Azets, the UK’s largest regional accountancy and business advisors to SMEs, is celebrating its 443 apprentices across the UK as it demonstrates its commitment to ‘Build the Future’ – the main theme of National Apprenticeship Week this year. In total, Azets have over 900 students studying professional qualifications and 443 of them are doing this on the apprenticeship route.

Investing in the next generation of talent is a key strategy for Azets, as it looks to further expand its offer and continue to deliver a high-quality service locally to businesses across the UK.

Azets is able to offer a varied career path for joiners, with the option to work across different parts of the country and to specialise in different aspects of accounting and business advisory, from general practice and tax to corporate finance, trade and restructuring.

The continuation of Azets’ graduate and school leaver national recruitment drive, against the backdrop of the current pandemic, wider economic challenges and the UK adjusting to post-Brexit life, is also a reflection of growing demand for tailored business advice and services, as companies and individuals look to navigate through the increased levels of uncertainty and change.

Azets has a range of apprenticeship offerings but there are broadly two options: the school leaver or graduate programmes.

The school leaver route is a 6 year programme which includes two apprenticeship programmes leading to the student becoming qualified in their AAT and then moving onto their chartered accountancy qualification (ACA, ACCA, CTA or ICAS).

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The graduate route is a 3 or 4 year programme where students study toward their chartered accountancy qualification (ACA, ACCA, CTA or ICAS).

An apprenticeship with Azets and its training partners provides a bespoke programme that combines qualifications, skills and behaviours training. Everyone gets a talent coach, and each new student gets a buddy and substantial amount of on the job training, giving them the opportunity to pave a career path for life.

David Whitson-Black, Group Head of Talent Development for Azets, said: “Despite the current economic backdrop, we remain committed to investing in people and to developing the talent of the younger generation, who will be the business leaders and advisors of tomorrow. Young people have been disproportionately hit by the economic impact of the pandemic, so it is extremely pleasing to be able to kickstart the careers of so many and offer them a bright and interesting future.

“Investing in our people and their careers is a key strategy for Azets, benefiting them as well as positioning the company well for the future, as we continue with our ambitious plans to grow the business and deliver a service of outstanding professional quality, that is both personalised and localised.”

Georgia Hanger, an Azets Apprentice based in the Nottingham office, said: “As part of the apprenticeship scheme I get continued support and funding towards my learning. Azets stood out to me as an employer because they want to help their employees and clients achieve and grow and there are plenty of opportunities within Azets to achieve these.

“I felt very supported joining Azets during a pandemic. As soon as we began to work from home we were provided with a huge range of support ranging from clear communication on how to get the most out of agile working, to providing  us with the correct tools to work from home such as computers, laptops and even desk chairs. Azets gave us resources to help us be aware of our mental health, manage stress, look after our posture and adjust our home working environment.

“I have had continued support with remote on the job learning and my apprenticeship at Azets has provided me with the perfect balance to complete my studies and work full time.”