Institute bids to win back E&Y training contract

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The ICAEW is on a charm
offensive to woo back
& Young
’s contract for training the firm’s recruits.

Minutes from the body’s most recent council meeting disclose the attempts.
About 400 E&Y trainees a year take
courses rather than the ICAEW’s.

The Big Four firm switched from ICAEW to ICAS in 2000 because it offered a
more intensive study regime where graduates sat most of their exams straight
after completing their studies.

But the minutes of the latest meeting say that the institute is hoping to
strike back. ‘Discussions [are] continuing with Ernst & Young, with a view
to persuading them to return to training with the ICAEW. The chief executive
particularly thanked the president for his effort in this regard.’

When contacted by Accountancy Age this week, president of the ICAEW
Richard Dyson said: ‘We have had a meeting with Mark Otty and discussions are
ongoing.’ Dyson is an E&Y partner.

The topic also came up at the council meeting during a presentation by Nick
Land, the head of the practice advisory board, on training.

A former chairman of E&Y, Land is not involved in the latest moves.

E&Y’s graduate trainees account for about 400 out of ICAS’s average
annual student intake of 1050. Over the last 10 years its average intake of
students has increased threefold.

E&Y said: ‘We have no current plans to transfer back to the ICAEW but as
with all our supplier relationships we keep our options under constant review
against a set of agreed criteria.

‘In 2000 when we moved the professional education of our students to ICAS we
assessed that their model offered more rigour and better met our needs and ICAS
continue to provide an excellent service.’

ICAS would not comment on the ICAEW’s approach.

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