A wannabe seeking advice from current ACA or ACCA trainee or accountant



Could any one give me some directions please?

I have been thinking about becoming an accountant and searching online for a while but I am still not clear where to go.

My biggest concern is my age. I am 32 and worried if I would ever get any placement in the first place. If there is a practicing accountant here, have you ever met any trainee of my age or over? how often?

I gained a degree in business management outside UK about 10 years ago and did a post graduate program in UK 2003, in another business discipline. I have been working ever since in a service industry, but my role is hardly anything to do with business or accountancy. I am pretty sure the accountancy firms would not appreciate much of my irrelevant experience.

I am confident about getting into the intense studying mode again but I don’t remember I loved accounting and math particularly or even worse, I wasn’t really good at them… Would that be a wrong idea to get into this industry? I only started looking at this because (I know this may sound daft) but I recently did some aptitude tests to change career and they all came out as an accountant to go for because I am good at thinking numbers???but I am still worried that I will not be able to make to the end because of the difficulty and levels of study.

I am not looking into joining a big organisation or becoming a financial director in the future but I would like to work in a well established local firm and eventually start my own business or work from home. I just love the fact that it gives financial security and flexibility as a career. so I could rule out CIMA…

Another thing is I am getting decent pay from my current job( not much of future career development though) and I don’t think I could afford to quit to study or train full time. Staying in my current job and preparing leaves me only ACCA route, but would that be enough to attract a future employer as a good candidate? I will try to pass as many exam as possible studying alone but at what stage of exams would be enough on CV to persuade an employer to take me as an ACCA trainee? Would it be beneficial if I take AAT or CAT qualifications at the same time?

On the other hand, If I just give up my job and try to get a trainee position for ACA in my current situation, would that be any possibility what so ever? Would it help if I did AAT or CAT qualification first to put on CV? Would they will then see me at all as a 34 years candidate?

It may be cheeky to ask but how much can i expect to get paid as a trainee either for ACA or ACCA?

I know I am asking alot and I may be misunderstanding some but I have no one around to give me any advice and I would really appreciate any input from you guys. anything will help.

Thank you very much in advance.

If you prefer to PM please send me any materials or information to mintskfk@hotmail.com


I worked witha guy who at 40 left the diplomatic service to come and train as an ACA with one of the big four. He had a double first from Cambridge and was exceptionally bright. He sailed through his ACA exams and soon become a corporate tax specialist advisor.
I also know of career switches from Medicaine, the Army and Law.
These days career changes are frequent and common. We don’t all know or indeed find out what we want to do as soon as we leave Uni. Life is a path of discovery.
I seriously would start by contacting the ICAEW and explain your situation. They will have some career advisor etc who can talk you through things. It probably wouldn’t do any harm to speak to some accountancy firms to see thier position vis a vis mature trainees. It really sounds as if you will have a lot of skills to bring to our profession.
Good luck.


I have heard of people who are 40/50 training but it is rare. 32 is fine

I don’t think AAT/CAT would help much at this point

and a CIMA person can run his own business - it is just that he can’t sign off audit reports etc.

Trainees in London - 25K+
Outside London - as low as 12k starting


hello people. i need some advice. i am currently studyiny ACCA and i have completed my f1-f4. where should i apply for work. can i apply with jus the first 3 papers. i need experience. im stuck in wee to go. i start uni again in sept to finish my acca f5-f9. please advise me further. thank you all…


You wait for some time & focus on study. Is pretty difficult to handle work and study for ACCA