Accountants improve with age.

Less than a third of financial bosses believe that business nouse among new accountants has improved – despite efforts by the profession to make qualifications more business-relevant.

The Accountancy Age/Reed Marketing survey found that only eight per cent of more than 450 UK FDs questioned were definite that their junior staff had more business acumen than previous generations, while a further 21% said they might do.

The results come as both CIMA and ACCA renewed a drive to bring their training and qualifications up to date and relevance with today’s business marketplace.

A lack of practical knowledge and fast track graduates who were ‘all theory and no practice’ were highlighted as recruitment problems by FDs who both agreed and disagreed with the question.

One anonymous FD said: ‘The accountancy firms produce firms’ robots who improve with age.’

Just over a fifth said their rooky accountants did not have the business where-with-all they had seen in the past, while almost 50% said they were neutral.

Another FD who didn’t give his name said: ‘We have interviewed lots of newly qualifieds and they don’t seem to have a grasp of the responsibilities entailed in the professional work place.’

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