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accounting technician apprenticeship...advice?

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  • 28-08-2016 3:25pm
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 1


    Hey Everyone, was hoping for a bit of advice on this course of study/work. The accounting technician apprenticeship....(new user so cant attach urls)

    accountingtechnicianapprenticeship.ie/

    Bit of background about me...already have a couple of science degrees, would be considered a mature student, and accountancy would basically be a new direction for me.

    For people in the know,
    1) Would they recommend this course? (2 years of actually getting paid is far more attractive than 3+ years of paying for college degree, also, having experience counts for a LOT these days!)

    2) They state on the website that you would be employed at a junior/trainee rate of pay/salary. Am I correct that this is around the 20k mark?

    3) Would previous job experience (albeit largely unrelated beyond the basics of science/maths), have any impact on starting pay? (I only ask this as the minimum requirements for the apprenticeship appears to be leaving cert)

    4) Would doing this apprenticeship have any detrimental impact? (i.e it would preclude me from certain exams, certain career routes etc)

    5) If you were/are an employer, does this course sound attractive? Would you place priority/preference on other courses of study?

    Its a new area to me so perhaps some of my questions are silly, sorry! Anyway, thanks for any help!


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 325 ✭✭tanit


    dibblydown wrote: »
    Hey Everyone, was hoping for a bit of advice on this course of study/work. The accounting technician apprenticeship....(new user so cant attach urls)

    accountingtechnicianapprenticeship.ie/

    Bit of background about me...already have a couple of science degrees, would be considered a mature student, and accountancy would basically be a new direction for me.

    For people in the know,
    1) Would they recommend this course? (2 years of actually getting paid is far more attractive than 3+ years of paying for college degree, also, having experience counts for a LOT these days!)

    2) They state on the website that you would be employed at a junior/trainee rate of pay/salary. Am I correct that this is around the 20k mark?

    3) Would previous job experience (albeit largely unrelated beyond the basics of science/maths), have any impact on starting pay? (I only ask this as the minimum requirements for the apprenticeship appears to be leaving cert)

    4) Would doing this apprenticeship have any detrimental impact? (i.e it would preclude me from certain exams, certain career routes etc)

    5) If you were/are an employer, does this course sound attractive? Would you place priority/preference on other courses of study?

    Its a new area to me so perhaps some of my questions are silly, sorry! Anyway, thanks for any help!

    Question 1: Yes I would totally recommend this course regardless of whether you want to continue studying towards a full blown accountant or just staying as a technician. I think it's a great certification and very much needed in most businesses.

    Question 2: About the salary I have no idea but I assume depending on the city you might get 20,000 or more like minimum wage at least the 1st year

    Question 3: So long as the experience is not accountancy related I don't think it would have any impact on pay. This is a professional qualification and it's all about the experience on the job you have. It cannot be any type of experience it has to be accounts or accounts related experience. I would be very surprise if it's otherwise.

    Question 4: I truly doubt it will have any detrimental impact, if you want to pursue an accountancy qualification it's one of the first and in my opinion best steps. That said you can jump directly in your situation to any Professional Qualification right now. Even if you don't have any exemptions with any body you can go in directly the only problem would be paying for the courses. If you apply through the milkround to any of the firms that do it the "traditional way" they will pay for the fees and you will work and attend lectures out of work hours. You can read more about the milkround in CAI's website but it applies to all the professional qualifications CPA, ACCA and CIMA (if you prefer or like better Management Accountancy). This route is usually in what is considered "practice".
    The situation in "industry" and small accountancy practices is that you usually go to work and pay for your fees or most of your fees and have to get/use your holidays as "Study Leave". They might be flexible if you need to do something related to your studies during working hours, but it's definitely going to depend on the place.
    The issue of non-accounting previous working experience might be more relevant/useful if you try the full blown professional route.

