First National Financial LP

Experienced Professionals

A successful career is a journey

Avtar Sandhu

Underwriter, Residential Underwriting

Where I started:

In 2007, I began my career in the industry working at TD as a financial services representative. I provided investment and lending advice to clients and gained knowledge and experience in credit. In 2016, I was working part-time but wanted a full-time role. First National had an opportunity. I was familiar with the company because my parents had a First National mortgage. I really love my role here. There is a lot of variety and a great mix of collaboration and freedom to work independently. When I was doing my research before the interview, three main things stuck out for me – interesting/challenging work, work/life balance and management that cares. Those benefits have all been proven and validated during my time at First National.

How I grew:

I’ve taken advantage of online courses in First National’s Learning Network and job shadowing to help me develop in my role. I also appreciate the commitment to open communication and value the constructive feedback that I receive. Management really cares, and my team is incredibly supportive. I have been given many opportunities to develop my expertise and hone my efficiency in my role. 

The support I received:

In an environment anchored on positive relationships, I have been able to job shadow underwriters to learn practically. And I have had the opportunity to mentor others and share my knowledge and proficiency.

The First National difference:

The Vancouver office is a great place to work. The people are amazing, it’s bright, and there are so many open spaces for collaboration or just hanging out together. There is a big emphasis on team projects, and I have been fortunate to participate in some amazing initiatives including Arthur update and the Vancouver Wizard Wisdom Team. I feel so lucky to work in a fun environment with people that I genuinely care about and consider family. I am incredibly proud to be a part of the First National team. 

My advice and perspective:

Maintain a positive attitude. Learn from others. Be open to new ways of doing things. Keep an open mind and be respectful of others’ opinions. By listening to other people, you can pick up new ideas that you may not have thought of yourself. Take advantage of the opportunity to work and get along with people from all walks of life.