Liliana Registered Posts: 39 Regular contributor ⭐ ? ⭐
I currently work for a practice of accountants as an AAT trainee and I have been working in this company for around about 9 months.
I thought that being in an accountancy firm I would have the training that an industry firm does not provide. It seems that I am wrong or my company is different. I would like to ask anyone that works in an accountancy firm, what kind of training do they have? Is it all rounds training? i.e. are you trained to do all the round accounts? Tax? Audit? Sole trader accounts? And is this training planned ahead by your mentor if you have one? Or do you spend time waiting for the work to come to you?
I don’t know how it’s meant to work, but I would like to know, or have an idea of how it’s meant to work so I can possibly speak with my boss about this.
At the moment I struggle with the unorganised time management that I have been provided... my “mentor” or line manager (not sure if I have one or if I am meant to have one!) recently all he has given me is sole trader accounts, until I asked him if I could also do tax work, so I could be trained, so today he has given me several certificates for dividends for me to input onto to the pc... well, I had to wait for him to give me the explanation on what I had in my hands, for which I had to wait 1h30mn for him to come back to me... I was in despair... basically in the afternoon when I finished he gave me 6 sheets with clients names and year ends for me to input them and update them on the system (these were since 2006 clients that need updating on the system).
So I am wondering if my training is a mixture of admin and accounts, because I felt like he had enough of me asking for things to do and so gives me a tedious and boring thing to do that will keep quiet for a long time...
I spend a lot of time asking and waiting for work for me to do...most of this time the company is paying me to be waiting and wasting their money, so I feel guilty for something that is beyond my control...
I need help on how to approach my boss without criticising or blaming anyone, because really all I want is to work and learn because that’s why I have been employed...
Could you please help me, or give me suggestions on how companies do work or are meant to work?
I would really appreciate your comments on this as everyday I feel very demotivated to go to work and that is going to jeopardise my career.
Thank you so much for “listening” and making comments, whichever they are, they will be very welcomed.
Thank you

Merry Xmas to everyone


  • mowzer
    mowzer Registered Posts: 67 ? ? ?
    Hi there

    Can I ask what size of practice you work in, ie national or local firm / how many partners?

    I work in practice in a very small firm. Because of this, I have had the opportunity of experience of limited company as well as sole trader accounts, vat and company tax work, and a lot of other areas which are required to advise clients. This breadth of experience is not always available in larger firms where different departments prepare different parts of the accounts process, so you will get more focused experience.

    However, I have been at the place where I work for over 3 years now, and I remember feeling a bit like you in my first year. It is difficult for your manager to give you more advanced work until you are confident with the basics, and unfortunately the boring 'admin' things like mindless typing are very much a part of an accountant's job!

    As you gain experience, and prove your competence by passing exams, you should start to enjoy work more. The more independent you become the more satisfying the job becomes.

    You are doing the right thing by asking for work, as your manager should respect your initiative. If you are waiting around for work, ask anyone available for something to do. I am currently a mentor, and have to admit it is very easy to get bogged down in my own work, and sometimes need my trainee to remind me he exists!

    It might help for you to speak to some of the other staff and find out about their experiences while training.

    And if it's really that bad..... stick with it and work as hard and quickly as possible through your qualifications, they will make moving elsewhere a hell of a lot easier.

    I hope things improve for you soon

  • Liliana
    Liliana Registered Posts: 39 Regular contributor ⭐ ? ⭐
    Hi “Mowzer”

    Thank you very much for coming back to me.
    I work in a small practice, 2 partners in my office, 4 trainees and 4 managers...
    You say that since you worked in a small practice you had the opportunity to be exposed to both limited companies and sole traders and so on, well, so far I haven’t been involved in that much, but I am taking your advice of focus on passing my exams so I can get more independent...
    Can I just ask something else? How long does it take for a trainee to get verbal contact with specific clients? i.e. start to have a small number of clients?
    Sorry to ask so many questions, but since you were the only one to actually reply and felt a bit like me in the beginning, I was hoping that you might give me some orientation on to what expect... I have tried to ask my colleagues (trainees) but they have been there for so long that they have forgotten what does it feel like to be a beginner.
    Thank you so much for your words, they are very encouraging.

    Happy Xmas
  • A-Vic
    A-Vic Registered Posts: 6,970
    Hi Liliana

    Ive worked for a small accountancy practise for 4 years now and started as a practise administrator (still have the same job title) but as trust and experience grows so will your work load and hopefully your salary.

    Ive found it isnt common practise for you to take your own list of clients as of yet most of the client's will prefer contact directly with the accountant, not saying you wont have any but its the accountant they have hired not the jounior.

    Saying that i myself now handle all the aspects of payroll for the practise and the clients only contact mainly myself regarding this.

    I also have a trainee who i am mentoring and like mowzer said ask lots of questions look around for things to improve or help with yes even filing but show that you arnt afraid of hardwork - trust me this will be noticed not only by your mentor but also by the accountants.

    As far as training goes from what i understand with yours been a small practise this will be done inhouse as well as with what you learn at college.

    Hope this answers any questions if not please feel free to pm me.

    Good luck


Privacy Policy