How to write a winning entry for One Young CA 2017

Winning entry
By Eleanor O'Neill, CA Today

21 April 2017

The clock continues to count down towards the deadline for nominating this year's 35 CAs under 35, held in association with Investec Click & Invest. Will you be putting yourself forward? 

If you are an ICAS member under the age of 35, or if you know an extraordinary young CA, you are eligible to nominate yourself or another. Non-CAs are welcome to submit nominations. 

Jenny Hatfield CA, 2016 nominee and Founder of Hummingbird Accountancy Services, said: "There are other awards out there for those at the top of their careers who have already made it, but these awards recognise those who are still developing themselves and helps to identify them as rising stars of the future.

"It’s a huge confidence boost to be shortlisted and something that shows that you are being recognised by your peers early in your career."

Here are our five top tips for writing a winning entry to help get you started.

1. Know the value of brevity

You have a maximum allowance of 500 words to convey why your nominee deserves a place on the 35 CAs under 35 list.

Prioritise the successes that the skills and experience of the CA qualification were instrumental in. How has being a CA helped you develop as a professional and achieve your career goals?

Bullet points are an acceptable format.

Use the process as a great opportunity to step back and consider how much you have already achieved as well as any potential skills gaps that you can start to work on.

- Steve Smith CA,

2016 35 CAs under 35

2. Tailor your entry to your category

Focus on highlighting the achievements that best align with the competition categories:

  • Entrepreneurship: For CAs who can demonstrate a knack for entrepreneurial initiative and have used their skills to help shape original ideas into a successful reality.
  • Innovation & Technology: For CAs who are known for implementing dramatic change and thrive in an environment of new innovative processes and technologies.
  • Leadership & Influence: For CAs who motivate and inspire those around them while driving their organisations toward diversity, inclusivity and success.
  • Sustainability & CSR: For CAs that are dedicated to making a positive impact in both business and wider society with deference to sustainability and corporate responsibility.

If you believe your entry fits into more than one category, you can choose to have ICAS decide.

Don’t be afraid to self-nominate. If you don’t know which category to select, don’t worry!  ICAS can determine which category you best suit off the back of your nomination.

- Katherine Ritchie CA,

2016 35 CAs under 35

3. Don't be afraid to boast

The 35 CAs under 35 list is a celebration of the successes young ICAS members have earned. We want you to tell us why you are the best of the best.

Be honest about your impact as an individual and acknowledge the important role you play. Don't let modesty get in the way of a fantastic opportunity!

There is no generic profile for the One Young CA winner... Focus on identifying what distinguishes you from the rest and have fun during the process!

- Pete Ferguson CA,

2016 35 CAs under 35

4. Remember you are a part of ICAS

The global community of CAs is a highly respected network of professional thought-leaders, innovators and drivers of success.

What does ICAS mean to you? Why are you proud to be a CA? What would this recognition among your peers mean to you?

Being featured on the 35 CAs under 35s list has really helped me raise my profile and reconnect with ICAS.

- Jamie Davidson CA,

2016 35 CAs under 35

5. Think outside of work

We are looking for CAs that go the extra mile and seek out opportunities for themselves, taking their influence beyond the workplace.

Do you volunteer? How do you use your CA qualification for the greater good?

Reflect on your achievements and what makes you tick. You will be surprised at how others see you, which provides an excellent development opportunity either in your career or personally!

- Stuart MacDougall CA,

2016 35 CAs under 35

2016 One Young CA Rimla Akhtar MBE: Why I nominated myself


How to enter

  1. Visit the ICAS One Young CA website.
  2. Fill out the details of yourself or your nominee.
  3. Select a category or choose 'ICAS to decide' from the options.
  4. Tell us in up to 500 words why you or your nominee should be one of the 35 CAs under 35.
  5. Hit 'Submit Nomination'.

Investec Click & Invest, official Principal Partner of One Young CA 2017, is a new online actively managed investment management service for UK residents with £10,000 or more to invest. Launching soon.


  • CA life
  • One Young CA

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