more helpful; telling us about the Island’s history, where to visit and eat and drink out. We’ve become firm friends with our new neighbours, who are also South African, and with many of the locals at the local pub, which is a stone’s throw away from our house.
The family can’t wait for the summer months, to really see the Island come to life – we’ve already got a long list of activities we’re looking to do, including paddleboarding! My husband can’t wait to watch the TT Races too. It’s safe to say, this Island has given us so much more than we had ever expected – and it’s only been six weeks!