Tax season is usually perceived as the holiday season, but for accountants. The reason is that an influx of seasonal accounting jobs takes place during this period. For most accountants this constitutes the perfect time to save money for a special trip or pay off debts.
However, once the tax season is over, so is the cash inflow for most accountants. It is especially difficult to find jobs afterwards, but not impossible. As opposed to the busy tax season, the tax skills require polishing, and accountants must be a lot more aware of the tough competition.
Here are several strategies that are useful to finding an accounting job.
Refine Your Skills
Studies indicate that accounting and finance are among the most difficult jobs to fill, due to the constant changes in expectations from companies. New responsibilities appear every day, from decision support, financial planning, internal controls, analysis to forecasting. So it is no wonder that finding a job in this context can prove quite difficult.
Due to these changes, one mustn’t focus only on their basic education – they should also focus on developing their business and leadership skills through internships, mentoring, and certification.
Although it may seem that after tax season is over, the interest in accountants drops dramatically, things are not quite that way. Specifically, after the economic crisis, businesses have become more aware of the need to take better care of their finances, and thus, they are always looking for skilled people that can handle their money. In fact, accountants are seen even better than before.
This job is becoming more and more demanding with all the changing expectations – there’s no doubt about it. However, it also offers plenty of opportunities to accountants that are willing to take the extra step in polishing and expanding their skills. The consumers are much more sophisticated now than they were 20 years ago, which calls for accountants that have a broader vision.
All of this means that professionals who wish to continue working after the tax season need to stand out from the rest of the candidates. How can one stand out?
One idea is to get all sorts of certifications – from professional organizations or a graduate degree. But perhaps the most important things that a professional can do to become necessary for his potential employer is to learn how to do his job at that company well. That means that one must become familiar with how the company works, its way of serving the customers.
Stepping out of the comfort zone is necessary to evolve and become a better professional. This is especially important for people who wish to advance in their careers. Making arrangements to try other departments is a great skill diversification strategy. The reason to do this is because one can give better expertise if he/she understands the whole mechanism.
Even more, the focus shouldn’t be only on one specific part of accounting – as the undergraduate accounting curriculum is. On the contrary, professionals can try to focus on managerial accounting as well. It turns out that although this specific niche is not so much guided by solid rules, it is quite important in its visionary role – it allows financial planning for the future and the know-how to prevent bad judgment calls from being made. This is a very good path that is by far not very much explored by accountants, but it does offer the possibility to stand out more.
Use Staffing Agencies
Accountants should also get the help of staffing agencies. Agencies specialize in effectively evaluating their skills and potential and make the best matches with companies that look after the exact skills that they can offer.
There is no doubt about the fact that accounting jobs are truly relevant and have a quite clear purpose. Believing that these professionals are needed only during tax season is a mistake since the world of finances has developed a lot and become a power game.
How do you manage to land jobs after the tax season is over? What are your thoughts regarding the strategies presented? Let us know by writing a comment below.