National Audit Office

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About the NAO
As the public body helping Parliament scrutinise government on how taxpayers’ money is spent, we offer the chance to have a real impact on society; our vision is to “help the nation spend wisely”. A relatively young organisation (two-thirds of our people are under 40), we benefit from a yearly influx of graduates and school leavers brimming with ideas and enthusiasm. We place great emphasis on training and development, cultivating an environment in which employees develop skills and gain the right experience, as well as providing them with responsibility early in their careers. We are seeking ambitious graduates and school leavers keen to make a contribution in this environment and gain a head-start in building their careers.

What Accountancy trainee schemes do we offer?

School Leaver Scheme
Our fully funded five-year school leaver scheme leads to qualification as a chartered accountant. It’s a fantastic opportunity to get a professional qualification without incurring the debt of going to university. At the same time, you’ll be earning a competitive salary and getting involved in interesting and challenging work.

You’ll spend the first two years studying for the Certificate in Finance, Accounting and Business (CFAB). After successfully completing CFAB, you’ll spend a further three years studying to become a fully qualified chartered accountant (ACA) through the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).  Click here to find out more about why you should join us.

Graduate Scheme
Our three-year ACA training programme is open to graduates from any degree discipline, so there is no need to have studied accountancy or maths to excel at the NAO. We value diversity in all its forms and this mix of academic backgrounds helps us to generate the wealth of ideas which helps the NAO thrive. The scheme sees you right through to qualification as an associate chartered accountant with the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW).

You will get responsibility from an early stage in your career with us, helping to deliver our financial audit work and having opportunities to work on our high profile value for money studies and a range of other assurance work. Our unique and varied clients mean you could be working with anyone from the Ministry of Defence (MoD) to the The Royal Household.

Click here to find out more about why you should join us. For insights and tips from our current graduate trainees, please visit the NAO graduate blog.

Internship Scheme
Our eight-week summer internship programme offers places to 12-16 undergraduates from an ethnic minority or lower socioeconomic background who are about to enter their final year at university. Interns gain valuable insights and experience into the unique work of the NAO and the opportunity to strengthen their professional network. At the end of the programme all interns can undertake the graduate assessment centre and if successful will be offered a place on our graduate scheme.

What are the key benefits of the trainee schemes?
In addition to ongoing training and development, we offer a host of other benefits including:
• A benchmarked, highly competitive starting salary
• Interest free season ticket loan
• Membership of the excellent civil service pension
• On-site gym (London office) cash subsidy for local gym (Newcastle office)
• Payment of professional subscriptions.
• Designated college and study time
• Comprehensive support network, including an NAO ‘buddy’ from our more experienced trainees
• A 2-year development programme, after qualifying, to support your progression and further build your career

How can a trainee stand out?
We would like to think that everyone stands out in their own, unique way. You are able to make your mark in a number of ways though, from being passionate about the public sector to demonstrating how our scheme will further your development and aid your aspirations. We are always impressed by people who are enthusiastic about our work and how they feel they can contribute to it, so we would encourage you do some research and think about how you see yourself working with us.

Hear from the team at NAO