Image of a professionally dressed woman Asian woman wearing glasses, smiling and standing with her back to a large window in a bright sunny room

The changing world of accountants

Expectations on the profession are increasing. Growing regulations and governance, globalisation, and increased use of digital technologies together mean the world is a more complex place for the professional accountant. As a result careers can look very different from those of the past but skills remain vital to on-going development.

At the same time we are increasingly adopting more flexible career paths. We are moving from the traditional, so called ‘ladder’ path to a more dynamic path or lattice where we make career choices aligned to our personal growth agendas.

Individuals are also taking control of their own development - actively acquiring the new skills to progress rather than waiting for employer-led development opportunities.

An illustration of the four dynamics of change in workplace learning: technology and accounting, evolving workplace, self-curated learning, flexibility in career. Four dynamics of change in workplace learning

Why 'learning to learn' is the key to unlock potential

The choices of how we learn are increasing. There are more providers and more content is readily available, in more accessible and just in time formats. As learners we need to understand more about how we personally learn and what activities we can undertake to achieve the performance level that we are seeking. Making the right choices to remain successful in our careers.

"a pivotal event [for the organisation] was embracing the fact that learning was for all, no matter what your role was, your age or your length of time at Boots, understanding this brought about a brand new way of thinking about learning"

Charles Beddington, Boots, UK

Building a culture to support learning 

Embracing continuous learning requires both a certain mindset and, probably, a kind of paradigm shift for many. Organisations therefore need to ensure that they foster a culture of openness to developing by embracing the learning strategy as part of the overall business strategy. 

Download the full report

Lead ACCA author, Clive Webb