Phil Howard will join the financial reporting faculty; Abby Barnes, Rachel Garnett, Sophie Evans and Hannah Cossins become members of the audit team, while Owen Wheeler joins the tax practice to assist clients across the region.

The North East appointments are part of a record 350 trainee intake for the firm across all locations in the UK – expanding the total headcount at RSM by 10 per cent. The level of new trainees strengthens RSM’s UK offering and highlights a significant uplift in activity.

The new recruits will start their RSM careers on an intensive training course and will also commence study towards their professional ACA, AAT, ATT, ACCA or CTA qualifications.

Steve Railton, office managing partner for RSM in the North East, said: ‘It’s fantastic that we’ve been able to take on so many new starters, reflecting the growth in our North East business. We are committed to attracting, developing and retaining the wealth of talent we have in the region across all areas of our business as each trainee will shape our future firm.’

‘It’s great to welcome all six to our RSM team in the North East and I am sure all our new trainees will make a significant contribution to further strengthening our service offering to our clients.’

RSM offers trainees a range of career opportunities from technical development and overseas secondments to participation in key CR activity, including taking on the Duke of Edinburgh Gold award. This approach to career development was singled out in this year’s Top 100 Employers for School and College Leavers 2016-17.

RSM will shortly be inviting applications for its 2017 intake for graduates and school leavers – further details are available here.