    Question 5: This is one is the trickiest one. In Dublin there is a good demand for Accounting Technicians and outside Dublin in Cork and similar cities as well. That also goes for big companies, they know and they value the qualification. But in small companies/cities you are going to have to explain what it is about. The best would be to connect it with both the professional qualification of accountant (you are not an accountant but a technician) and with the National Qualification Framework (after two years you are level 6 which is the same level as an Higher Certificate in College (2 years in college), a good bookkeeping course would be level 5)


  • Registered Users Posts: 7 t....d


    dibblydown wrote: »
    Hey Everyone, was hoping for a bit of advice on this course of study/work. The accounting technician apprenticeship....(new user so cant attach urls)

    accountingtechnicianapprenticeship.ie/

    Bit of background about me...already have a couple of science degrees, would be considered a mature student, and accountancy would basically be a new direction for me.

    For people in the know,
    1) Would they recommend this course? (2 years of actually getting paid is far more attractive than 3+ years of paying for college degree, also, having experience counts for a LOT these days!)

    2) They state on the website that you would be employed at a junior/trainee rate of pay/salary. Am I correct that this is around the 20k mark?

    3) Would previous job experience (albeit largely unrelated beyond the basics of science/maths), have any impact on starting pay? (I only ask this as the minimum requirements for the apprenticeship appears to be leaving cert)

    4) Would doing this apprenticeship have any detrimental impact? (i.e it would preclude me from certain exams, certain career routes etc)

    5) If you were/are an employer, does this course sound attractive? Would you place priority/preference on other courses of study?

    Its a new area to me so perhaps some of my questions are silly, sorry! Anyway, thanks for any help!
    Hi
    Was just wondering, did you get the apprenticeship??


  • Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 19,240 Mod ✭✭✭✭L.Jenkins


    dibblydown wrote: »
    ...For people in the know,
    1) Would they recommend this course? (2 years of actually getting paid is far more attractive than 3+ years of paying for college degree, also, having experience counts for a LOT these days!)...

    I'm currently studying a 1 year CPA Cert in Business and Accounting. While it technically doesn't pay (I'm on Social :(), I would hope I can obtain a training contract upon completion, that would pay.

    So, I appreciate the questions you've asked.


  • Registered Users Posts: 8 NoreenB


    I'm actually doing the apprenticeship at the moment,the rate of pay is minimum wage-€9.25,but it's whatever the employer decided. I'm currently on minimum wage but spoke to my employer who said if I pass my first year exams,without having any repeats he'll raise it to €25k per year. (nearly 7k more!) I'm getting fantastic experience in the workplace and my employer thinks it's a bit unfair to be on minimum wage when I'm doing the same work as people just out of college (albeit with a degree behind them),I have the same level of responsibility though so it does make sense to raise the wage for me....then again I'm hardly going to complain!

    The only thing about the apprenticeship is that it's really geared to school leavers,rather than mature students. I've worked as a manager in my previous job but I'm at square one here,and treated like that also.

    Any more questions re the course,dont hesitate to give me a shout!


  • Registered Users Posts: 2 ruthieoc81


    Hi Noreen,
    I am currently in 2nd year of the course and looking for experience... My backround is cheffing. Do you know of any jobs going? Thanks!


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  • Registered Users Posts: 2 dibblydown2


    Finally got back round to the thread I started! Thanks for the info Tanit, and Noreen too, very useful all round. Apologies for (mega) delayed response. Didn't go any further with the apprenticeship afterall, but giving it serious consideration again for next september.

    Specifically for you, Noreen, I was hoping you might be able to provide a few more answers, it would be much appreciated. I'm sure others would find the info great too.

    1) When it comes to actually starting the apprenticeship, what way is the job element handled? I.e. is it completely up to you to source a job? Are you provided with a list of potential employers? Something else?

    2) Going on the above, did you find it a difficult process? (I see another poster above was asking for tips on a second year placement)

    3) How Dublin-centric would you say getting an apprenticeship is? Theres a good chance you wouldn't have a clue, but its worth asking anyway!

    4) Any other warnings/tips you wish you'd known ahead of starting? (eg maybe looking for jobs earlier?)

    I'll get around to talking to a course coordinator/administrator soon, but theres nothing like "insider" knowledge! If anyone else has anything to add, that would be great too. Thanks all!


  • Registered Users Posts: 8 NoreenB


    Ruthie,sorry I actually don't know of anywhere looking for people,but contact your course director who may be able to help you out?

    Dibblydown,as regards your questions

    1.The way it works is you complete an application form and send it to ATI directly,they then screen each application before sending them to potential employers,once ATI have sent them on then it's really up to each employer,for instance I was contacted by two employers in my area,I went to both interviews and was successful in one.

