The role of the workplace mentor is crucial to you completing your experience and gaining the ACCA Qualification.
Who is a workplace mentor?
A workplace mentor is an individual who supports your development in the workplace and reviews your progress and achievement at work. Your workplace mentor should guide and support you by:
- helping you identify which performance objectives you should aim to achieve
- setting targets in terms of performance and timescales
- providing access to appropriate work experience and supporting your development. This may mean helping arrange job rotations, project work or other opportunities to gain relevant experience
- evaluating and reviewing your progress on a regular and on-going basis
- signing off performance objectives that you have achieved.
If your workplace mentor has agreed to review your practical experience online, then they will be able to use the My Experience record to review your answers to the challenge questions.
If there is someone you would like to act as your workplace mentor, then you can use our Become a workplace mentor flyer. It briefly describes the nature of the role and the benefits to them. You can print it or send it as an email attachment.
There is also a range of support available for existing and prospective workplace mentors: you or your workplace mentor can click on the link to the right of the page for PER Support to gain further information.
Who can be your workplace mentor?
Your workplace mentor should be someone you work closely with, who knows the type of work you currently do and who also knows the quality of your work. This will probably be your line manager or whoever you report to on particular projects or activities.
Ideally your workplace mentor should be a qualified accountant. If they are not an ACCA member, they should be a member of a professional accountancy or audit body recognised by law in the country in which you work. If your workplace mentor isn’t qualified then you will need a Training Supervisor as well.
You may have more than one workplace mentor - or several different workplace mentors over a period of time - who is responsible for helping you to achieve different performance objectives. For example, you may report directly to your line manager who will be able to help you with Performance Objective 5, Communicate effectively, but you may also be working closely on a project with another colleague who may be able to support you on Performance Objective 9, Manage an assignment.
It is important that your workplace mentor has the knowledge and experience to support you - they will be assessing whether you have met performance objectives so it is crucial they have the expertise to do this. You should always avoid having friends or relatives as your workplace mentor to avoid any potential conflicts of interest.
If your workplace mentor is not a qualified accountant or auditor another option is to get your performance objectives countersigned by someone who can act as your ‘training supervisor’.
A training supervisor must be a qualified accountant or auditor recognised by law in your country of employment.
Training supervisors do not have access to the online My Experience record to review and sign off your achievements. Instead, you will need to provide them with a paper copy of your challenge questions and answers as well as the sign-off form. You can print these from the online My Experience record. You must keep the signed-off forms in case you are selected for a PER audit.
You or your workplace mentor must enter the details of your training supervisor into the online My Experience record and also update your records when they have signed off a performance objective.