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Careers advice for Newly Qualified ACAs

Published on: 8 Jul 2016

Congratulations! You’re almost there, exams completed, hard slog over and contract about to end. Shortly you will be able to apply for your letters. So its decision time. You are working with some great people, many will be life-long friends, but now it’s time to start thinking about the next career step.

Do you stay in practice and progress towards Partner? Or is it time to make your first move out of practice and see what your options are in industry?

There’s no wrong answer. You’re at a unique stage of your career where the possibilities are literally endless.

  • You could talk to your manager about staying on in the firm and ask for their objective view on the Partnership route with your current firm.
  • You could look at moving to another practice and perhaps specialising in a particular area that interests you or perhaps to a smaller firm and taking on a broader role.
  • You could explore commercial opportunities, from large corporates to tech start-ups.
  • You could consider a role in banking and financial services.

But which path to choose? If your options are not clear cut, then it’s time to consider a number of questions:

  • What do you like and dislike about your current role?
  • How many Partner opportunities are there at your current firm, how long would it take, what will you have to do to stand a good chance and are you prepared to commit to all of that?
  • What client sector experience do you have, does that area interest you for a long term career?
  • Do you want to work in London/ Manchester/Birmingham/Edinburgh or will you consider relocation and if so where?
  • What type of corporate culture appeals to you? Large FTSE; private equity backed; not for profit, start-ups?
  • What are the key priorities of your next role?  More money?  Better work/life balance?  Location? Career prospects?
  • Is the industry sector most important, or is it the role and its content?
  • Are you just looking for your next step?  Or a business with longer term scope for progression?
  • Where do you want to be in five years’ time?

When you know the answers to some of these questions, you are in a much better position to assess the opportunities available to you.

We can help you work through these questions, gain insight from our industry experts, and ensure you get on the right career track for you.

CMC Consulting are financial recruitment specialists. To discuss the broad range of opportunities available contact our team – whether you’re looking for Audit Manager roles in London, Financial Controller positions in Hertfordshire, Finance Analyst jobs in West Yorkshire or anything in between, our Recruitment Consultants are experienced at providing sound advice and guidance that will help ensure you get your qualified career off to the very best start – to suit you.

View the latest finance opportunities from CMC Consulting on GAAPweb

Vincent Bowen is a Practice trained Accountant and specialist Finance Recruiter, with extensive experience placing Finance staff with a wide range of clients in Industry, Commerce, Financial Services and the Not for Profit sectors across the UK.