A partner in a consulting, accountancy or financial firm is a co-owner entitled to share in the profits. While partnerships remain, many entities are now incorporated but the title ‘partner’ remains in wide use.

A senior employee may be called a partner which indicates a ‘salaried partner’ who is entitled to share profits in some way.

Partnership remains the career aspiration for many. Partners combine qualities of professionalism, technical expertise and business development skills which make them highly effective and highly trusted.

Entry and progression

Partners in accountancy firms will have considerable experience as financial professionals and maybe registered auditors or have worked in consultancy or the corporate sector.

High level competencies required by partners include:

  • business acumen and commercial awareness
  • evaluate and justify strategic options
  • adapts and responds to different leadership styles
  • manages and motivates people to maximise performance
  • applies ethical and professional values.

Exam options

Examinations relevant to partners is dependent on the specialism of the Partner and organisation in which they work.


High level competencies required by partners include:

  • Audit, Assurance and Advisory

    A. Advises on and communicates effectively the role and scope of audit, assurance and advisory engagements to relevant stakeholders.

    B. Applies regulatory, legal, professional and ethical standards relating to advisory, audit and assurance engagements

    C. Plans and prepares for audit, assurance and advisory engagements

    D. Performs effective audit and assurance engagements

    E. Reviews and reports on the findings of audit and assurance engagements.

    F. Guiding efficient and effective operations.


  • Strategy, Technology and Innovation

    A. Applies business acumen and commercial awareness to deliver business objectives.

    B. Recommends a range of suitable strategic options from which to develop plans and objectives.

    C. Evaluates, justifies and implements suitable strategic options.

    D. Adopts and applies innovative methods and technologies to implement strategy and manages change.


  • Tax Advisory

    A. Communicates knowledge of the operation and scope of the tax system, obligations of tax payer, and the implications of non-compliance and advises on tax planning.

    B. Advises ethically on strategic tax plans and computes the tax liabilities of individuals.

    C. Advises ethically on strategic tax plans and computes the corporation tax liabilities of individual companies and groups of companies.

    D. Explains and computes the effects of value added tax (VAT) / goods and services tax (GST) and indirect tax on incorporated and unincorporated businesses and advising appropriately.

  • Ethics and Professionalism

    A. Develops advanced ethical values and professional skills in the promotion of public interest and the profession.

    B. Demonstrates personal effectiveness in fast changing environments.

    C. Encourages innovative thinking within the context of professional scepticism.

    D. Thinks proactively about the future, applying professional judgement and commercial intelligence and seeks specialist input when needed.

    E. Communicates effectively and influences others.