"Qualified"

Neillaw
Neillaw MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 307 Dedicated contributor ? ? ?
This may come across as a Friday gripe!

I recently had an interview with a local engineering company who didn't put me through to the next round (this isn't the gripe).

The reason for this was due to "Not being qualified."

Apparently they considered that being AAT qualified wasn't enough to deal with the banks.

Decision taken by MD - non accounting and FD - not qualified.


I was just wondering if anyone else has come across this kind of thing.

Neil

Comments

  • Londina
    Londina MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 814
    I get this very often. The AAT always says that our qualification is so valued by employers and yet everytime they consider you not enough qualified or for junior roles....
  • reader
    reader MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 1,037
    Neillaw wrote: »
    This may come across as a Friday gripe!

    I recently had an interview with a local engineering company who didn't put me through to the next round (this isn't the gripe).

    The reason for this was due to "Not being qualified."

    Apparently they considered that being AAT qualified wasn't enough to deal with the banks.

    Decision taken by MD - non accounting and FD - not qualified.


    I was just wondering if anyone else has come across this kind of thing.

    Neil

    If you look at the reed website a lot of the senior jobs out there require the candidate to be ACCA qualified (or at least part qualified). If you want a senior role in accounts these days I would argue you need ACCA (and if you want a senior role in tax I would argue you need CTA).
  • Neillaw
    Neillaw MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 307 Dedicated contributor ? ? ?
    Yes if the advert states that they want someone qualified then ok, but if someone had taken the time to attend an interview during the day then they should get a valid reason.

    For me ACCA isn't the answer, its like a practice accountants trying to do a set of meaningful management accounts.
  • sun123
    sun123 Registered Posts: 19 Dedicated contributor ? ? ?
    I did qualify in July;Still I am looking to start my accountancy career. Yes I am really struggling to find a place to start.
    I have no idea how many applications I sent. I had enough of with these sorry letters.

    I don’t think AAT is considered as a professional qualification. In one of my sorry letter it clearly says that ‘’ the qualified/part –qualified reference in our advert is to ACA or ACCA Professional qualifications and not AAT. Apologise AAT level 4 does not meet our current requirements’’.
    Had few interviews for trainee and assistants , end up in sorry letter.
    Now I have no idea
  • CeeJaySix
    CeeJaySix Registered Posts: 645
    And yet funnily enough AAT level 4 renders you part qualified for ACA or ACCA - for ACA it's saving me five of the 14 exams. If that's not part-qualified (albeit at the low end) then what is?
  • deanshepherd
    deanshepherd Registered Posts: 1,809
    CeeJaySix wrote: »
    If that's not part-qualified (albeit at the low end) then what is?

    Actually sitting and passing some of the ACA exams maybe?!

    It's all down to context. In practice, 'part-qualified' means you have completed the intermediate stage (or whatever they call it these days) of the ACA/ACCA exams. That's what the employers understand it to mean and that's what the recruitment agencies understand it to mean.

    Any literal meaning is irrelevant in the context of a job advert.
  • CeeJaySix
    CeeJaySix Registered Posts: 645
    Agreed that's how it's interpreted, but it doesn't seem right that someone who has passed the equivalent of the first stage of professional study should get overlooked because of the awarding body, especially in zero-experience roles. I was lucky and found a job in practice quickly, but it's frustrating to see others struggling to do so; essentially for those wanting to work in chartered/certified practices, we might as well sack AAT off, read the level 3 textbooks and go straight to ACA/ACCA if that's all the recognition the qualification gets.
  • deanshepherd
    deanshepherd Registered Posts: 1,809
    As an employer, I get pretty miffed when I want someone at a particular stage of qualification and somebody at a lower level applies. I assume they either cannot read or are just a 'chancer'. I would have more respect if the covering letter (if one was bothered to be sent) stated that they were aware their qualification does not meet the criteria but they believe their skills warrant consideration. I have no problem with that (as rare as it is) and they should have no problem with me saying 'sorry, not what I am after'.

    There are many reasons employers want specific professional body members and they are not always related to how good that person might actually be in the job. I, for example, recently recruited an ACCA member because I do not currently have one within the firm. I am sure there are plenty of AAT members who could do an equally good job day-to-day but having a chartered accountant on the team was worthy of me excluding any applicant who was not ACCA.

