d0288
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I'm a 30 year old accounts assistant. After a career change from teaching/arts, i ended up working through operations into an accounts assistant role, assisting with management accounts.

My goal was to apply for ACA training contracts to speed up my career, but i have written off this idea now being married and having a child (i thought i would be able to cope). I have no exam exemptions and i have weighed up that the time it would take to study ACCA and the low salaries along the way would not justify the effort.

I'm looking for alternative careers within Financial Services but something where it will pay well and not have to study. I am interested in just about every area of business/finance and economics, so i won't limit there, however, i really need to start earning 50K plus in the next 2-3 years, sitting at the 30K mark is just not supporting my family enough and i'm finding the job is not allowing me to reach my full potential.

I'm a solutions driven and analytical person, so a career as a Business Analyst seems like a match, but it seems the salaries are quite low (mid 30s to low 40s) and i'm not sure where it progresses from there?

I don't mind small qualifications like prince 2, but i really can't take on massive qualifications like ACCA or CIMA.

I feel really stuck and desperate to get my career on the right track, so any advice would be really appreciated.
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studentqueries
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(Original post by d0288)
I'm a 30 year old accounts assistant. After a career change from teaching/arts, i ended up working through operations into an accounts assistant role, assisting with management accounts.

My goal was to apply for ACA training contracts to speed up my career, but i have written off this idea now being married and having a child (i thought i would be able to cope). I have no exam exemptions and i have weighed up that the time it would take to study ACCA and the low salaries along the way would not justify the effort.

I'm looking for alternative careers within Financial Services but something where it will pay well and not have to study. I am interested in just about every area of business/finance and economics, so i won't limit there, however, i really need to start earning 50K plus in the next 2-3 years, sitting at the 30K mark is just not supporting my family enough and i'm finding the job is not allowing me to reach my full potential.

I'm a solutions driven and analytical person, so a career as a Business Analyst seems like a match, but it seems the salaries are quite low (mid 30s to low 40s) and i'm not sure where it progresses from there?

I don't mind small qualifications like prince 2, but i really can't take on massive qualifications like ACCA or CIMA.

I feel really stuck and desperate to get my career on the right track, so any advice would be really appreciated.
Have you thought about the AAT qualification? It is a very respectable qualification that has a high earning potential, but it is no where near as time consuming as ACA/ACCA/CIMA. I studied this one day a week at a local college for a cost of about £2k per year, but my friend studied it online for about £700 a year through ICS Learn. It's a very flexible course and the content is pretty easy. You will be a qualified Accounting Technician by the end of it. You could have the whole thing completed in a year to a year and a half if you were motivated.

Also if you do AAT, that gives you exemptions for some of the ACA exams, so that would make it a bit easier if you did decide you wanted to do ACA
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ajj2000
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You could try project management as quicker way to rise the food chain, but I'd guess if you are already earning £30k you might want to look again at ACCA/ CIMA which you stick with your current job as a way to progress.
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d0288
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(Original post by studentqueries)
Have you thought about the AAT qualification? It is a very respectable qualification that has a high earning potential, but it is no where near as time consuming as ACA/ACCA/CIMA. I studied this one day a week at a local college for a cost of about £2k per year, but my friend studied it online for about £700 a year through ICS Learn. It's a very flexible course and the content is pretty easy. You will be a qualified Accounting Technician by the end of it. You could have the whole thing completed in a year to a year and a half if you were motivated.

Also if you do AAT, that gives you exemptions for some of the ACA exams, so that would make it a bit easier if you did decide you wanted to do ACA
You make a good point and this would probably be my best option if i decide to stick it out with the accounting route. I can't feasibly see myself switching to ACA later because i would have to take a big drop in pay and start as a trainee on a contract.

I'm still concerned about the long term level of pay for AAT even if qualified. The bigger salaries in accounting seem to be in management and I'm not sure if i would qualify with those roles if i'm not ACCA/ACA/CIMA.
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d0288
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(Original post by ajj2000)
You could try project management as quicker way to rise the food chain, but I'd guess if you are already earning £30k you might want to look again at ACCA/ CIMA which you stick with your current job as a way to progress.
Because of the way i transferred in I was able to score a good salary for an accounts assistant, but hearing about the general salaries for PQ's in my company, it's likely i will be stuck in mid 30's for PQ and low 40's once qualified. At the pace i'm currently making with family responsibilities, i don't see myself completing ACCA for another 5-7 years.
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ICAEW Careers
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(Original post by d0288)
I'm a 30 year old accounts assistant. After a career change from teaching/arts, i ended up working through operations into an accounts assistant role, assisting with management accounts.

My goal was to apply for ACA training contracts to speed up my career, but i have written off this idea now being married and having a child (i thought i would be able to cope). I have no exam exemptions and i have weighed up that the time it would take to study ACCA and the low salaries along the way would not justify the effort.

I'm looking for alternative careers within Financial Services but something where it will pay well and not have to study. I am interested in just about every area of business/finance and economics, so i won't limit there, however, i really need to start earning 50K plus in the next 2-3 years, sitting at the 30K mark is just not supporting my family enough and i'm finding the job is not allowing me to reach my full potential.

I'm a solutions driven and analytical person, so a career as a Business Analyst seems like a match, but it seems the salaries are quite low (mid 30s to low 40s) and i'm not sure where it progresses from there?

I don't mind small qualifications like prince 2, but i really can't take on massive qualifications like ACCA or CIMA.

I feel really stuck and desperate to get my career on the right track, so any advice would be really appreciated.
Hi d0288,

We understand the pressure to make money, as quickly as you can.

Our apprenticeships will allow you to earn while you learn and will help you progress in accountancy.

Apprenticeships we offer include the Level 4 (equivalent to a foundation degree) and a level 7 (equivalent to a masters degree).


Take a look at the latest apprenticeship opportunities that are available on ICAEW Training Vacancies.

We wish you all the best in your career and the path you choose.

Regards,
ICAEW
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