Student opportunities

Considering a career in accountancy?

Apply to train with us

Email your completed application form with a copy of an up to date CV to

As a top 50 firm of Chartered Accountants we will give you a high degree of involvement with our clients and in-depth responsibility from an early stage. You will gain an understanding of the different types of audit and accountancy work and how they will compliment each other. Our friendly and approachable, working environment is centred on support and teamwork.

What is the recruitment process for the graduate roles?

We are looking to recruit students with a minimum new tariff 120 UCAS points and an expected 2:1 degree and above.

All Graduate positions will be based from our Watford, Hertfordshire location. Please make sure this location is feasible for you. All of our recruitment stages are designed to help both you and us make the right decisions. The stages will take the form of:

  • Application assessment
  • Telephone interview
  • Face to face interviews
  • Online assessments

Throughout the process, you will meet a variety of key staff who will support you during the student programme.

Complete our application form and send it to us with a copy of your current CV and a covering letter to; or by post to Human Resources, Hillier Hopkins, Radius House, 51 Clarendon Road, Watford, Herts, WD17 1HP.

ICAEW Authorised Training Employer

What are the progression prospects?

Our expectation of what a new recruit can deliver is set high. It’s not just about passing exams, it’s an opportunity for you to shine and develop a unique talent of your own. During your three year contract you’ll also have access to the deep knowledge base and experience of our team. We will gather feedback from clients, managers, peer groups and Principals to assess your work, progress, personal talents and contribution to the firm. There are many ways to progress at Hillier Hopkins and we have no hesitation in rewarding merit.

Alex Bottom, Managing Principal

“We are looking for talented individuals, who can make a positive contribution to the ​firm and are keen to progress. Opportunities for progression are most definitely here for those who can demonstrate their commitment. I began my career at Hillier Hopkins as in ACA Student in 1997 then progressed through the ranks to Audit Principal, serving on the Board of Management and am now Managing Principal.”

Grant Franklin, Principal

“Our firm has grown from our pool of talented students. Students are a vital asset to us and are held in high regard by the whole team. I too began my career here as an ACA student and also progressed to Managing Principal, a post I held for 8 years.”

Student Opportunities with Hillier Hopkins

What our students say

“The placement process for any university student is one of the most stressful periods however from my very first interaction meeting HR at HH to working with the accounts team in my first few weeks there has been nothing but support & friendliness to ease us in and make that process worthwhile. Any question, no matter how stupid I think it is, will be answered without a seconds thought, and I’m really excited for the next couple of months to see how I can expand my knowledge & build new connections!” Akshay Patel, Work Placement student 2023

“Following my A levels, I applied to many accountancy firms in my local area for an apprenticeship scheme. Hillier Hopkins stood out to me for all the right reasons, from the very beginning of the application process. The selection process was very efficient compared to the other firms I had applied to and I felt reassured at each stage due to the guidance from the  friendly recruitment team.  Both  online and phone interviews had a personal feel about them , which made them more engaging and less robotic. I am very confident I made the best start to my professional career with Hillier Hopkins!” Ume Siddique, CFAB Student

“Initially, everything felt very fast paced; I was straight out on audits and not entirely sure I knew what I was doing. However, with the guidance and support of Audit Seniors and through the feedback process, I was able to develop my practical skills very quickly. When it comes to studying, I have found that the progression rate of my responsibilities at work and the areas that I am studying complement each other nicely. An audit file can seem quite daunting at first, but you will be amazed how quickly you will find this feeling dissipates. Through practical experience, working on different companies in contrasting industries, you swiftly learn how to problem solve and develop working relations with different characters. To aid my development, I was offered the chance to have secondment experiences in both Hillier Hopkins’ Accounts and Tax departments and through these opportunities I discovered that my skillset was better suited to tax; which Hillier Hopkins was happy to support my transition into. The environment at Hillier Hopkins has very much a family feel. Everyone, including senior management, is available and supportive; there is never any awkwardness when it comes to your learning and development.” Emily Fitzmaurice, CTA/ACA Associate

“When I started with Hillier Hopkins , I was initially a bit daunted as my degree wasn’t related to Accounting unlike some of my peer group, but we were all treated on the same playing field when we joined without assumptions about our prior knowledge, making me feel more comfortable. It was good to know that our peer group would study together at times in and out of work and help each other with our individual strengths which was useful at college. The first day of study, like the first day of anything, was overwhelming as everything is new, but every exam you pass makes you feel more confident about yourself and your ability. Initially work wise I felt like a fish out of water too, but you are taught as a group and helped as an individual. There is always someone to ask for help and most of the Seniors have been in your position not so long ago so really helps to relate. Communication with Managers is surprisingly comfortable as I wasn’t expecting them to take the time to go through my queries step by step and explain fully.  You can even have a chat with a Principle in the kitchen just making your coffee without the barriers of position in the way. Everyone is accessible and it feels like a safe space. I especially like the opportunities to get to know other departments better at networking events and I am looking forward to gaining the skills and becoming a senior to help other like I was helped.” Natasha Burgess, Graduate ACA Student

A word from our Learning & Development Manager

"Our student population continues to prove invaluable to the culture of our organisation. We are always overjoyed to see students who maybe start nervously, like rabbits in the headlights, blossom into confident, technically and socially skilful professionals. "
Sandra Pereira

It’s not just about work!

We understand the importance of a work life balance and invite all staff to join in with our social programme throughout the year.

Throughout the year our social secretary organises a variety of events. Previous trips include murder mystery evenings, bowling, ice-skating, theatre trips, and dog racing. We also participate in and encourage fundraising activities and competitions for various charities. Students currently take part in 5 a side football, netball training, golf, cricket matches against other professional firms.

In addition to the above, you’ll be invited to attend the Student Annual Dinner, a black tie affair, with fellow accounting students from across the Home Counties. All staff are invited to the Firm’s Summer & Winter events.

  • Christmas Bonus, paid in December, equivalent to one week’s salary.  (Pro Rata during first year of employment).
  • Auto Enrolment Pension Scheme subject to eligibility (Employer: 5%; Employee: 3%).
  • Private medical cover subject to a qualifying period.
  • Group Income Protection Scheme (non contributory) subject to a qualifying period.
  • Death In Service scheme cover (4x salary).