Forensic accountants investigate fraudulent activities, uncover money laundering and find missing assets through a combination of investigative techniques and accountancy skills.
As an investigation may lead to judicial proceedings, forensic accountants need to work closely with and sometimes take instruction from legal teams and organisations.
Entry and progression
Forensic accountancy positions tend to be available in larger practices or specialist accountancy practices. Positions are also available in some government agencies and regulatory bodies.
Candidates may enter forensic accountancy from other areas of an organisation such as compliance or anti-money laundering. It is expected that forensic accountants are qualified accountants and are members of a professional body such as ACCA.
Getting the right experience helps trainees gain the competencies needed to enter and move up through their career in forensic accountancy and finance. Areas such as interpreting financial transactions and financial statements (PO11) and monitoring and controlling budgets (PO14) would provide great experience and relate to the performance objectives (PO) which need to be signed off as part of the Practical Experience Requirement (PER).
Career progression in this role can be supported by developing and demonstrating professional behaviours. Take a look at the behavioural competencies in the Competency Framework to reflect on the type of behaviours which are useful for internal auditors.