What roles can I apply for after completing an AAT Professional Diploma?

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There’s a wide range of career opportunities available to students who finish an AAT professional diploma in accounting (Level 4). We take a look at what’s out there 

“For students who have achieved the AAT Professional Diploma in Accounting (Level 4), if they complete one year’s relevant work experience, they can apply to become a full member of AAT and use ‘MAAT’ after their name,” says Sam Hannigan, programme manager at Premier Training. 

With an AAT Professional Diploma, you can apply for the following roles: 

Finance officer 

Finance officers manage many of the financial issues taking place within a company, including creating budgets, overseeing spending, preparing financial statements, assisting with audits, fiddly VAT stuff and working closely with the C-suite. “Many AAT Professional Diploma students want to become a finance officer – it’s a great job because it’s so general and wide-ranging,” says Adam Ruston-Shaw, head of delivery at training provider, Babington. 

Commercial analyst 

This job involves scrutinising areas of the business to identify where it can make savings and reduce spending. You’ll need to be confident making gut instinct decisions, comfortable with meeting stakeholders, plus have strong analysis skills. It’s also a great springboard into business partnering. 

Senior bookkeeper 

A pivotal part of any finance team, senior bookkeepers manage accounting records, such as recording transactions, processing payments and producing financial reports.  

VAT accountant 

VAT accountants advise businesses on anything to do with VAT, particularly its impact on any transactions. 

Cost accountant 

A cost accountant determines the costs of providing a service or making a product. It involves deep-diving into lots of data, plus analysing expenses in the supply chain such as labour, shipping and admin costs. 

Fixed asset accountant 

This role involves overseeing the fixed assets of a firm (e.g. property and equipment), and ensuring these are all accounted for accurately. 

Payroll manager 

Payroll managers run the payroll team within an organisation and are ergo responsible for making sure all staff are paid their correct wages on time. 

Indirect tax manager 

A role that’s become even more important post-Brexit, indirect tax managers advise how indirect taxes (VAT, excise duties and import tariffs) impacts upon a business and/or clients.  

Payments and billing manager 

Payments and billing managers supervise the raising of invoices in an organisation to ensure these are all calculated correctly. 

Senior fund accountant 

Working alongside investment managers, senior fund accountants produce accounts and investor reports for investment funds. This role usually comes with a high starting salary, as you might expect. 

Tax supervisor/tax manager 

Tax supervisors or managers oversee tax plans for the business that they work for. It’s a job that provides access to senior stakeholders, and as such, is one of the most coveted positions in accountancy. 

Freelance bookkeeper  

“There’s nothing to stop AAT Professional Diploma students from setting up their own bookkeeping service – I’ve had some students do this before,” says Adam, who also notes aspiring freelancers may benefit from taking a software course too.   

Further reading:

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