Genuine job security is having a background that is always in demand so it doesn’t matter what happens to the economy or the organisation that you work for, you can ALWAYS have fantastic opportunities within your grasp.
How do you form the best Accounting Career?
1.) Take a job for the experience it will provide, not for the money. Make sure the accounting job you accept will move you one step further in the direction you want to go even if it is not your ideal job regardless of the industry or responsibility. Talk to your accounting recruitment agent about this, they can be very helpful.
2.) CPA. An accountant without a CPA can have a good career but more opportunities are available to someone who is CPA qualified in corporate accounting. You will be best off if you get it though public accounting. As business becomes more and more regulated, CPA’s will be more in demand…not just for the CFO career path either. All aspects of a business are leaning towards people with public accounting and CPAs…Finance, Operations, IT. Recruitment agencies love CPA or CA qualified accountants.
3.) Keep focused. Never lose sight of where you want your accounting career to go. Keep your career plan in mind and look for opportunities that allow you to get the experience you need. Take the initiative and make sure you stand out amongst your peers – this will get you the experience you desire faster.
4.) Find a mentor. I have had a few great mentors in my life (thank you Michael) but it is up to us to inspire them to want to mentor us. How?
- Overflow with enthusiasm for accounting and learning
- Prove your ability to soak up accounting information like a sponge
- Show interest in learning about your potential mentor’s career path
- Allow yourself to take direction and think outside the box (many cannot do both).
- Keep in touch with 2 to 3 recruitment agents who specialise in accounting. Once they get to know you they will be of great assistance.
Doing these things will not only inspire someone to want to mentor you. It will rejuvenate their own enthusiasm for their job.
5.) As you progress, help others. I know many wonderful accountants who are stuck at a certain level because they don’t have want it takes to manage people. Some don’t want to be managers and some are never given the opportunity. The way to be given the opportunity, is to take initiative in helping others learn without getting paid for it. You will only get so far as an individual contributor.
6.) Partner with a good Recruitment Consultant. Find a Recruitment Consultant who will work with you and help you move through your career smoothly. The right recruitment consultant will always bear you in mind if you have taken the time to build a relationship with them. You might find this person in a recruitment agency that dedicates themselves to accounting or even in a budget recruitment agency that is more generalist – it’s all about the relationship!
The most in demand Corporate Accounting employee is someone who…
- Started out in public accounting.
- Went in to a corporate environment after they got their CPA.
- Gained experience with a publicly listed company.
- And kept gaining experience every year without being stagnant.
As always good luck with your job search!!