A BUSINESS and financial firm with a branch in Skipton has announced its continued commitment to invest in young people.

Armstrong Watson Accountants is taking on an additional 26 new trainees across, both graduates and school leavers, across five of the firm’s offices including in, Skipton and Leeds.

The figure includes the appointment of 13 chartered accountancy trainees (up from 11 last year) and 13 trainees studying AAT/ATT, with just under half based in Yorkshire.

The new budding chartered accountants and accounting trainees will join the accounting, audit and tax teams, and will receive hands on experience alongside classroom study as they work towards their qualifications.

Despite the pressures of the COVID-19 pandemic, the firm continues to see an increase in demand for their services as more growing businesses are looking for a wider remit of support and bigger companies, usually attracted to the ‘top ten’ accountancy firms, are turning to the large regional accountancy and advisory business for added value in the form of closer working relationships in specialist fields.

Paul Dickson, CEO and managing partner said: “COVID-19 has without a doubt had a devastating effect on many businesses, however, despite of - and also because of - the economic downturn, it’s more important than ever for business owners to seek professional and wide-ranging advice. With our depth and breadth of experience and services we are able to do this and we are finding that an increasing number of family-owned and owner-managed businesses are turning away from smaller firms, and at the opposite extreme, the top ten, and instead turning to us for this much-needed advice.

“To enable us to continue to support our clients it’s essential we invest in the next generation of accountants and advisers. We have a long history of growing our own talent.”

Armstrong Watson doesn’t see its recruitment drive slowing down and is already on the lookout for its 2021 cohort of trainees.