Amanda Meyer is Professor of Accountancy at Aberdeen’s Robert Gordon University (RGU), voted Best Modern University 2012 by The Sunday Times.
With Scottish Apprenticeship Week 2012 on the horizon, Professor Meyer explains why alternative routes such as apprenticeships are more important than ever when it comes to getting school-leavers into rewarding careers:
“Interestingly, unlike many other professional accounting bodies around the world, access to training for the UK based bodies such as CIMA, ACCA, ICAEW and ICAS, is not restricted to graduates. School leaver options are available for many of the UK based professional bodies, either directly or through access programmes such as AAT.
“School leavers are therefore now faced with a real choice and I suspect that the educational landscape for professional accountancy training will change quite significantly over the next few years.”
Read Professor Meyer’s article in full at AAT Comment
AAT is an ideal way to start a career in accountancy. Whether you’re looking for an alternative to university or want to earn as you learn with an apprenticeship. You can begin your career in accountancy with AAT in five easy steps.
Employers: Are you interested in recruiting an AAT apprentice straight from school?
Although there are more people struggling to get into college, university or employment, they can be hard to find.
We’ve put together seven tips to help you find someone like Gemma Oliver, our AAT student case study pictured above:
1. Get the timing right: School leavers operate on a different time table to graduates and most will be making their decisions this autumn about whether to apply to college or accept university places.
If you want to attract the best talent to your scheme then it is important to engage with schools from August to February in the run up to your 2012 recruitment or you will have to wait until the results are out in August to pick up those who don’t get their first choice.
Lastly, the summer is also a good time to advertise in Further Education colleges and with university careers services to pick up one of the many students every year who have decided further academic study isn’t for them after all.
Here’s an update on news relevant to accredited AAT employers as at spring 2011.
AAT Jobs: don’t forget that accredited employers can advertise their trainee vacancies for free on the AAT Jobs site. With over 200 prospective students registered in Scotland, this is a great place to attract applicants for your AAT training positions.
Employers: Are you looking to take on a school leaver to progress through a government funded AAT place?
Kaplan Financial are running their 2nd annual summer school this year between July 26th – 29th 2011, and have been working with schools all over Scotland to recruit the very best students to attend. This takes a large part of the burden of finding a suitable school leaver off employers’ hands.
Name: Gemma Oliver
“When representatives from RSM Tenon did a presentation on AAT, Gemma Oliver was confident it was the best qualification and career route into accountancy for her. In July 2008, age 17, Gemma left school and applied for an apprenticeship with RSM Tenon, an accountancy firm with offices throughout the UK. She works at the branch based in Grangemouth, Stirlingshire.
“University had never appealed to me because I didn’t think a degree would provide me with practical skills needed for the workplace. When I found out about AAT, I thought it was a great opportunity because it meant I would be able to gain valuable work experience, earn money and achieve a professional qualification – all without going to university.
“Gemma has been studying AAT on day release at college and sat her final AAT exams in June this year. She is the only AAT student in her department, however six others are working towards a chartered qualification. This is very inspiring to Gemma and she hopes to become a chartered accountant herself either with ACCA or ICAS.
“Studying AAT has meant that I have more understanding to why I would do something a certain way. My own technical ability increased, which in turn has improved my performance in my day to day job. I would recommend a vocational qualification as a route into accountancy because it prepares you for the future in a way that university isn’t able to. Everything that you learn at college is then put into practice within the workplace.”
If you’re an AAT student who would be interested in telling us how AAT has helped you, drop us a line at email@example.com
Here’s an update on the funding that is currently available in Scotland in 2011.
For further information on all of these schemes, please contact Skills Development Scotland, Glasgow Commonwealth Apprenticeship Initiative, Glasgow Commonwealth Job Fund or your local AAT training provider.