Internal and external auditors check organisations’ financial records and procedures to make sure they are accurate and efficient.
Salary Range: £25,000 to £80,00
You can get into this job through:
- a university course
- an apprenticeship
- applying directly
- training with a professional body
You could do an accountancy degree at university, then complete further training to become an auditor.
You’ll usually need:
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C), or equivalent, including English and maths
- 3 A levels or equivalent
You may be able to complete an apprenticeship to qualify as an internal auditor, while working with a company. Training includes:
- a higher apprenticeship as an internal audit practitioner
- a level 7 apprenticeship as an internal audit professional
You’ll usually need:
- 4 or 5 GCSEs at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) and A levels, or equivalent, for a higher or degree apprenticeship
You can join a company as a trainee auditor, or move into auditing by being seconded to an internal auditing team from another department.
You’ll usually need at least A level qualifications or equivalent, and you’ll be expected to take further training as your career develops.
You can qualify by doing:
- a graduate training scheme after completing an accountancy degree at university
- the National Audit Office 3-year training scheme for graduates in any subject
- the National Audit Office 5-year training scheme for school leavers with 3 A levels or equivalent qualifications
Professional and industry bodies
To be an external auditor, you’ll need to be a qualified chartered accountant and a member of one of the following professional bodies:
- Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
- Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)
- The Association of International Accountants (AIA)
You’ll need to be a member of the The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy to carry out audits in the public sector.
If you’re qualified as an accountant with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), you can carry out internal audits.
Skills and knowledge
- knowledge of economics and accounting
- maths knowledge
- to be thorough and pay attention to detail
- analytical thinking skills
- knowledge of English language
- the ability to accept criticism and work well under pressure
- business management skills
- customer service skills
- to be able to use a computer and the main software packages confidently
Your day-to-day duties might involve:
- examining company accounts
- identifying any problems or risks to the business
- assessing the company’s financial reporting systems
- making recommendations for improvements
You could work in an office or at a client’s business.
As an experienced external auditor, you could move into management and then become a partner or finance director. You could also set up your own accountancy practice.
As an experienced internal auditor, you could move into a management role. You could also become a chartered internal auditor, or become a self-employed consultant.
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