Anne Milton MP discusses widening of access to the accountancy profession

ICB is hosting a roundtable discussion at the WorldSkills UK Show on Thursday 15 November discussing the future of the bookkeeping and accountancy profession. We will be joined by the Minister for Apprenticeships, Anne Milton MP, the National Apprenticeship Service, ICAEW and Sam Hurst, an apprentice from Accumulus Accounting who is doing his Level III Accounts Assistant Apprenticeship with Riverside Training Spalding. Sam is one of 369,700 apprentices in England in 2017/2018 who has been 'learning while earning' on a government-backed apprenticeship scheme.

Victor Gidney, senior tutor at Riverside Training Spalding says, “the purpose of our apprenticeship training is to transform our students into better bookkeepers and accountants. We do this by ensuring that our curriculum is fully integrated into the workplace once the apprentice has finished their training.”

On 29 October 2018, Chancellor Philip Hammond announced greater funding for apprenticeships for small businesses and released details on how larger levy-paying businesses can use up to 25% of their levy to fund apprenticeships for businesses in their supply chain. These measures will enable the 95% of businesses which are non-levy-paying to take advantage of the benefits of apprenticeships for employees of all ages, ensuring they have the skills needed for growth.

The ICB apprenticeships offer an alternative, funded route into an accountancy career to those individuals who do not have a university degree. “We’re committed to helping a diverse range of people become professional bookkeepers or begin their path towards Chartered Accountant status,' says ICB head of technical policy Jacquie Mount FICB.  'We believe the government should do more to support non-higher education access routes to all professions.”

ICAEW, which awards credits to students who have completed ICB qualifications, is attending the official launch of the ICB Apprenticeships at the World Skills Show on 15 November and states, “We know employers and students value these apprenticeships and we are working closely with ICB to support unconventional routes into accountancy. We look forward to continuing to collaborate with ICB as they welcome students, employers and bookkeepers from diverse backgrounds."