Steps To Accreditation

What does it involve?

If you are considering applying for FCSA Accreditation, you may have questions about what is involved in the compliance review process:

  • How do I apply?
  • Who will carry out the review?
  • What’s involved in the review?
  • What information do I need to provide?
  • What happens if I pass, or if I fail?

As a guide, we have produced this step-by-step summary of what the accreditation compliance review process involves.

Step 1 – Choose a reviewer

The first step involves the applicant selecting a reviewer for the accreditation compliance checks. An applicant can select from the following list:


  • BDO and Brabners
  • Ernst & Young
  • Saffery Champness and Brabners

Step 2 – Notify FCSA

Once you have selected your reviewer, you will need to notify FCSA Chief Executive, Julia Kermode and pay the cost for the review directly to the FCSA. The FCSA will then ask the reviewer to commence the review.

Step 3 – The 3 stage review process

The review involves a 3 stage review process:

  1. Self-assessment – the applicant is asked to answer a set of questions and provide all supporting documents requested. The reviewer will then assess all answers and documents.
  2. Sampling – the applicant will need to provide the reviewer with an anonymized list of workers and pick a sample for review. All requested documents for the sample must be provided.
  3. Site visit – if your documents and sample pass the desk review, the reviewer will visit your premises to interview key members of staff.


Review initial pack and sample selection


Within 2 weeks of receipt.


Review of sample


Within 2 weeks of receipt.


Timing of site visit


 Provisionally agreed at time sample selected; typically 2 weeks after sample information received.


When will I know if my firm has passed?

Your assessors can usually give you a verbal indication on the day of the site visit, assuming that they have received all the information requested, and adequate answers to all of their enquiries.  If the assessors will need to undertake further work after the site visit (e.g. to consider documentation supplied to them during the site visit) then you will be informed of the assessment outcome as soon as possible.  

Steps to Accreditation Workshops

We regularly run workshops for umbrella employers, contractor accountants and CIS payroll service providers, to provide a better understanding of the Accreditation process. To find out when the next workshop will take place, please visit our events page.

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