Blue Wednesday & Steve & you lot in 'the know'- Why so few ACAers?

Hi you two,
I was wondering if you had a reason that so few people seem to take up the AAT to ACA fast-track. I thought it sounded wonderful with only 5 exams compared to 11 or so with ACCA. I was at a family party last weekend when several people asked me "what next, ACCA?", & when I said ACA, looked a bit dissapointed (a couple of public sector accountants included). I've left my last job, where they would only let me do CIPFA, but the place where I'm starting next month wouldn't mind if I did ACCA or ACA. Please could you tell me the down-side to doing ACA? I'm really starting to doubt that what I'm doing is the right thing.


  • Steve Collings
    Steve Collings Registered Posts: 997
    I don't think you're doing anything wrong doing ACA. ACA is a very well respected qualification but the drawback that puts a lot of prospective ACA students off is the fact that you need a training contract to do the qualification. With ACCA, no training contract is needed but the price to pay for that is that you have to have 3 years post qualified experience in order to gain ACCA's practising certificate.

    I chose ACCA because (a) my firm is an ACCA approved firm and (b) I always felt it more applicable to my role in practice because a lot of my clients work in industry and commerce and so I felt that ACCA offered a better balance of industry-related papers and practice related papers, such as audit, tax and financial reporting - though these days I tend to specialise in financial reporting, audit and solicitors accounts rules so I deal a lot with regulated work.

    Towards the end of your chartered studies, you will begin to realise your "comfort zone" and then start to develop your specialisms, especially if in practice. If you work in industry ACA will help you relate your technical knowledge to a specific industry. When I worked in industry all my finance directors were ACA or CIMA qualified (but that was quite a long time ago!!!)

    Best wishes
  • Andypandy
    Andypandy Registered Posts: 526
    Thanks for the reassurance Steve.
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