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As 2015 gets into full swing, the market is picking up, with a rise in vacancies within all parts of the practice market. Vacancies for newly qualified accountants are in the most abundance, with practices looking to cement headcount in a healthier economy.
During busy periods there has been an increase in small and sole-practitioner practice firms recruiting temporary
contractors; moreover, the top ten practices have also offered a number of contract positions to aid them with the workload – a true sign of a growing economy. A more positive outlook for the economy has increased the supply of candidates looking at the job market. It appears that the natural churn has started again, whereby the increase of ‘Big Four’ hiring activity stimulates proportional rates of recruitment from the mid-tier and smaller firms.


Benefits vary greatly across firms. Larger accounting firms offer a flexible package, which can be adjusted to suit the needs of the individual. These policies usually take the form of a ‘benefits fund’, which is either paid in cash on top of salary or can be used to purchase additional benefits. Benefits include extra holiday, private healthcare, retail vouchers, dental care, differing levels of life insurance and travel insurance.
The mid-tier firms tend to offer similar packages of flexible benefits, but this will vary.
Below manager grade, the typical benefits for those who are studying or have studied one of the main accounting qualifications are:

  • 20–25 days’ holiday
  • Pension
  • Life assurance
  • Private healthcare
  • Death in service
  • Study support (for part qualified staff)
  • No overtime.




Newly Qualified ACAs

Yorkshire & the
North East



North West



Midlands & East



South Coast



South West & Wales



Greater London



Source: Michael Page, 2014 Salary Survey.

About the Author

  • Name: James Skeath

James Skeath is a Consultant for Michael Page Finance

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