    2.It wasn't a difficult process really,the application form is quite straight forward but seeing as it's a completely new industry to the one you're in then it can be difficult to decipher what employers are looking for if that makes sense.

    3. I'm not too sure about that one,although I'm in Cork and we only have 11 doing the apprenticeship here,however it is the first year of it so I'd expect numbers to go up next year if employers find it successful. As far as I remember there was only three colleges doing it,College of Commerce in Cork,one in Dublin and Maynooth (could be wrong on the last one)

    4. As you have to apply to ATI you can't really look for jobs earlier than when the application forms come out. The best advice I can give you is to get you application in as soon as you can,there was three cut off dates in the summer, ie three "rounds" of applications. So if you apply before the first cut off date and you're unsuccessful then you can always change your application form a bit and try again?
    I would also recommend that if you are successful (fingers crossed!) try to get into a small firm rather than the big ones. The big ones look great on your CV but you can get stuck into being seen as cheap labour,and not actually learn as much as you would in a smaller practice.
    The last bit of advice is to try and know as much as you can before going into an interview,luckily in my second interview my current employer just asked me about previous experience in general jobs rather than actual accounting questions. I feel that they shouldn't ask you any technical questions in an interview for an apprenticeship but afew people in my course were asked things they didn't know,which may be unfair but might also ruin your chances.

    Hope this helped!


  • Registered Users Posts: 2 dibblydown2


    that's great, Noreen, thanks! Glad to hear its working out well for you. That's interesting how the application system works, in a good way!

    I still have to get in contact with an administrator, but from what I gathered before, the overall deadline/start is September every year. Is that right? You mentioning 3 rounds of cut-offs makes me wonder!

    In any case, thanks again for the info, very useful :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 8 NoreenB


    It starts in late september,but the deadline would be different to the starting time. The deadline for the application will be different to the starting time.


  • Registered Users Posts: 31 foggyn


    can i ask you if there is an age limit? for the accounting technician apprenticeship? i am 56 i just finished a fetac level 5 in computerised and manual in bookeeping and payroll, i have no accountancy background , i have however experience as a bar and restaurant manager, at present i work in retail security, i know i seem to have chopped and changed, but i do have a talent for figures and would love to do the accounting technician course. im just wondering if my age and lack of experience go against me in obtaining an apprenticeship? would i honestly be wasting my time?
    thank you kindly


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  • Moderators, Computer Games Moderators, Technology & Internet Moderators Posts: 19,240 Mod ✭✭✭✭L.Jenkins


    I'd say go for it Fog. Everyone loves a trier. I can imagine ageism still exists and may go against you, but don't let it stop you.


  • Registered Users Posts: 31 foggyn


    L.Jenkins wrote: »
    I'd say go for it Fog. Everyone loves a trier. I can imagine ageism still exists and may go against you, but don't let it stop you.

    thank you . and i will. i mean ive already started with the level 5 certificate in manual and computerised bookeeping and payroll. so i may as well keep going until i reach my goal. and even if i dont get employment in accounts or payroll as an accounting technician , at least i will have succeeded in gaining some sort of qualification . i might even go ahead and do the honours degree in accounting at gmit , which i believe is a good degree to have . the degree will look good framed on my mantle piece if nothing else :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 325 ✭✭tanit


    foggyn wrote: »
    thank you . and i will. i mean ive already started with the level 5 certificate in manual and computerised bookeeping and payroll. so i may as well keep going until i reach my goal. and even if i dont get employment in accounts or payroll as an accounting technician , at least i will have succeeded in gaining some sort of qualification . i might even go ahead and do the honours degree in accounting at gmit , which i believe is a good degree to have . the degree will look good framed on my mantle piece if nothing else :)

    Hopefully it would look great on the wall in your office. Best of luck :):)


  • Registered Users Posts: 31 foggyn


    tanit wrote: »
    Hopefully it would look great on the wall in your office. Best of luck :):)

    im a very optimistic man with an open mind. so i shall do the course and persevere. if i gain employment within an accountancy firm or office etc, that would be a bonus .
    and thank you


