ACCA - The global body for professional accountants


Compliance is a crucial function for many companies particularly those operating within the financial services sector. Compliance professionals make sure that the rules and principles set by regulatory bodies and / or governments are adhered to under the guidance of the organisation’s leadership. 

Entry and progression

Compliance teams can be found in financial services organisations, accountancy practices and legal firms. Junior roles are available for candidates who are not qualified or have little relevant experience. 

Employers may expect you to complete bespoke compliance or anti-money laundering qualifications, however there are particular areas of the ACCA qualification which also cover compliance and governance.

There are progression opportunities in compliance itself which can be very financially rewarding. The experience gained in compliance may also form a good basis for a career in more accountancy-specific roles.  

Getting the right experience helps trainees gain the competencies needed to enter and move up through their career in compliance and finance. An area such as preparing financial information for management (PO12) 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 compliance / governance officers.