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any questions?

Here are the answers to some of the questions you may have about the scheme. If you have a question that isn't answered below then please contact us.


How many graduates are you looking for?
We are recruiting 15 graduates to start employment with participating London Boroughs from May onwards (CIPFA Professional Qualification training will start in August 2019).

What type of role will I undertake?
Trainees will contribute to the full ranges of accountancy and finance work within the Borough and will undertake work placements and formal training to achieve membership of CIPFA (Chartered Institute of Public Finance & Accountancy). A structured programme will be provided for each trainee to ensure their work experience meets the needs of their formal studies.

Who will be my employer?
If successful, you will be offered a four year fixed term contract with one of the participating Boroughs. Therefore, you will be the employee of the individual Borough but will jointly undertake the structured training scheme with trainees from other Boroughs.

Which Boroughs will be participating?
The participating London Boroughs are as follows:

Barking & Dagenham
Kensington and Chelsea

Do I get to choose the Boroughs I will work for? top
There will be an opportunity at the assessment centres to indicate your preference from those participating this year.

I understand this is a four-year training scheme - what happens after the end of the four years? top
There is career progression within the scheme and promotion will be awarded after successful completion of each of the three stages of the qualification.

If you have successfully completed the 4 year training programme you will be in a strong position for Team Leader level roles within your employing authority which would have responsibility for managing a team of 2-3 Finance Officers.

What kind of people are you looking for? top
We are looking to recruit bright graduates who are keen to pursue a career in local government finance and to complete the CIPFA Professional Qualification. This commitment will be tested as part of the recruitment process. Trainees must be prepared to devote a considerable amount of their own time to study and examination preparation.

I am currently in my final year of university, can I still apply? top
We are recruiting graduates to commence employment with the London local authorities from May 2019 onwards, with the CIPFA Professional Qualification training to start in August 2019. Therefore, providing you will have completed your degree by this time, we would welcome an application from you. There will be an opportunity to discuss start dates at the final interview stage.

Are there any age restrictions? top
None, we will consider applications from individuals of all ages.

Do you specify a degree discipline and class? top
We will consider applications from individuals who have or are expecting a 2.2 or above in any degree subject and GCSE in Maths and English or equivalent (grade C or above).

I am disabled, can I still apply? top
We welcome applications from individuals with disabilities. If you have any special needs or are having difficulty applying because of a disability, please advise us and we will endeavour to make any adjustments necessary.

Will you accept applications from someone who requires a work permit? top
We are unable to accept applications from individuals who do not already have the permanent and unrestricted right to work in the UK.

I have applied before, can I reapply? top
Yes, you are welcome to apply for this year’s scheme.

Do I need any relevant work experience? top
No, whilst it may be advantageous, it is not a requirement.

What is the salary package? top
Salaries can progress in excess of around £35,000 on completion of the 4 year training contract. Starting salaries and benefits will be dependent on the Borough you are placed with. The benefits will be in line with the employing authority’s local terms and conditions that will include a generous holiday entitlement, flexible working arrangements and an excellent pension scheme.

Do you pay relocation expenses? top
We are not able to reimburse expenses for candidates who will need to relocate for this scheme.

Will you pay travel expenses to attend the assessment centre? top
We are unfortunately unable to reimburse travel expenses for candidates invited to attend a face-to-face assessment with us.

What does studying for the CIPFA Professional Qualification involve?
The CIPFA Professional Qualification involves three stages. The first stage, the certificate level, involves 4 modules. The second stage, the diploma level, involves 5 modules and 2 half modules. On completing each of these stages you will have attained a recognised qualification. The third stage, the Final Test of Competence (FTC) involves 2 modules one of which is a case study. Each full module will be assessed by a 3 hour exam, the half modules by a 2 hour exam and the case study will be a 7 hour exam.

Upon registering for CIPFA you will also undertake the Initial Professional Development Scheme (IPDS), which gives you the practical experience to complete your studies. On completing the FTC and the IPDS students will be eligible to apply for full CIPFA membership and be able to use the letters ‘CPFA’ after your name.

Will I be exempt from any part of the course if I have an accountancy or related degree? top
Yes, you may be exempt from sitting certain exams, but it is best practice to attend the lectures and complete the college studies. Please refer to CIPFA regarding exemption enquiries.

Is there a CIPFA website? top

How long does the CIPFA Professional Qualification take to complete? top
If you are starting without any exemptions the course should take approximately three years to complete.

How will I study? top
You will study for the CIPFA Professional Qualification at the CIPFA Education & Training Centre (CETC) in Borough High Street. These classes will supplement the learning materials and self-assessment tools that are available on the online Student Learning Centre. Both the classes at CETC and the Student Learning Centre will help you prepare for exam success.

Will the course be day release? top

What happens if I fail an exam?top
When a trainee fails an exam your employer will give their support to retake the examination if the trainee’s work based performance in the placement is deemed satisfactory.

Who pays for the training? top
Your employer throughout the training period will cover the cost of your training.

What is the recruitment process? top
We will open for applications on the 7th January 2019 and all completed applications will be sifted against the selection criteria and suitable candidates will progress to the next stage which will be an online numerical test. Successful candidates will then be invited to a telephone interview, to be held in March 2019.

The telephone interview will explore some of the information you provided in your application form and the behaviours and personal attributes which have been identified as essential for successful job performance.

Successful candidates will then be invited to attend one of our half day assessment centres in London which are provisionally scheduled to be held during April 2019.

The assessment centre will comprise a number of exercises designed to assess the skills required and will provide you with an opportunity to find out more about our scheme.

Final interviews with the participating London Boroughs will be held May 2019 after which offers of employment will be made to successful candidates.

Can I obtain feedback if I am unsuccessful in my application? top
We are unfortunately unable to offer feedback for candidates who are unsuccessful at any stage of the recruitment process.

What is the closing date for applications? top
The final closing date for receipt of applications is 17th February 2019 however we may close early depending on the volume of applications we receive therefore it is best to submit your application to us sooner rather than later.

How can I find out about other graduate career opportunities, more experienced hire vacancies in local government or more information about the CIPFA Professional Qualification? top

Please follow the links below:

Can I apply if I am currently involved in political activities? top
Our graduate roles are politically restricted under the Local Government and Housing Act 1989. We are therefore unable to accept applications from candidates currently involved with political activity, both during and outside of election periods.


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