  • Registered Users Posts: 21 jobseeker17


    foggyn wrote: »
    im a very optimistic man with an open mind. so i shall do the course and persevere. if i gain employment within an accountancy firm or office etc, that would be a bonus .
    and thank you

    Well done for going for it! It's never too late! I am currently studying 2nd Year ATI part time while working full time in a non accounting role and I have 4 kids so its challenging...a little younger than you at almost 40 but I've always wanted to do this so I went for it. There is a man in my class in his late 40's who has already got a promotion based on his first year results and we also have a lady in her late 50's. You will always have the advantage of life experience to go with that well earned piece of paper! Best of luck to you :)


  • Registered Users Posts: 31 foggyn


    Well done for going for it! It's never too late! I am currently studying 2nd Year ATI part time while working full time in a non accounting role and I have 4 kids so its challenging...a little younger than you at almost 40 but I've always wanted to do this so I went for it. There is a man in my class in his late 40's who has already got a promotion based on his first year results and we also have a lady in her late 50's. You will always have the advantage of life experience to go with that well earned piece of paper! Best of luck to you :)

    thank you and best of luck with your studies. it will be well worth it in the end doing it part time with children and a full time job is no easy task but perserverence and determination will get you there , and in the end you will be glad of it


  • Closed Accounts Posts: 3 Brian Talty


    My mother told me of nepotism that happened a while back in accounting in GMIT. It's not documented bu GMIT should be aware of nepotism and bell curving people. Statistics rhymes with nipsticks.


  • Registered Users Posts: 1 CizzyD


    Hi, I've applied for this course and I'm waiting for an interview. For those of you who have done this apprenticeship how long did it take to get an interview? I did the telephone interview about 5 weeks ago and got confirmation from them about a month ago that I was successful and through to the last round.


  • Registered Users Posts: 9 jimny


    Hi guys, I have a few questions about this apprenticeship, this seems to be the only thread on boards with an ongoing discussion about the apprenticeship from what I can see so hopefully I can get a few replies here.
    Would love feedback / thoughts from anyone who has completed or is currently doing the Accounting Technician Apprenticeship or anyone who has applied this year or knows anything about accounting on the following:
    1. The application has three questions this year (don't know if it was the same for previous years)  1) What do you know about the Accounting Technician Apprenticeship Programme? 2) What motivates you to make an application to start a career in accountancy? 3) What are your long term career goals?
    Obviously the answers to these questions needs to come directly from the applicant, what I'd like to know though is how much elaboration is necessary/ will suffice for question 1? what I know is as much information as is available on the website or online in general so how in-depth do I go with the answer. Do I simply paraphrase the website or how do I acquire additional information about the programme?
    For question 2 ( I should probably give a little background info about me first, I will be applying as a mature student, I have completed 3 years of a full-time college course which I have dropped out of,  I have no accounting experience or any real knowledge of accounting,  I have worked in a job which has nothing to do with what I studied at college or accounting. This would be a complete change for me.) what I would like to know is,  how motivated/ interested do I need to be? I'm partially motivated by the fact that I want an indoor job in a static location where I work from a computer, obviously there are several jobs like that but I'm also a numbers person, I like numbers. I don't really know what else is a motivation for accounting, what motivates you? 
    For question 3, I don't know the answer to this question. I don't really like the idea of working in the same job or industry for 40 odd years. I don't plan on doing a progressive college course if I were to successfully completethe apprenticeship. Full time college is not for me. I don't have long term career goals. Thoughts? I guess for me regardless of career goals accounting is very practical and useful for life in general, does that make sense?
    2. I'd also like to know how tough is the programme?  I did the leaving cert 6 years ago so this probably isn't relevant but would I be all good to do this apprenticeship having got a B3 in higher maths and 450 points overall? Since then I've had no real maths education, my college course had no maths or anything related to accounting.
    3. Also,  the website gives no exact deadline / cut-off for when to apply by, it just says applications open to late August,  so how soon realistically should I get the application in?
    4. The application looks for work experience if relevant so should I list irrelevant work experience as I have no relevant experience? Do I explain employment gaps on the application or at the screening stage, there doesn't seem to be a section for this on the application form. What do they what to know? 
    5. Similarly, they look for educational transcripts, will copies of end of year results suffice or should I requestactual transcripts? 
    Thanks in advance for any thoughts. Any additional information you might have would be very much appreciated. Any mature students out there applying/ applied this year?


