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Level 3 Finance Apprenticeship scheme

Kick starting your career in finance matters 

If getting your finance career on-track through a mixture of professional training and real-life work experience matters to you. You matter to us.  

Male Level 3 finance apprentice talks to a female finance apprentice sat down in an office.

Our Level 3 Finance Apprenticeship Scheme is an alternative route to university and provides a unique opportunity to understand different aspects of finance and how they all interact with the wider business. You’ll enjoy generous study support; with the time and space you need to complete your qualifications with minimal pressure. Plus, you’ll have plenty of opportunities to put your learning into practice.  

You’ll be mentored and guided by former graduates and senior finance leaders, who will empower you to grow and develop. Working independently, you’ll learn how to excel in high pressured environments. And, as we’re big believers in agile and flexible working and promoters of a diverse and inclusive culture, we’ll encourage you to bring your whole self to work every day.  


  • You need to be aged 18 or over to apply for this scheme.
  • Your starting salary is £17,000
  • The scheme lasts for 4.5 years – 5 years.
  • Our apprenticeships opportunities are located in: Milton Keynes and regional offices.
  • Start date: Applicants must be available to start from September 2022

Who you are matters

We look for an analytical mind and a flair for financial planning. Enthusiastic about your work, you’ll enjoy collaborating with others and have the skills and ability to communicate with a variety of different people.

We invest in you and give you vast exposure to different areas and aspects of finance, because we believe you will be the future of our business. In return, we respect graduates who are driven, hardworking and uphold Network Rail’s values and behaviours.

What you’ll be doing

As an Apprentice you’ll rotate across a range of placements and a variety of departments giving you a unique experience of how finance works within Network Rail. You’ll support finance teams with forecasting, budgeting and analysis as well as taking the lead on meetings and reporting to senior members of the company. Combining a wide variety of live projects and off the job training you’ll hone your skills as a future leader.

For the first two and a half years to three years, you’ll complete rotational placements along with studying for the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) qualification as part of the Level 3 and Level 4 apprentice programme. Alongside this, you’ll gain business knowledge through your various rotations and be involved in a variety of periodic management accounting activities such as balance sheet reconciliations, variance analysis and reporting and business partnering with non-finance functions. 

For the remainder of the scheme

From year 4 onwards, you’ll be able to choose whether to complete placements in our route businesses within the regions whilst studying the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) qualification. Or, whether to use the experience you’ve gained from projects, the understanding of transactional accounting and the knowledge of policies and procedures to add real value to the business areas you’ll be working in.

Due to the huge amount of exposure and experience you gain in the early years of the scheme, you’ll often be in demand to complete complex projects for finance leaders.

You’ll also have the support of your line manager and your apprenticeship talent coach in developing your Personal Development Plan (PDP). We also encourage you to collaborate with other apprentices and attend development days and volunteering opportunities.

What you’ll get out of it

Apprentices complete AAT level 3 and level 4, and CIMA level 7 apprenticeship programme and receive Associate status with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) 


  • AAT Bookkeeper (AATQB) – Level 3 
  • Professional MAAT – Level 4 
  • Associate Chartered Management Accountant (ACMA) 
  • Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) 

Your benefits matter 

  • 28 days annual leave plus bank holidays.  
  • 5 volunteer days to contribute to your favourite causes.  
  • Access to our employee assistance program, to help you with any finance, family, health or wellbeing issues you have. 
  • Up to 75% discount on rail and underground season tickets. 
  • Discounted online shopping. 
  • Healthcare club membership discount. 
  • Childcare vouchers. 
  • Access to a range of pension and insurance schemes. 
  • Two weeks paid reserve leave for members of our Armed Forces community. 

The opportunities it leads to 

At the end of your apprenticeship, you’ll be given the support you need to continue your career at Network Rail and move into one of our finance roles. The Finance Apprentice scheme is now in its sixth year, and we’re proud to say that its first cohort have already secured permanent finance roles with us. This is because we believe in recognising, developing and promoting talent. 

The entry requirements

  • You can’t apply if you’re a graduate already or hold a Level 3 and/or a Level 4 qualification (i.e. AAT). 
  • You can if you’ve achieved a minimum of 5 GCSEs (or equivalent) at grades 5 or higher, must include English and Maths at grade 5 or higher. 
  • Have achieved/predicted to achieve a minimum of grades A*-C from your top 3 A-Levels (or equivalent), not including General Studies. A-level Maths is desirable but not essential. 

We matter to millions. You could too. 

Applications are now closed

Due to the high interest in this programme, we have received enough applications for this intake . We will be accepting applications for our 2023 schemes in October 2022. To be the first to find out please register your interest below.

Discover a different apprenticeship 

If the Finance Apprenticeship isn’t quite what you’re looking for, why not take a look at some of the other apprenticeship schemes we have. You’ll find them here. 

Network Rail have introduced hybrid working and promote flexible and agile working in the offices, this can be agreed with your team and management. 

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