Job title: Trainee Accountant
What were you doing before you started the apprenticeship?
I've been with Dacorum Borough Council since October 2004. I joined the Finance team in 2013 and was promoted to Trainee Accountant in February 2017. I completed my Association of Accounting Technicians studies in December and signed up to the Level 7 Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) Professional Apprenticeship to continue with my studies.
Why did you apply for the apprenticeship role?
I was planning on starting the CIPFA qualification in January, as my role required me to take a professional qualification in Accountancy.
The Level 7 Apprenticeship was launched in December and I qualified to do my studies via this route. I was the first person to sign up to the CIPFA apprenticeship. The apprenticeship gives me extra support from a dedicated CIPFA mentor.
I also get 20 per cent of my working week as off-the-job training, which means I get day release to study and on the weeks that I'm not at college I have a study day instead. With working full-time and having a family, finding time to study can be difficult, but the off-the-job-training enables me to study regularly.
What is a typical day like for you?
As a trainee accountant my duties are split between the two accounting teams within the Council. I have set jobs to do periodically throughout the day/week/month and take on projects as and when required.
The financial year end will see me bringing together work that I've been putting together for the past 11 months and producing final figures which go into our published statement of accounts for the year. It's a very busy time, but brings with it the opportunity to learn and implement some of the theoretical things that I've been studying.
What do you enjoy about the apprenticeship and what are the benefits of the programme?
Although I'm new to the scheme, I've found that having a dedicated mentor and the off-the-job-training is proving very advantageous for me.
What would you say to someone considering an apprenticeship?
If you're given the opportunity, then I would highly recommend taking it. The extra support you will receive for your studies is invaluable. The CIPFA qualification that I will attain is a credible and highly regarded qualification in the sector, so it will allow me to progress my career in the future.
What are the future prospects and opportunities for you?
With this qualification I will have the technical requirements to apply for almost any financial role, depending on my experience. Hopefully, that can be here at Dacorum Borough Council.