A positive from the pandemic was the opportunity to develop free resources to support accountants that are available to everyone. In response to COVID-19, First Intuition developed and delivered a number of free resources for its clients, students, and young adults looking for work. These were introduced as First Intuition rapidly responded to the twin issues of employers coping with constant change in working practices, and young adults leaving education after a very fractured end to their school and college journeys.
The free resources were created to ensure existing students could continue with their studies, school/ college leavers could find their first jobs, and to help employers stay up to date with the latest news and information.
These free resources were subsequently made available to anyone so others could benefit from First Intuition’s training and insight. The majority of these continue to contribute to First Intuition’s ever-growing portfolio of free resources. They include:
AAT Revision Sessions
The AAT Revision Sessions are possibly the biggest free contribution to the accountancy community. To help students with AAT assessments the team of experienced tutors put together a range of free online revision programmes. These were open for anyone, not just First Intuition students.
These short sessions run on a weekly basis and break down a particular question type or topic area for many of the Level 2, 3 and 4 papers. At its height it offered 14 different free sessions per week to anyone studying AAT around the country.
Annually First Intuition centres across the country invite local students to come along to one of the free Accountancy Academies. These are a place for young adults to find out more about the accountancy and finance industry and the careers available within it. It gives students interested in pursuing a career in accountancy and finance the space to learn more and ask questions. First Intuition share and promote the academies amongst schools/ colleges and careers advisors to encourage as many students to join.
The event took place virtually in 2020 and 2021 allowing more students than ever from across the country to access the event. In 2021, the programme ran twice; once in April/May and then again in July with over 600 registrants. This allowed students who were completing assessments for GCSE and A-Levels to choose the best time to attend. Find an overview of the sessions here.
Mini Skills Sessions
In 2020 and 2021 we offered free virtual Mini Skills sessions that cover the essential skills to help anyone in the workplace think in a more focused and effective way to increase productivity. Topics ranged from time management to emotional intelligence. The interactive Mini Skills sessions focused on one topic per week so viewers could develop specific skills where needed.
Sessions were available to attend live and were relevant to both students and employers.
First Intuition Employer Forums became incredibly popular during the summer of 2020. This came as we saw many employers and educationalists tuning in regularly to hear the latest news from our industry.
Our regular First Intuition Think Tank (FITT) forums continue to address issues emerging that are affecting businesses. Previous topics have included remote onboarding, remote management of junior staff, the role of data analytics in accountancy, equality, diversity, and inclusion in the workplace, and engaging with schools and colleges to broaden your recruitment pipeline. Though aimed at employers, the topics are available to everyone, First Intuition client or not.
Collectively, the FITT forums have had thousands of attendees. The sessions are all recorded and summarised so anyone can revisit them. Click to find summaries of the sessions from 2020, 2021 and the recordings on YouTube.
Leadership Lunch and Learn Forums
First Intuition’s free bite-size leadership and management sessions, with guest speakers and panellists, were introduced to help businesses to lead and manage teams in unprecedented times. The sessions offer a great opportunity to learn from expert speakers on the topics facing companies today, and how to develop leadership skills to overcome new workplace challenges. Attendees can also hear first-hand how companies have implemented effective changes related to leadership and management. These sessions are recorded/ summarised and made available on First Intuition’s website and YouTube channel. Catch-up on previous Leadership Lunch and Learn forums here.
FI Directors David Malthouse and Ben Bullman present the FI Podcast aimed at students. Each week it covers the latest insights into exams, apprenticeships, study techniques, how to excel in the workplace, as well as general insight into the accountancy industry. Special guests also feature to talk about specialist topics of interest to our students. Previous guests include Steve Williams, Director of Security Operations for LNDSR, Catherine Wallis, Head of Operations at the One Group, and Christina Christoforou, ACCA qualified and founder of CMNC Finance.
In December 2021, there had been over 70 episodes and approaching 17,000 downloads. Covering topics from effective revisions techniques to managing mental health. Listen to previous episodes here.
During the pandemic, First Intuition tutors wanted to inspire accountancy students and give some much-needed motivation, structure, and technical help to keep them on track. As a result, First Intuition’s created the award-winning AATitude festival. The week of virtual events aimed at AAT students offered a unique space to draw together a multitude of perspectives, experiences, and expertise to gain knowledge and skills in all things AAT.
Topics included dealing with narrative tasks, revision techniques, how to succeed in synoptic assessments, career guidance, and more. The programme received 1,500 delegates from across the UK and ran again in 2021. AATitude Festival was also shortlisted for PQ Magazine’s ‘Innovation in Accountancy’ award. More details on the sessions and their recordings can be found here.
Employability Skills Resources
To account for the reduced focus on employability skills by schools during the pandemic, First Intuition put together a host of free employability skills resources. These are to help young adults navigate their way into the workplace and through the process of starting a new job.
The Employability Skills combine original content from First Intuition and links to other helpful resources. The content is relevant to anyone looking for help and advice on how to find, apply, and start a job in most roles. Not just in accountancy and finance. Resources include how to find the right career for you, how to apply and interview for a role, what to do once you have been offered a job, and how to make a good impression once you start.
Other useful topics include what to look out for in your contract of employment, office etiquette, and salary negotiations. We share the employability skills resources at careers fairs and distribute them to local schools/ colleges. Find the employability skills resources here.
Get your First Job in Accountancy Resources
Similarly, to make up for the fewer opportunities for young people to spend with careers advisors whilst working from home, First Intuition created a number of articles with information and advice on how to start a career in accountancy and finance. Links to these resources are below:
First Intuition created and compiled pre-start resources to help employers and their new trainees settle into their new roles. These resources are free to access ahead of starting or during the early weeks of a trainees accounting and finance role. They combine over 7 hours of video on different topics from First Intuition’s archive of video lecture content. The pre-start resources and are a great way to get up to speed before students’ first formal study course. Find the Pre-start Resources here.
Apprenticeship Guidance and Resources
As the popularity of accountancy and finance apprentices continue to grow, First Intuition put together a selection of useful online resources to inform and answer questions about accountancy apprenticeships. These compiled resources include useful links that inform employers about apprenticeships and their benefits. As well as apprenticeship testimonials, apprenticeship incentives, and the programmes First Intuition offer. Find the Apprenticeship Resources here.