The difference between an ATO and a Training Principal, and a look at the variety of organisations currently training ICAS Chartered Accountants
What’s the difference between an ATO and a Training Principal?
An Authorised Training Office (ATO) is a business or organisation that trains Chartered Accountants.
The Training Principal is the person within the organisation who is responsible for the ICAS CA students.
For example, ‘High-Street Bank’ might be the ATO, and ‘John Smith CA’, High-Street Bank’s Chief Financial Officer, might be the Training Principal.
Our own students can go on to become Training Principals for organisations after they’ve qualified, and there are no limits to the number of ATOs we can work with, so we’re always seeking to build relationships across different industries.
Who are the current ICAS ATOs?
Our current range of ATOs includes BDO, Lloyds Banking Group, Morgan Stanley, the ‘Big 4’ and most accounting practices in Scotland.
However, many of the UK’s lesser-known local companies have registered to become ATOs and are actively training the next generation of Chartered Accountants, and we’re continually branching out to increase and support the variety of businesses we work with.
Why did they become ATOs?
The common thread between all these organisations is a recognition of the benefits of becoming an ATO and training CAs: it helps them attract the best talent and equips them with top-class accountancy and business professionals. Additionally, employers can take advantage of the strong degree of loyalty demonstrated by CA graduates, who often stay with their training office for years after qualification.
Why is having a range of ATOs important for everyone?
The relatively low average age of the ICAS membership is testament to the sheer number of students currently studying to earn their CA designation, and to all those potential new recruits keen to follow in their footsteps.
And all these talented youngsters need somewhere to gain and employ their expertise – the more training firms we work with, the more options they’ll have.
In addition, having our students train within an ever-diversifying variety of sectors serves to widen the overall base of experience, strengthen the profession, and ultimately benefit the industries and sectors our qualified CAs go on to serve.
Boost your business by training an ICAS CA
If you’d like to consider becoming an ATO and training a CA, then please register your interest and we’ll be in touch to guide you through the process.
Find out more information about becoming an ICAS Authorised Training Office and the benefits of training Chartered Accountants with ICAS in our Become an ATO brochure.