Okay, it’s another ACA vs ACCA thread!

I have the option to do either, but I wanted to know which qualification would give me more opportunities outside of accountancy/finance roles. Or would they both be pigeonholing me into that sort of industry?



Outside of finance and accounting? why do ACA or ACCA then? Both of these qualification would open doors for you, but only in accounting or finance.


You get either and you’ll in finance/accounting for a long time, unless you want a massive pay cut compared to what you could be getting. I assume that you could go into managerial work or project management work.

In terms of ACA vs ACCA, go for ACA. For more detail as to why see here

In terms of numbers, ACA clearly wins:
More than 84% of FTSE 100 companies have at least one ACA on their board. Of the 20 professional accountants on the ‘2009 Financial Power list’, 75% are ACA qualfied. 55 FDs in the FTSE 100 are ACA qualified vs 5 who are ACCA qualifed (from Accountancy Age April 2009)

Basically, ACA is better respected and more recognised. Hope this helps


Well as mentioned above there is no doubt ACA is a well respected body since it is one of the oldest accountancy bodies out there. However, I would like to point out that ACA requires a training contract from companies listed as approved by ICAEW and in this economy it is very difficult to get one. You multiply that by 2 if you’re not living in the UK.

One of the things mentioned in the article is that ICAEW has a better passing rate and 80% of its student pass their qualification in three years or less. The reason for this is because in ACCA you have a lot of people who are self studying the qualification without going to an institute. This is not the case with ICAEW. One thing more most of the companies have a clause where if you fail your ICAEW exam once or twice they cancel your training contract.

ACCA gives you 10 years to complete your qualification. ICAEW has a clause where if you fail an exam 4 times you start over again from scratch.