Accountancy apprenticeships - nurturing the next generation of finance professionals

Our 12-month scheme provides an opportunity for organisations to train and develop talented individuals to start a career in public finance and accountancy. The apprentices will be placed with our partner employers to learn on-the-job and gain valuable skills from mentors across the organisation. In addition, they will study the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) Level 4 Diploma one-day a week.

CIPFA's Apprenticeships Framework  

From April 2017, the apprenticeships framework in England will change and there will be wider opportunities for employers to train finance and accountancy apprentices, from technicians through to professional levels.

CIPFA is at the forefront of these initiatives and is developing a range of services to support employer partners and apprentices.

The guidance document below outlines some of the new standards for the Apprenticeships Framework:

Apprenticeship vacancies

AWC CCG, Bradford District and City CCGs


Key facts

Start Date: TBC

Salary: 37 hours, £15,598

Details of the organisation: 

The placement will be providing financial support to a combined finance team that provides financial management for three NHS Clinical Commissioning Groups (CCGs) covering the populations of Bradford, Airedale, Wharfedale and Craven footprint. The role of CCGs is to commission health care services for its population, including acute hospital and mental health services.

Key responsibilities

General

  • Attend scheduled classes at a CETC training centre according to the teaching timetable, including examinations.
  • Undertake additional studies as directed by CIPFA trainers.
  • Maintain suitable records to complete apprentice requirements.
  • Comply with all relevant CIPFA and employer partner policies and guidelines.
  • Maintain the highest standard of quality at all times, dealing courteously with partners, employers, staff and trainees.
  • Comply with CIPFA’s Health and Safety Policy and all relevant health and safety requirements on employer partner sites and their client sites.
  • Assist the principal accountants with closing the accounts as required.
  • Assist with undertaking financial appraisals of external contractors for council contracts, as required.
  • Assist with responses to freedom of information and other requests.
  • Undertake any other reasonable duties of a similar nature as may be requested by management.

Entry requirements

  • Minimum 5 GCSEs or equivalent at grades A*–C including mathematics and English.
  • A-level, AS level, BTEC or NVQ in maths, finance, accounting, economics, business studies or other related qualification.
  • Second class (or above) degree in finance, accounting, economics, business studies or other related subject (desirable).
  • Any relevant previous experience of working in a financially related role (desirable).
  • Skills

  • Proficient in the use of Excel, Word and Access.
  • Ability to evaluate, process and reconcile data.
  • Ability to work effectively as a member of a team.
  • Ability to organise work to meet deadlines.
  • Ability to deal with dissatisfied customers.
  • Ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing.
  • Personal qualities

  • Methodical and flexible approach to workload.
  • A positive attitude, good work ethic and willingness to learn
  • Apply

    To apply you must complete the online application form.


    NHS England (Leeds)


    Key facts

    Start Date: TBC

    Salary: 37.5 hours, £7.45 PH

    Details of the organisation: 

    NHS England leads the National Health Service (NHS) in England. We set the priorities and direction of the NHS and encourage and inform the national debate to improve health and care.

    We want everyone to have greater control of their health and their wellbeing, and to be supported to live longer, healthier lives by high quality health and care services that are compassionate, inclusive and constantly improving.

    NHS England shares out more than £100bn in funds and holds organisations to account for spending this money effectively for patients and efficiently for the taxpayer. A lot of the work we do involves the commissioning of healthcare services in England. We commission the contracts for GPs, pharmacists and dentists and we support local health services that are led by groups of GPs called clinical commissioning groups (CCGs). CCGs plan and pay for local services such as hospitals and ambulance services.

    We have devised a strategic vision for the NHS, along with our partners in health, called the Five Year Forward View. And now, with our partners, we are delivering that vision. This vision shows that we are getting serious about prevention, identifying and delivering improvements in healthcare, redesigning the NHS so it continues to meet the needs of patients, ensuring the NHS is financially sustainable and engaging the public in this whole process.

    We strongly believe in health and high quality care for all, now and for future generations.

