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CTA after ACCA

Just qualified ACCA now want to purse CTA

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Hi All,

I am 34 and just qualified ACCA (I know its late :( )

Working for a small practice firm since 2012. I usually deal with everyday tasks which expected at small firm like bookkeeping, VAT, direct Tax, Accounts preparation dealing with HMRC, external auditors etc.

Now I am thinking to gain another qualification (CTA) which is somehow relevant to my previous experience, but it will be a big step for me. 

The reason I want to do CTA is I believe I will have better chances to get job in big 10 firms or even industry and I do like doing/knowing about Tax, also I don’t see that working in small practice I will progress.

I am planning to prepare for Technical module for Nov 19 exam as I will have exemptions from awareness module, once I pass one module then I will search for relevant jobs and employer who can also support my studies as it will show my dedication towards CTA.

 I am married and have kids, so not a lot of time unfortunately on hands, however I am planning to study at least an hour every day and few hours on weekend until Nov, will it be enough to pass, and I am thinking to go for BPP course?

Also wants to know if I should really do CTA after ACCA, will I have any better chance to move in big corporates and practices?

I have not decided yet which modules I should go for if I want to work for big 10 practice firms or even industry in future? I was thinking like indirect tax and corporation tax.

Really appreciate your help and sorry for being so naive 

Thank you in advance.

Replies (10)

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By Maslins
15th Apr 2019 11:56

I doubt doing one CTA module would have a big impact on your ability to secure a role with a top 10 firm.

Would you be doing that first CTA module off your own back? Be aware if you asked your current firm to pay for it/give you study days off, then left after just one module they may well try to claw back some/all of the costs from you.

I did ACA with Tenon (at the time number 10), then went to Baker Tilly (I think number 7-8) to do CTA. I hadn't done any CTA exams before applying, they weren't bothered.

My opinion - if you want to move into tax in a bigger firm, do it now. Whether it's the right move for you/what you want to achieve or not is another question.

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By Jibri
15th Apr 2019 12:04

Thank you!

I know one paper will have not much impact but it may show my dedication towards CTA?

Yes I am not involving my current employer and will bear cost my self, unfortunately for some reasons I cannot move from my current job for year.

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By rhino83
15th Apr 2019 12:29

You're not in a dissimilar position to I once was. Having done other things in my early/mid twenties I got a trainee position in a small practise at 28.

I went on to study ACA and qualified at 32. I wanted to do CTA, but my employer didn't see the need. So I agreed to study it in my own time but they would pay for it through a wages deduction.

This was all whilst having two young children. I did it as a classroom study which suited me better and I think trying to study at home with kids would've been impossible, but may suit some people.

I now work for a top 10 firm in corp tax, which I never thought would be possible. I also know now that being unqualified wouldn't have hindered my application as they were more interested in relevant experience. There are several in my team who have no qualifications but are being supported through ATT/CTA/STEP though their own choice.

I would recommend speaking to a national recruitment agency which is what I had success with. I found the larger recruitment agents had a much wider knowledge of the market and could advise what roles I would be suitable for and allowed me to choose which direction I went and weren't pushy. Whereas I found the smaller local recruiters where blinkered in their approach and were telling me what I wanted rather than listening.

Good luck with whatever you choose.

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Replying to rhino83:
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By Jibri
15th Apr 2019 14:23

Thank you! your response really helped., just one point from your fourth paragraph so I don't really need to do CTA
work for big firms and I can use ACCA only?

Can you guide me if which modulse I should take?

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Replying to Jibri:
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By rhino83
15th Apr 2019 16:48

You don't need to do any qualifications it's the experience that is important. In my department there are people with no qualification and there are people with several all of which were "experienced hires" and not graduates.

Similar to lionofludesch I did my CTA qualification and I'm happy I did it but don't think it has made me anymore employable or helped me earn any more.

If you insist on doing CTA prior to looking for a role then choose the advisory modules you enjoy the most.

I did IHT/Tusts and OMB but now work in corp tax, but big companies will give you more than you need in terms of training anyway. If you do CTA through an employer they are more likely to dictate which route you take.

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By Maslins
15th Apr 2019 16:59

Quote:

Similar to lionofludesch I did my CTA qualification and I'm happy I did it but don't think it has made me anymore employable or helped me earn any more.


This. The stuff I learned was valuable. Being honest, the qualification itself isn't. It will hold some modest weight within the accounting sector, but outside it, nobody has a clue! Most clients of ours don't know (or care) the difference between AAT/ATT/ACA/CTA. Occasionally you'll get asked "are you qualified", but that's it!
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RLI
By lionofludesch
15th Apr 2019 12:24

It's a long time since I did the ATII (as it was) course but I did it immediately I qualified.

I did one night a week face to face for about 10 weeks then a week full time before the exam and passed first time. I wouldn't have done that if I'd been studying purely on my own at home.

Am I glad I did it ? Yes - it's been useful in awareness of tricky situations over the years. Obviously less so 38 years on. Has it earned me fees or increased my salary over the years ? Doubt it, to be honest.

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By SouthCoastAcc
15th Apr 2019 14:39

Im going to say it wont make a huge difference.

As an experienced hire, you will most importantly need the experience they require.

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Replying to SouthCoastAcc:
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By Jibri
15th Apr 2019 16:11

Ok thank you,

so as per your experience, you suggest me to get my self in to relevant role and then do CTA if required? is ACCA enough as good qualification?

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By Jibri
16th Apr 2019 10:15

Thank you all, only reason I wanted to CTA is that I thought it will make me more employable but if ACCA is enough for me to be employed by big companies, I am happy for that then :)

At some point if I feel I should do CTA then I will may be.

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