Superior brand recognition from employers is one of the key objectives we aim to deliver. This year, we’ve seen preference for ACCA from key employers around the world increase significantly.

Liz Blackburn FCCA, Reputational risk manager, RBS and ACCA Council member

For the first time since we began measuring sentiment, 50% of these employers said that they would prefer to recruit an ACCA – up seven percentage points since last year. At the same time, we’re also seeing less indifference to which qualification new experienced hires hold, with 6% fewer employers being indifferent. This increased positivity is also reflected in training decisions, with 64% of employers saying they would want a student or graduate joining them to study ACCA, up nine percentage points, year-on-year. While employers who don’t express a preference for a particular qualification path for trainees was 31%, this has also fallen ten percentage points since last year.

We’ve continued to promote our qualification changes, the drivers behind them, and the capabilities they deliver strongly to employers. In October 2018, we launched a global advertising campaign, highlighting ten main drivers of change to help employers assess how ready they are to cope with an ever-changing world. Called the ‘readiness initiative’, the creative and interactive messaging focused on ten issues identified from ACCA’s professional insights research – from ethics to the future of talent – with the aim of helping employers think ahead about the opportunities and challenges they face, and offering practical solutions and guidance. We developed an online diagnostic to help employers assess their readiness for key current challenges and should point them to a range of ACCA resources to help them prepare, including our extensive range of professional insights.

76% of employers we surveyed told us they were aware of the changes to the ACCA Qualification (up 6% on last year), meaning there is still effort we need to put in to get the message out. We’ll be continuing to focus on this in 2019-20, making sure that we tell the story of the difference we bring to the marketplace even more powerfully. We’ll anchor this around four quarterly brand themes, which all our brand and marketing activity will align behind, ensuring we make global impact.

Overall, 96% of employers say ACCA is a respected brand and 93% say ACCA is a world-class organisation, with 90% of employers telling us that ACCA provides relevant skills for their business (down a marginal 1%) and 91.5% overall satisfaction with ACCA and what we offer.

These positive perceptions have also influenced employers’ views of ACCA’s relative standing in the market place. 51% say ACCA is the now leader in their market (up eight percentage points) and 60% say ACCA is the global leader in the profession (up seven percentage points).

Strengthening employer preference for ACCA and continued strong satisfaction

Overall satifaction with ACCA

+ 0.5ppt

Net promoter score (NTS)

- 0.4ppt

Prefer ACCA when recruiting experiences hires

+ 7ppt

ACCA provides relevant skills for my business

+ 0.5ppt

ACCA is the leading body in my market

+ 8ppt

ACCA is the leading global body

+ 7ppt

ACCA increasingly seen as the market leader by employers

say ACCA is the leading body in their market

say ACCA is the leading global body

How we work with employers

— Our relationship with Royal Bank of Scotland Group plc

The Royal Bank of Scotland (RBS) is one of a distinguished group of employers that hold both ACCA Platinum Approved training status and Professional Development status globally.

The relevance of ACCA’s Professional Insights has helped to deepen the relationship between RBS and ACCA over the past year.

One of our members at RBS had seen an ACCA PI report on technology opportunities for the finance function, talked about its findings, and circulated the insights from this research in the business for use in informing its work on finance transformation. ACCA’s subject matter expert was then connected with the business and provided his direct insight on technology transformation as part of their research. Subject to confidentiality constraints, RBS has shared its business perspective to ACCA in return.

Liz Blackburn FCCA, Reputational Risk Manager at RBS and an ACCA Council member has been instrumental in facilitating the right connections between her employer and her professional body, enabling ACCA to add value in new ways.

‘That my employer derived genuine benefit from ACCA’s Professional Insights has been fantastic. It was great to leverage that value by introducing the relevant RBS colleagues to ACCA employees who researched and wrote the report.

The Professional Insights research that ACCA produces tackle the real issues organisations are facing in a highly relevant and timely way.

Above all, it underlines that the Professional Insights research that ACCA produces tackle the real issues organisations are facing in a highly relevant and timely way.’

‘Because of ACCA’s vast global network, it is uniquely positioned to draw on the connections that provide thoughts and answers that resonate within businesses. That puts a network of highly skilled professionals at ACCA fingertips, feeding into its Professional Insights work and giving it the depth and diversity that makes it relevant to the challenges organisations are facing now.’