    Key responsibilities

    General

    • Attend scheduled classes at a CETC training centre according to the teaching timetable, including examinations.
    • Undertake additional studies as directed by CIPFA trainers.
    • Maintain suitable records to complete apprentice requirements.
    • Comply with all relevant CIPFA and employer partner policies and guidelines.
    • Maintain the highest standard of quality at all times, dealing courteously with partners, employers, staff and trainees.
    • Comply with CIPFA’s Health and Safety Policy and all relevant health and safety requirements on employer partner sites and their client sites.
    • Assist the principal accountants with closing the accounts as required.
    • Assist with undertaking financial appraisals of external contractors for council contracts, as required.
    • Assist with responses to freedom of information and other requests.
    • Undertake any other reasonable duties of a similar nature as may be requested by management.

    Entry requirements

    • Minimum five GCSEs or equivalent at grades A*–C including mathematics and English.
    • A-level, AS level, BTEC or NVQ in maths, finance, accounting, economics, business studies or other related qualification.
    • Second class (or above) degree in finance, accounting, economics, business studies or other related subject (desirable).
    • Any relevant previous experience of working in a financially related role (desirable).

    Skills

    • Proficient in the use of Excel, Word and Access.
    • Ability to evaluate, process and reconcile data.
    • Ability to work effectively as a member of a team.
    • Ability to organise work to meet deadlines.
    • Ability to deal with dissatisfied customers.
    • Ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing.

    Personal qualities

  • Methodical and flexible approach to workload.
  • A positive attitude, good work ethic and willingness to learn
  • Apply

    To apply you must complete the online application form.


    Slough Borough Council - Slough


    Key facts

    Start Date: October 2016

    Salary: £7.50 per hour – 37 hours per week

    Location: Slough

    About the organisation: At Slough Borough Council we are on an exciting journey to becoming a more innovative and entrepreneurial council. Join us – and help us fulfil this mission!

    The Council is embarking on a number of exciting initiatives that will put it on a solid financial footing while delivering services in some new and different ways. Our new outcome based budgeting approach is at the heart of this change and is transforming how the Council rises to the financial challenges of the present and the future.

    The Finance function is at the heart of this change. We have been integral to helping the Council balance its books in a demanding climate of significantly reduced resources. We have done this by supporting colleagues to see the wider picture and help shape the major transformational projects that are underway. The right candidate will have an excellent opportunity to have real influence in shaping this new and exciting future for the town. Using our new integrated finance and human resources system, you will help managers to come up with leading edge solutions focused on delivering the priorities for the Council and reflecting the latest thinking.

    Key responsibilities

    • Undertake a range of finance, accountancy and audit duties, as directed by the employer partner.
    • Attend scheduled classes at a CETC training centre according to the teaching timetable, including examinations.
    • Undertake additional studies as directed by CIPFA trainers.
    • Maintain suitable records to complete apprentice requirements.
    • Comply with all relevant CIPFA and employer partner policies and guidelines.
    • Maintain the highest standard of quality at all times, dealing courteously with partners, employers, staff and trainees.
    • Comply with CIPFA’s Health and Safety Policy and all relevant health and safety requirements on employer partner sites and or their client sites.
    • Undertake any other reasonable duties as may be agreed.

    Entry requirements

    • Qualifications: AAT Level 3 or equivalent (eg A levels in accounts plus maths or economics - grade A-D). Plus GCSE maths and English (grade C or above) or equivalent.
    • Applicants will be screened as part of the recruitment and will need to show certificates of attained qualifications.

    Apply

    To apply you must complete the online application form.


    Southampton City Council – Southampton


    Key facts

    Start Date: October 2016

    Salary: 37 hours, £7.85 per hour

    Key responsibilities

    General

    • To attend scheduled classes at a CETC training centre according to the teaching timetable, including examinations.
    • To undertake additional studies as directed by CIPFA trainers.
    • To maintain suitable records to complete apprentice requirements.
    • Comply with all relevant CIPFA and employer partner policies and guidelines.
    • Maintain the highest standard of quality at all times, dealing courteously with partners, employers, staff and trainees.
    • Comply with CIPFA’s health and safety policy and all relevant health and safety requirements on employer partner sites and their client sites.
    • To assist the Principal Accountants with closing the accounts as required.
    • To assist with undertaking financial appraisals of external contractors for council contracts, as required.
    • To assist with responses to freedom of information and other requests.
    • To undertake any other reasonable duties of a similar nature as may be requested by management.

