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Work with leading public sector employers while you study CIPFA's Professional Accountancy Qualification

We have some great trainee and apprentice opportunities available throughout the year for motivated individuals who want to start a rewarding career in public finance and accountancy.

You could be placed with a leading public sector employer on a three year fixed term contract with full sponsorship to complete the CIPFA Professional Accountancy Qualification (CIPFA PQ).

Get in touch to find out more about our trainee and apprenticeship programmes:

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CIPFA trainee and apprenticeship vacancies

Grant Thornton

Grant Thornton - Public Sector Graduate/School Leaver placement

Job details

Job title: Public Sector Graduate and School Leaver placement

Location: London, Birmingham, South West, North West and Yorkshire

Salary: Competitive

Number of vacancies: 100

Starting dates: Staggered - 3 February, 2 March, 30 March

About the organisation

Join us and you’ll shape more than just your career. We believe that we’re best positioned to make a meaningful impact on the economy. Every day, we provide a diverse range of organisations with the kind of business and financial advice it takes to do this. Our ideas and insight empower our clients to make big decisions about the future and unlock sustainable growth. With a relentless focus on quality and integrity, we help businesses, communities and our people to flourish.

Key responsibilities

During this fixed term placement you'll gain a full insight into our clients, our business and life as a Public Sector Audit associate. During your placement you'll experience real client work, learning and development opportunities and you’ll take on the same responsibilities as a first year graduate or school leaver.

You’ll hit the ground running, which may involve visiting client sites as part of a small team soon after you start. From the beginning you'll be expected to get stuck in, develop deep relationships and ask the right questions to cut to the core of your client's business. Being able to see the bigger picture and then focus on the specific client's issues is essential.

Minimum entry requirements

We have a flexible approach to academic entry requirements. We’ll consider your academic achievements, but your strengths, motivations and connection with us and our values are equally as important. We’re looking for people with a broad range of interests and experiences.

Interview/assessment dates

To be confirmed.

How to apply

You can apply directly on the Grant Thornton job vacancies page.

Contact Grant Thornton on or for more information.

Leeds City Council

Sheffield City Council - CIPFA Graduate Trainee

Job details

Job title: Level 7 Apprentice (Graduate) Finance Officer

Location: Sheffield

Number of vacancies: Two

Application closing date: 30 September 2020

Interview/assessment dates: W/C 12 October - online interactive test. W/C 26 October - final interviews, to be conducted online by zoom or similar platform.

Starting date: December 2020 (subject to obtaining references)

About the organisation

Sheffield City Council is looking for two graduates to join its Finance and Commercial Services team, to provide efficient and effective financial and commercial support to the service’s internal and external customers.

The council is offering a three-year fully-funded Masters Level Apprenticeship programme, leading to a professional accountancy qualification through the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA). It will be on a three-year fixed term contract, with the potential to progress within the organisation on successful completion of the qualification.

Role requirements

The ideal candidate for this role is:

  • someone who will be graduating shortly, or a recent graduate, who wants to make a valuable contribution in the public sector, and who is seeking a fulfilling and challenging career in local government finance
  • someone with commercial experience looking to further develop or specialise in financial or accountancy practice
  • capable of producing a high standard of work in a fast-paced and changing environment
  • able to work with a diverse range of individuals
  • can handle the pressure of juggling work whilst studying to become a chartered public sector financial accountant
  • financially, commercially and politically aware
  • aspire to work towards fulfilling the standards outlined in the person specification.

Key Responsibilities

The role will require the successful trainee to commit to studying for the CIPFA qualification, alongside work responsibilities within Finance and Commercial Services, providing support for a defined area of work. These may include involvement in:

  • advice and information
  • financial accounting
  • management accounting
  • capital programme mentoring
  • project advice and control
  • procurement and supply chain
  • internal audit
  • engaging in a culture of continuous improvement across the service.


The benefits for this role include:

  • an attractive starting salary of £26,511
  • a fully funded professional accountancy training package delivered through CIPFA
  • study leave for professional studies and exams
  • a work and study mentor
  • access to the Local Government Pension Scheme
  • access to the council’s flexible working and other employee-led schemes
  • the opportunity to gain experience in public sector finance, working in a variety of areas within Sheffield City Council’s Finance and Commercial Service. The Service is forward looking and has adapted itself to the changing demands of the public sector, and offers a wide range of development opportunities
  • an opportunity to work in a series of interesting and challenging roles supporting the delivery of key public services by providing financial advice and challenge.

Minimum entry requirements

A Bachelor’s degree of 2:1 or above preferred (a 2:2 degree would be considered for outstanding candidates), three A Levels grades A-C in any subject, GCSE grades A-C in Maths and English.

Please note: the person specification within the job description shows the requirements for the destination post at the end of the apprenticeship, i.e. a Grade 6 Finance Officer (unless successful candidates have been promoted in the interim). As such it contains a number of “essential requirements” we recognise that many applicants may not have, for example “evidence of continuing professional development” and “Full AAT or part qualified CCAB or relevant technical qualification or relevant experience”. 

Please do not be deterred from applying by these requirements, as they are not essential requirements for those joining the apprenticeship scheme – instead they will be achieved by successful applicants during the scheme.

Interview/assessment dates

Week commencing 12 October - online interactive test.

Week commencing 26 October - final interviews, to be conducted online via Zoom or similar platform.

The selection process is likely to include:
  • verbal and numerical reasoning tests
  • a written test
  • a presentation on a given subject
  • a panel interview.

How to apply

The application documents and job description can be found on the Sheffield City Council website.

Please complete them and email to:

For informal queries about working in the council, contact:; 07876 863230; 07968 702212

For information about the CIPFA professional qualification route, please see the CIPFA website.