Qualifying as a chartered accountant gives you professional recognition at the highest level in business and finance. A good accountant is always in demand – businesses need people with the financial skills to help turn their aspirations into commercial reality.

That’s where you come in.

We're looking for people with enquiring, lively minds and a strong sense of commitment. You’ll work with our clients – a mix of individuals, entrepreneurial start-ups, established companies and not-for-profit organisations. We’ll help you develop the skills to be able to interpret financial data, get under the skin of a client, and then offer relevant, realistic advice.

You’ll join a team that is passionate about delivering a superior, personal client service. And you will soon find it’s infectious – you will be given responsibility early on and know that you are making a difference every day as you learn on the job.

Who are we?

Wilkins Kennedy is an established, award winning firm of accountants. One of the UK’s Top-20 firms and with offices across the South of England, we deliver a full range of accounting and business advisory services to a wide range of clients in the UK and abroad.

Perhaps more importantly, as a firm we are growing rapidly. So if you have the appetite to progress, we can offer you excellent opportunities to develop your career. No matter which office you work at, you will be part of a team that is big enough to let you develop and small enough to let you stand out. 

How you get there: two paths

School leavers

You may prefer to bypass university and go straight into work after school. If you’re eager to jump straight in, then our school leaver programme is for you. As well as swapping the burden of a student loan for a competitive salary, you will gain real work experience with real clients from an early stage. Right from the outset you start working towards your professional qualifications.

In place of a degree, you will start your career as a trainee studying for the AAT qualification. This provides an excellent grounding for your future business career. And if you are conscientious and enjoy learning, we'll give you every support and encouragement. Most of our successful AAT trainees go on to take further exams for the ACA qualification. If you pass all exams first time you will be fully qualified in four years. And after that, all sorts of possibilities open up.


As a graduate, you skip AAT training and immediately start studying for the ACA qualification. You will work with a variety of businesses and could be leading assignments in your second year. It will be a tough three years, balancing client work with exams and revision. But once qualified, you will be on route to a fulfilling and rewarding career.

One destination

We don’t believe that all our people should be cast from the same mould, but we do expect everyone to have ambition, determination and integrity. In return, we will support you all the way as you pursue your career with us.

Throughout your training contract you will enjoy a mix of classwork and home study, supported by specialist  accountancy tutors who will help you prepare for your exams. We will also help you develop the IT, communication and management skills needed to stand out as an effective business professional. And just as importantly, your learning will be consolidated through practical experience gained from working on assignments with different clients.

There is a lot to take on, and we'll expect you to take responsibility as soon as you're ready. But as part of a close-knit, supportive team we will help you stay on track.

On achieving your qualification, you may wish to specialise in areas such as taxation, corporate finance or insolvency. Alternatively, you may follow a more generalist business advisory route – the choice is yours. We will continue to provide ongoing training as part of our development programme.

Many of our partners started with us as trainees and now run their own client portfolios. Whichever direction you ultimately choose to go in, a traineeship with Wilkins Kennedy offers you a qualification and a wealth of experience that will provide an excellent grounding for your future.

What do I need?

  • A-B grades at GCSE or equivalent (inc Maths and English)  
  • Willingness to handle responsibility
  • Good A levels (or equivalent) – typically minimum score of 300 UCAS points
  • An aptitude for detailed work
  • Minimum 2:1 degree or expected result (for graduate path)
  • Ambition
  • Good written and verbal communication skills
  • Flexibility and a personable, friendly attitude

So, graduate or school leaver, if you enjoy a challenge, want to make a difference in your work and are set for a career in accountancy, apply through our online Trainee Application Form.

Please note that as a firm that conducts business globally, we welcome applications from suitable applicants. However there are regulations governing the application process for work permits (to enable candidates to work in the UK) and one of the requirements is a current sponsor licence which the firm unfortunately does not currently have.  We are in the process of reviewing our sponsor position.

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