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Elliot, Charlotte and Param  Trainee accountants

Trainee accounting jobs across South and South West England

We’ll work with you so that you get the absolute best out of your professional training and development. You will be supported from day one of your accountancy training as you develop the knowledge, technical and interpersonal skills training you need.

Our size means we can offer you big opportunities, whilst still being small enough to care. You won’t feel like a small cog in a large corporate wheel here. That’s why we’re Great Place to Work certified and ranked as one of the UK's Best Workplaces.
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You’ll do well with a trainee accountant job if you enjoy…

Find the right accountancy trainee job for you

Trainee accountant jobs with a top apprenticeship employer

PKF Francis Clark is a Top 100 Apprenticeship Employer. We rank 28th on the Top 100 Apprenticeship Employers list for 2023, compiled by the Department of Education in partnership with High Fliers Research, who independently assess and rank England’s top apprenticeship employers.

The rankings recognise employers for their commitment to employing apprentices, their creation of new apprenticeships, the diversity of their new apprentices, and the number of apprentices who complete their apprenticeships and progress further.

How does an apprenticeship work?

A total of 108 apprentices started their accounting apprenticeships with PKF Francis Clark in the year to March 2023. With nine offices across the South and South West of England, the firm offers accountancy and tax apprenticeship pathways for graduates, school leavers and career changers.

The Top 100 Apprenticeship Employers accolade comes after PKF Francis Clark was certified as a Great Place to Work in 2022 and ranked among the UK’s Best Workplaces and Best Workplaces for Wellbeing in 2023.

An overview of our trainee accountant jobs

Our trainee accountant jobs combine on-the-job learning, tuition, personal development and professional qualifications. As an accounting apprentice, you’ll spend 80% of your time learning on the job and 20% in tuition.

This may be in-person at a study centre or online. You’ll study a structured set of modules and take an exam at the end of each one. We appoint leading training providers to deliver your tuition. We then couple this with our own three-year internal training programme, plus the support of your manager and a mentor, to provide an exceptional training experience. 

Applying what you learn in your day-to-day trainee accountant job really helps to make sense of it all. You’ll be expected to study outside of work too, this varies depending on the individual but 10 hours per week of independent study is typical and this increases around exam time.

AAT accountancy apprenticeships are perfect for non-graduates or with a degree you choose your apprenticeship from our range of graduate accounting jobs. You don’t have to be fresh out of education to apply for accounting trainee jobs. We welcome many career changers, sometimes after decades of doing other things. We value the wonderful diversity of experience they add to the team.

Our apprenticeships comprise 20% off the job learning, full-time permanent job, personal development, professional qualifications - AAT / ACA and CTA, leading training providers and final assessment.

Love your job and live your life.

Our people make us who we are – we encourage a sense of belonging and our warm, open culture embraces people from all backgrounds. We focus on you – whatever aspirations you have, we’ll help you be the best you.

Along with building your career, we understand that making friends and having a great social life are priorities for our trainees. We love to have fun so we have regular socials – anything from boat parties to adventure activity days, team away days and meals out. Our trainees tell us they feel valued from day one, and they are.

What's it like to work here?

Watch now for the inside track on life as a trainee accountant…
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Holly: Training to be an accountant is hard work and it’s not like you clock off at 5, and it’s all done for the day. But there are really good perks to being an accountant, working at Francis Clark means that you can try loads of different departments, working with different people, gaining loads of different experience.

Chloe: We get paid to work and learn at the same time; we can apply everything that we learn in our day to day. Working and training at the same time is really beneficial because it allows you to have access to a range of different people within the office, who have got the knowledge there to help you and support your through training.

Brandon: My team always pushed me forward as much as they can, praising me and reviewing my work making sure that, you know, I am doing the best that I can.

Holly: I’ve been able to work in audit, business services and landed estates. This means that I have been able to try loads of different types of work. With examinations, it’s also really guided me on the areas that I’ve excelled at and really enjoyed.

Chloe: I have regular meetings with my manager on top of our formal annual appraisals who just discuss, you know progress, day to day activities, things that I can learn on and things that I’ve done well.

Holly: The best way to think about ACA accountancy training is it’s a mix of examinations, professional development and ethics. Professional development is all the things you do at work, so training courses; we go and learn about our personalities, our traits, what works well for us in a working environment, and it also means that we get to meet lots of different people as well.

Brandon: The culture of Francis Clark is you know, one big family, everybody is just lovely and welcoming and it’s diverse as well, there’s so many different people. One thing that you don’t expect coming into an accountancy firm is that the people are fun, we have socials and staff parties and everybody’s just really good to get along with.

Holly: So, if you’re moving or joining the area, I did I didn’t live in Exeter before, there’s always loads of people to meet and get to know.

Chloe: The firm are really supportive and caring, provide a lot of health and wellbeing resources, webinars and things like that.

Brandon: I’ve got constant support from the managers, even the partners and obviously because I’m doing my AAT studies, my tutor anytime I need to pick up the phone to anyone their there.

Holly: Nothing is ever too much trouble and when it comes to training that is so important because when your brand new, straight out of university or straight out of school, you probably don’t know what you’re meant to be doing, and I certainly didn’t. I’d done a Politics and French degree and limited work in financial services, and there were so many different areas of business that I found interesting and what every business has is financial services. That means you can work with businesses that work in fashion, environment, economics, whatever it is that you’re interested in, they will have a financial services department, which means that wherever you start or wherever you choose to go with your ACA qualification, means that you can always work in an area of business that you enjoy.

Chloe: My ambitions would be to finish my ATT qualification and then looking forward consider my other options for further qualifications, as I know the firm will support me through that.

Brandon: I just want to go all the way that I can with it, you know be the best that I can be, earn as much money as I can and just be happy in a career that I am enjoying doing.

Trainee Accountant Job FAQs

What does a typical day look like in a trainee accountant job?

No two days are the same in a trainee accountant job. Every client has different ambitions for their business, and so what they need from their accountant varies. We advise on all sorts, from succession planning to complex tax needs, research and development, international trade, employee benefits, and selling your business. Naturally, we prepare accounts and tax returns too.

As a trainee accountant, you’ll need to work from the office most days so that you can learn from more senior colleagues, but over time you’ll have increasing flexibility to do some work from home, in line with the firm’s hybrid working charter.


Is an apprenticeship or uni better for accounting?

That depends on what you want. The pros to doing an AAT apprenticeship are no tuition fees and that you’ll be learning on-the-job and talking to clients from day one.

The pros to going to uni first are that you get to study something you love, and you get to enjoy the university experience. If you go to uni you can go straight into a level 7 accounting apprenticeship, or a tax one.

Anyone who holds the level 4 AAT accountancy apprenticeship can progress to the same level 7 qualifications that graduates start on. All roads lead to Rome and all that.

You don’t need a degree to reach the top of the profession. Do whatever feels right for you. It not unusual for non-graduates to become partners (i.e. leaders) at the firm.


Where and when do you advertise trainee accountant jobs?

We open graduate roles in September and non-graduate roles in December every year. You can apply on our website for trainee accountant jobs in eight of our nine locations. These are Bristol, Exeter, Plymouth, Poole, Salisbury, Taunton, Torquay and Truro. You can see what trainee accountant jobs are currently available in each of our locations here.

We advise applying ASAP after the roles open to secure your preferred location. This is because we make offers as we go with no fixed closing date. If no suitable role is currently available please sign up for our job alerts

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