Planning your PER activity

What are the key questions you need to be asking yourself to help you advance towards achieving ACCA membership?


As we come to terms with dealing with the upheaval that Covid-19 has brought to our lives, now might be a good time to think – or rethink – about how to plan your PER progress.

One of ACCA’s Essential performance objectives – PO 5, Leadership and Management – focuses on how you manage yourself and your time. But your personal effectiveness – such as your ability to plan your workload and manage your time – will be put to the test even before you embark on your practical experience requirement (PER) activities.

If you understand and recognise the desired outcomes for each activity, as well as how you will go about achieving them, you will be in a better place to complete your PER without fuss and within a reasonable timeframe. And you will be well on the way to earning the respect, recognition and career opportunities that ACCA members enjoy globally.

Proper planning

The My Experience tool has been designed to help you focus your efforts and ensure you make the most of the time you spend working towards the PER. Here are some tips to get you started.

Take the time to read through the performance objectives, with particular attention to those you are considering selecting for your four Technical performance objectives. Then sketch out various factors that might influence your success in achieving each objective.

Ask yourself:

  • Which Essential performance objectives will I be most likely to acquire with minimum hassle?
  • Which will be the most tricky, and why? How might I overcome these?
  • Which Technical performance objectives tie in most cleanly with my job, and might therefore be easier to achieve?
  • Apart from my practical experience supervisor, who else might help me? If my practical experience supervisor has offered to put a word in for me to get the experience I need, what can I do to help him or her ‘sell’ the idea of, say, a secondment to another team leader?
  • What resources are available from ACCA that would help me? How can I access these resources? What resources are available for my practical experience supervisor?
  • When am I going to concentrate on each performance objective? How many can I feasibly handle at any one time?
  • How will I know when I've developed sufficient expertise or competence in certain areas to be able to achieve a performance objective and obtain sign off from my practical experience supervisor?
  • If I haven’t yet completed the Ethics and Professional Skills module, when should I do this? What can I learn from the module that might smooth the path to achieving some of my other performance objectives?
  • Preparation is key. If, after this initial period of introspection, you find yourself facing a scarily extensive action list, break down each task into its components. Plot your key milestones, building in ‘safety nets’ that allow you to get back on track if you fall behind.

Be gentle with yourself

There is a saying: ‘Don’t let the perfect be the enemy of the good’. In other words, this means ‘cut yourself some slack’.

If you discover that you have been overly ambitious about certain objectives, it’s important to regularly review your progress towards completing your PER, revising certain dates or goals so that you don't feel that you are perpetually scrambling to catch up.