    That said, if an employer advertises for a part-qualified chartered accountant to fulfil a 'zero-experience role' then they deserve all the chancers they attract!
  • CeeJaySix
    CeeJaySix Registered Posts: 645
    I understand what you're saying Dean, and agree entirely with your frustration of having people who do not meet the job requirements applying. My point is simply that having passed AAT you are essentially part qualified at ACA/ACCA, and assuming the applicant is wanting to continue to complete the professional qual (unless the job description states at what stage you should be part-qualified to apply) then they should not be overlooked simply because their part-qual is through a different body. Ultimately they can get their student membership with the relevant body immediately and the exemptions recognised within a couple of weeks, and voila! A part qualified chartered/certified. For ACCA I know you can do this off your own back and that's a reasonable expectation for someone to do before applying for such roles, but for ACA you have to have the training contract first. As above, that person would have been better off sitting the first stage exams themselves (which would remove the choice of doing ACA), despite the fact that they would be no more qualified they would have a better chance of getting the job!

    Poor job applications are another story altogether and there's no excuse for them no matter how qualified you are in any field!

    AAT should be more than sufficient for junior/assistant/trainee roles mentioned above. Yes to go higher ACA/ACCA is almost a must, but we're not talking about applying for Senior positions.
  • Nps
    Nps Registered Posts: 782
    I've always been led to believe that ACCA 'part qualified' is universally agreed to be completion of F1-9. Anything less than this and you are not PQ.
  • Folander
    Folander Registered Posts: 50 ? ? ?
    'Part qualified'

    I don't think a newly qualified MAAT can call themselves PQ as they have only completed 21% (3/14) of the ACCA qualification and 33% (5/15) of the CIMA qualification. Sorry no idea about the ACA.

    I read somewhere that part qualified doesn't exist in the eyes of the big guns, it was coined by recruitment consultants and it has become a normal, unofficial term. It seems that everyone has a different opinion on what PQ is. My opinion is that PQ is in your P's for ACCA and Strategic level for CIMA.

    I can guarantee that we won't receive any clarification from ACA/ACCA/CIMA as recognising PQ's would hit their exam entry revenue big style! They wouldn't want to admit to a mid-point where we can stop, would they?
  • stevef
    stevef Registered Posts: 258 ? ? ?
    They won't admit to a mid point because there is not one. ACCA is a professional body not a suite of stand alone academic qualifications (which is why a BSc and an MBA are offered on route to provide the stand alone academic qualification). ACCA (and CIMA, ACA and CIPFA I guess) is an organisation that people aspire to join, and to join you need to reach a level of knowledge (proved by testing) and achieve a level of practical experience (proved by the PER). The aim is to be a member, there is no mid point, because to stop before completion would mean that you cannot become a member.

    The only recognisable states are: a Student (who has not proved they have reached the necessary level of knowledge); an Affiliate (who has proved their knowledge but not applied for membership); a Member; or a Fellow (a member who has five years experience at a senior level).

    However, some employers for certain posts wish to appoint someone who is already a significant way along the journey to acquiring the knowledge required and is committed to completing the journey to full membership. Unfortunately someone along the the line some one coined the term "part qualified" for such people. This is a bit misleading because you cannot be part qualified, you are either a member or you are not, adverts should state "completed the foundation stage(or other suitale labeling).

    I agree that AAT is equivalent to some stages of ACCA, which after all is recognised by ACCA through the exemption scheme, but the problem AAT members will have when competing with ACCA students part way through the journey process is the ongoing study issue. If an employer wishes to appoint someone that will continue studying to Chartered level, the ACCA student is sort of committed to that (otherwise they will have no accountacy qualification). Whereas the AAT member may wish to study further, or may be happy not to study further and maintain their knowledge through CPD.
    But AAT is a very good professional body and is appropriate for all sorts of positions that do not require full chartered status, or require the special skills that AAT members acquire. There should not be an ACCA or AAT issue, they are complimentary not competitors, but there is a needed role for both bodies in educating employers into the differences and when and how to distinguish between the two.
  • deanshepherd
    deanshepherd Registered Posts: 1,809
    As an aside, for anyone thinking of doing ACCA exams off their own back before getting a job. My advice is DONT.

    I have had a number of applicants who have done most, if not all, the ACCA exams without having set foot in an accountancy firm. These applicants are typically of no interest to me. The knowledge you learn through professional study is reinforced when experiencing real work alongside it. Someone who has done all the exams on their own is as much use to me as someone who has a PhD in Electronics. They have proved a level of academic achievement but are unlikely to know how to do even the simplest of accountancy jobs. However, 1 year from now they will be fully qualified and no doubt expecting a salary commensurate with that qualification.
  • paulstafford
    paulstafford Registered Posts: 126 ? ? ?
    The college where I studied part time for my ACCA also offered a 3 year full time option. It was a popular course with most of the students being post A level school leavers who chose the course instead of a degree. I understood the post qualification employment rate was high. I believe they still have to complete a minimum of three years supervised work experience before applying for membership so can't believe they would expect to earn a qualified salary before then.
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