Supercharge your career specialising as a MAAT

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Becoming a full AAT member (MAAT) sets you apart from others in the finance and accounting world.

It shows that you have a high level of qualifications and that you’re committed to your own professional development. 

But once you are a full member, the opportunity to further impress employers needn’t stop there. If the Chartered route isn’t for you, you can still supercharge your career by specialising in a particular area. 

Why specialise? 

Concentrating on a specific area of expertise is a great way to get out of a career rut. 

You’ll learn additional skills 

Continuous development is so important if you want to progress in your role. Gaining a deeper level of understanding in particular areas will help you overall. 

You’ll become the expert in your field 

You’ll have a higher than average level of knowledge in your subject and gain respect from your peers. 

It’s affordable 

Specialising is a more cost-effective route and less intense than following the Chartered path. 

You’ll demonstrate the key traits of a specialist 

Becoming a specialist shows that you have focus, commitment and that you’re prepared to work hard. All fundamental attributes that employers are looking for in recruitment and for promotion.  

It will open up your options

Having special expertise doesn’t narrow down options, it creates more opportunities. And you’ll still have the full flexibility to continue to specialise in other areas if you want to.

What could I specialise in? 

Areas that you could specialise in include: 

  • Tax
  • Pensions
  • Payroll
  • Data analysis

All of these specialisms are professionally underpinned by the AAT. 


Tax is a complex subject and is ever-changing. Undoubtedly people that dedicate time to learning about tax and tax relief can provide enormous value to employers and clients. 

Where to start? 


In an ageing population, choosing and reviewing the best retirement and pension plans are crucial for both employees and employers. Even within pensions, you could specialise in pension consultancy, particular types of pensions or pension transfers. 

Where to start? 


Experts in payroll have to be good at creating processes and understanding procedures. They will need to use, review, advise on and implement payroll systems and software. 

Where to start? 

Data analysis

With the amount of data now available to businesses, the people who can analyse it to spot future trends and more effective and efficient ways to grow will be in great demand. Even if you work for a small company who doesn’t have much of their own data, you can research external sources that will affect the business to draw conclusions, help with decision-making and make suggestions about how they should be capturing and using data for themselves. 

Where to start? 

Key takeaways 

  • Being a MAAT full member will differentiate you in a crowded market place. 
  • By learning additional skills you can build on your career foundations and become a respected expert in your field. 
  • By specialising in areas like tax, payroll, pensions or data analysis you can demonstrate how you’ll bring tangible value to an employer or clients. 


The best way to progress your career is with continued professional development. Not only are the extra skills you learn valuable but your commitment to learning in itself will show an employer that you have special traits. By focusing on a specific area of know-how you can really set yourself apart from the masses.

Further reading:

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