    Entry requirements

  • Minimum 5 GCSEs or equivalent at grades A*–C including mathematics and English.
  • A-level, AS level, BTEC or NVQ in maths, finance, accounting, economics, business studies or other related qualification.
  • Second class (or above) degree in finance, accounting, economics, business studies or other related subject (desirable).
  • Any relevant previous experience of working in a financially related role (desirable).
  • Skills

  • Proficient in the use of Excel, Word and Access.
  • Ability to evaluate, process and reconcile data.
  • Ability to work effectively as a member of a team.
  • Ability to organise work to meet deadlines.
  • Ability to deal with dissatisfied customers.
  • Ability to communicate effectively verbally and in writing.
  • Personal qualities

  • Methodical and flexible approach to workload.
  • A positive attitude, good work ethic and willingness to learn.
  • Apply

    To apply you must complete the online application form.


    Worcestershire County Council


    Key facts

    Start Date: TBC

    Salary: 35 hours, £7.50 per hour

    Details of the organisation: 

    Worcestershire County Council and Worcestershire District Councils are running a joint scheme to support local apprentices through CIPFA.  Apprentices may be placed at either at the County Council, a District Council, or could be placed for 3-6 month periods across different Councils.  This flexibility of both County and District experience is offered to apprentices to gain a wider range of work experience and will depend on the best individual fit of skills and experience requirements.   






    Key responsibilities

    Placements will typically involve a variety of tasks including:

    • Preparing financial records and statements
    • Estimating the cost of new projects
    • Reviewing budgets and investments
    • Monitoring spending and cash flows
    • Allocating money to projects and departments
    • Analysing the effectiveness of services to the public
    • Managing the organisation's financial systems
    • Conducting internal audits
    • Governance tasks
    • Risk management

    The above list is not meant to be exhaustive, but to provide an overall indication regarding the main duties of the post. The emphasis on particular duties will vary over time according to business needs within the specific organisation the candidate is placed.


    Entry requirements   

    • Qualifications: AAT Level 3 or equivalent (eg A levels in accounts plus maths or economics – grade A–D). Plus GCSE maths and English (grade C or above) or equivalent.
    • Applicants will be screened as part of the recruitment and will need to show certificates of attained qualifications.

    Apply

    To apply you must complete the online application form.


    Apprentice case studies

    Donovan Bradley is 20 from Potters Bar in Hertfordshire and works for the Greater London Authority (GLA)

    "I started working for the GLA in the finance department in September 2014 as an apprentice. I’m currently under the management accounting side of the business accountants unit.

    "The finance department is split into three teams - business accountants, treasury management and capital finance and there are 27 accountants across the three teams.

    "Areas of work are extremely diverse as I have helped and assisted with the areas of communities and intelligence, housing and land, external affairs and resources directorates."

    Harry Emberson is 19 from Sutton Coldfield, West Midlands and works for Nuneaton & Bedworth Council as a Financial Planning Trainee

    "I found balancing work and study hard work - you have to be dedicated. I went to work in the day and studied at evenings and weekends, with one day-release a week to attend college. However, you will get rewarded if you remain focused.

    "The CIPFA Apprenticeship Scheme and the experience gained in the workplace has now put me on the right track towards a career in accountancy. I’d encourage others to take up the scheme as it’s a great opportunity."

    Josh Thomas is 19 from Halesowen, Birmingham. He works at Women's NHS Foundation Trust as a Financial Management Assistant

    "Studying is tough enough, let alone combining it with work; trying to balance the two takes some doing. You need a lot of motivation, determination and will power to balance the two. However, you also need to remember that you are doing this for a reason and it will benefit you in the long term.

    "I plan to become a qualified accountant through the CIPFA qualification by the time I'm 25 and become a senior accountant or finance manager not long after that. My target salary is £40k-£50k."