Rise in Number of Female Accountants

Feb 20, 2014


 According to an article on, there has been a steady increase in the number of women accountants in recent years. Figures from the Office of National Statistics (ONS) show that women now make up 44% of full time accountants. That’s 32,000 female full time chartered accountants in the UK: a huge increase on 2012.

Female employment in general is at its highest since records began, at over 67% –  ONS

A report by recruitment firm Randstad showed that last year over half of candidates registering with them were women; during the same period the previous year 47% of registered candidates were female. According to Randstad, for the first time in the firm’s history, more women are applying for professional service jobs than men; revealed by analysis of 1,250 jobs including finance and risk, banking operations, compliance and investment management positions.

According to a statement by ACCA on International Women’s Day 2013, the number of qualified female accountants, including tax accountants rose from 30% to 34% in the UK between 2006 and 2011. Helen Brand, chief executive of ACCA, said “Accountancy is often perceived as a male dominated industry, but the number of women in the profession has been rising steadily in recent years…While these figures are certainly promising, as an industry we must work together to ensure female talent is nurtured and supported.”

Jayne Florence, head of recruitment at Sift Media, has commented that while almost half of those joining the accounting profession are women, only 25% of partners are female. Florence said: “It is now common for more than half of accounting professional new hires to be women. Some firms even report impressive ratios that exceed 70%. Yet today, women only account less than 25% of partners within accountancy firms. Before the recession there was great emphasis on encouraging the progression of women in the profession by motivating accounting firms to identify and motivate top female talent in their firms offering incentives and support.”

Randstad have said that the increase in female professional services workers, including accountants, is the result of an increase in supply of well-qualified female talent, as well as the effect of professional services firms’ diversity programmes. The Universities and Colleges Admission Service (UCAS) revealed that of the 580,000 latest applications for places at British institutions, 333,700 applicants were women, and only 246,300 were men.

At Knowles Warwick, we pride ourselves on having a diverse team of chartered and accredited accountants, trainees and bookkeepers; with 43% male staff and 57% female. Does your company encourage diversity when hiring new staff and trainees? Is there a programme in place to help support the career progression of talented female staff? Let us know in the Comments.

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