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:

Already regisetered

If you an employer of a CIPFA Apprentice or a CIPFA Apprentice, make sure you are logged in, and you can then access the relevant portal and view all key documents relating to the Apprentice Scheme.

Apprenticeship vacancies

NHS Lothian

Key facts

Location: Scotland

Duration: 12 month fixed-term contract

Salary: £16,960, 37.5 hours

Start Date: March/April 2017

How the scheme works

  • You will be placed in a paid job, working in a finance department for a 12-month fixed contract
  • You will learn on the job four days a week, picking up finance skills and experience from mentors and colleagues
  • Study for AAT Level 4 Diploma at one of our training centres one day a week
  • Earn a competitive salary (typically Living Wage)
  • Receive a planned training programme and support by CIPFA during your placement
  • Enhance your employability skills in the competitive job market and be ready to take the next step in your accountancy career

Study the AAT Level 2

In addition to our Accountancy Scheme, we also offer the AAT Level 2 Diploma in Scotland. If you’re interested in studying with us then please email with the subject: AAT Level 2

Entry requirements   

  • To qualify for the scheme you must already hold or be working towards the AAT level 3 Diploma, or equivalent e.g. A-Levels/Highers in Accounts plus another subject such as Maths or Economics at grades A-D. You will also need Standard Grades/GCSEs in Maths and English at grade C or above, or equivalent.
  • Office experience preferred.
  • The successful candidate will be required to show certificates of attained qualifications.


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."