Award-winning chartered accountants and business advisers, PKF Francis Clark is supporting the 12th National Apprenticeship Week, by celebrating their apprentices’ success and encouraging school leavers to consider the apprenticeship route to give their career in accountancy a head start.
With attitudes towards higher education changing, apprenticeships are becoming an increasingly popular career path. Research findings have shown that going to university is no longer necessarily the best choice for everyone and in addition to this, over half of the university students that were surveyed had stated that they do not believe that having a degree guarantees a good job.
PKF Francis Clark, who have seven offices across the South and South West, currently have 180 students undertaking training with the firm, 51 of whom are AAT and ATT apprentices. The firm is currently looking to recruit an additional 14 AAT or ATT apprentice students to start this summer across all of their office locations. The accountancy apprenticeship programme is very well received and they anticipate to receive over 250 applications for these roles.
The firm that is currently celebrating its centenary year, offers a comprehensive training programme that combines the technical and professional knowledge and skills to lay the foundations for becoming a trusted accountant and is a fantastic alternative to university. Apprentices are exposed to a wide range of practical experience whilst obtaining a professional qualification via an apprenticeship standard. Once completed, apprentices are then given the opportunity to progress further and work towards the more advanced Level 7 ACA apprenticeship qualification to earn the prestigious title of Chartered Accountant. Currently, PKF Francis Clark have 64 ACA students across the firm with a further 12 confirmed to start in summer 2019.
Ben, AAT apprentice in the Poole office said: “As an apprentice at PKF Francis Clark, I have been given the opportunity to earn a salary whilst gaining experience and enjoying a good work life balance. I am able to continue to learn and gain work related qualifications without the debt of university. The team here are very supportive towards my career and we also have a great social aspect of work- there are always social events to attend throughout the year which bring the office together!”
PKF Francis Clark are also dedicating time to engage and build relationships with local schools, promoting a career in accountancy. The firm is this year hosting a series of apprenticeship evenings across all their offices, where Year 12’s and 13’s and their parents will gain an insight into the scheme that the firm offers as well as will being given the chance to ask questions, speak to current trainees and have a look around the firm’s offices.
Amy Taylor, People Director at PKF Francis Clark said: “Our trainees play a pivotal role in our organisation, we hire young people straight from school or college as we can offer an alternative to university. You can gain professional qualification and work towards your chartered qualifications in a similar time frame to those joining from university, whilst gaining valuable work experience. We love to watch our trainee’s grow within the firm through their technical and professional development and feel proud every time they pass their exams. Our trainees are the future of our firm and we ensure that we invest in their development to create well rounded individuals who are equipped to become trusted business advisors of the future”.