This month, teenagers around the UK opened envelopes containing their GCSE results – then used those grades to help them plan their future. Here Kelly-Anne explains why those who are natural number-crunchers should consider a career in accountancy.
I always say GCSE results are a means to an end.
When you are established in your career, nobody asks what you got for English Literature when you were 16. They don’t care that you flunked your French Oral. Or that you aced the Chemistry paper.
But your grades at GCSE help you decide on subjects to study at A-Level. Your A-Level marks then help you choose a subject to study vocationally or at university. And your degree or on-the-job training then leads you down a chosen career path.
You see - a means to an end.
Today thousands of students will open their GCSE results and take that first step forward towards their dream job.
But what happens if you have absolutely no idea what you want to do?
Well, I wanted to put forward the case for accountancy. Trust me, it’s not a job just suited to boring middle-aged men.
Why choose accountancy?
If you have a head for figures and want a sustainable, enjoyable and lucrative job, then accountancy could be the answer.
Here are some reasons why it’s a job worth considering:
· Accountants are always in demand, both as employees of businesses and as third-party service providers.
Every business must deal with things like paying their taxes and to have somebody with the skills and the knowledge to handle accounts makes this process easier.
· Accountancy can provide flexibility.
While you have the option to get into traditional employment with a business in their accountancy department or work for an accountancy company, you also could consider starting your own business or work on a freelance basis.
· It’s a satisfying career.
Most people want a career that isn't just lucrative but also offers some job satisfaction. Accountancy is a career that can be very interesting, allowing you to solve problems for the businesses you work with and find ways to save them money.
My GCSE results were not good enough
A job in accountancy involves a lot of maths and requires a degree, right?
Well actually, maybe not.
First up, you don’t actually need to take maths at A Level to get into this line of work. You do however, need to take some A Levels. So, pick three that you are good at and enjoy doing. Ideally you need 3 B’s at A Level or 5 B’s from Scottish Highers.
Of course, there is the numerical element to accountancy so it helps if you enjoy number crunching. But as well as a certain aptitude in numeracy, employers are also looking at your ability to interact with people and your problem-solving capabilities.
So… to uni or not to uni?
A degree is the most obvious route into accountancy post-A Level but there are other ways to train as an accountant without the need for the huge debt of university fees.
One of these is working towards a certificate in Finance and Business – a scheme run through the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales - before taking a professional qualification to become a Chartered Accountant.
In some cases, you can earn while you learn too.
In fact, we have trained some of our staff while they held junior positions at KBL Accounts, giving them the opportunity to get hands-on from day one.
We have also offered work experience to school leavers – another great way for a young person to work out if this is the career for them.