  • Registered Users Posts: 2 Saolalainn


    jimny wrote: »
    Hi guys, I have a few questions about this apprenticeship, this seems to be the only thread on boards with an ongoing discussion about the apprenticeship from what I can see so hopefully I can get a few replies here.
    Would love feedback / thoughts from anyone who has completed or is currently doing the Accounting Technician Apprenticeship or anyone who has applied this year or knows anything about accounting on the following:
    1. The application has three questions this year (don't know if it was the same for previous years)  1) What do you know about the Accounting Technician Apprenticeship Programme? 2) What motivates you to make an application to start a career in accountancy? 3) What are your long term career goals?
    Obviously the answers to these questions needs to come directly from the applicant, what I'd like to know though is how much elaboration is necessary/ will suffice for question 1? what I know is as much information as is available on the website or online in general so how in-depth do I go with the answer. Do I simply paraphrase the website or how do I acquire additional information about the programme?
    For question 2 ( I should probably give a little background info about me first, I will be applying as a mature student, I have completed 3 years of a full-time college course which I have dropped out of,  I have no accounting experience or any real knowledge of accounting,  I have worked in a job which has nothing to do with what I studied at college or accounting. This would be a complete change for me.) what I would like to know is,  how motivated/ interested do I need to be? I'm partially motivated by the fact that I want an indoor job in a static location where I work from a computer, obviously there are several jobs like that but I'm also a numbers person, I like numbers. I don't really know what else is a motivation for accounting, what motivates you? 
    For question 3, I don't know the answer to this question. I don't really like the idea of working in the same job or industry for 40 odd years. I don't plan on doing a progressive college course if I were to successfully completethe apprenticeship. Full time college is not for me. I don't have long term career goals. Thoughts? I guess for me regardless of career goals accounting is very practical and useful for life in general, does that make sense?
    2. I'd also like to know how tough is the programme?  I did the leaving cert 6 years ago so this probably isn't relevant but would I be all good to do this apprenticeship having got a B3 in higher maths and 450 points overall? Since then I've had no real maths education, my college course had no maths or anything related to accounting.
    3. Also,  the website gives no exact deadline / cut-off for when to apply by, it just says applications open to late August,  so how soon realistically should I get the application in?
    4. The application looks for work experience if relevant so should I list irrelevant work experience as I have no relevant experience? Do I explain employment gaps on the application or at the screening stage, there doesn't seem to be a section for this on the application form. What do they what to know? 
    5. Similarly, they look for educational transcripts, will copies of end of year results suffice or should I requestactual transcripts? 
    Thanks in advance for any thoughts. Any additional information you might have would be very much appreciated. Any mature students out there applying/ applied this year?



    I’m just about finished my first year of this and will head into second year in September.
    My application I put in about a paragraph - you don’t need to go into a full blown discussion. Precise and to the point should do.

    I studied computer programming before this, and had no accountancy background. I don’t find the course difficult at all - your lectures are once a week and your lecturers (well the ones I had) where great at explaining and answering any questions you may have. Put in the work and you should be fine.

    I had an employment gap of about 2 year and didn’t explain it, nor was I asked to. I didn’t have any relevant accountancy experience but I put in my brief work experience and tried to relate it to why it could help in this field.

    As for transcripts - I just gave them my exam results in June when I got them and this was enough.

    Best of luck. Remember this application is what gets sent to employers so make it as professional as possible.

    With no accountancy experience, I still got hired by a top 10 girl so ☺️


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  • Registered Users Posts: 9 jimny


    Hey, thanks so much for this.

    So approx 100 words ?

    There's just one more thing I'd like to know, what motivated the change to accounting? Did they ask that in the interview?

    Are you enjoying it? ☺

    Thanks again


  • Registered Users Posts: 2 Erinroisin


    how long does it take to get a interview call from employer ?



  • Moderators, Business & Finance Moderators Posts: 10,288 Mod ✭✭✭✭Jim2007


    Twenty four hours, a week, a month.... it really depends on the employer, their procedures and their need. That is assuming they are interested in you in the first place.



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