It takes a combination of insight and determination to recruit the right talent for your accounting firm. Recently, respondents to the 2023 State of the Tax Professionals Report shared their top ten tips for a successful accounting firm recruitment strategy. If you also want to ensure that your firm is staffed with the most capable and experienced professionals, here are some priorities to keep in mind.
1. Assess whether candidates are a good fit for your firm on both a professional and personal level
Aside from reviewing a candidate’s educational background, certifications, and relevant skills during the interview process, other questions you can ask include:
- What current industry trends and best practices are they aware of?
- How have they handled specific challenges in the past to approach similar issues in the future?
- What about their qualities regarding initiative, self-motivation, and the ability to work well with others?
You can also reach out to the candidate’s references to get a better sense of their professional and personal attributes.
2. Ensure the salary offered is genuinely competitive
Are you familiar with the market rate for the job role you’re trying to fulfill? Take the time to research the salaries of similar roles at other companies, as well as any comparable job descriptions, experience levels, and qualifications you are seeking. You may also want to look at the job market in your area to identify any regional differences in salaries for related positions.
3. Offer flexible working arrangements
Flexible hours and hybrid working models often allow employees to achieve a healthy work-life balance, which can be beneficial to their mental and emotional needs. If your team is still working remotely — whether in the same city or widespread in different locations — you can also ensure candidates that they will still have the necessary support and resources readily available regardless of where they are located.
4. Highlight your firm’s work environment and culture
Help candidates decide if they will be a good fit at your firm by providing detailed descriptions of your team structure and the types of work that they can expect to do. Be clear about your firm’s values, mission, and workplace policies, and describe the collaborative atmosphere and team dynamics. If you’re meeting candidates in person, consider giving them a tour of your office and introducing them to your team for a more personalized experience.
5. Have the patience to find top-quality candidates
Instead of rushing to fill seats at your firm, take the time to review each applicant’s qualifications and assess their suitability for the role. It also wouldn’t hurt to think long-term and focus on finding candidates who have the potential to grow and develop within the firm.
6. Offer attractive benefits and incentives
On top of the usual benefits like competitive salaries, paid time off, and flexible work arrangements, you can also appeal to candidates by offering:
- Comprehensive health and dental plans
- Tuition reimbursement
- Retirement plans
- Gym memberships
- Career development opportunities
Your firm can also offer additional incentives such as bonuses for exceptional performance and other rewards based on the length of their employment.
7. Have a transparent interview process
Clarity is always key. Prior to interviewing a candidate, send them a document or PDF with clear details about the job responsibilities, the team they will be joining, and the company culture. This will help them better understand the role and your firm, and give them an opportunity to express any concerns they may have.
During the interview, be sure to ask open-ended questions to gain insight into their knowledge and experience. Afterward, always encourage them to reach out if they have any further questions.
8. Offer learning and training opportunities
Educational resources such as webinars, seminars, and workshops can be great ways to accelerate growth by upskilling staff at your firm. You can also provide mentorship opportunities and look into offering continuing education opportunities, like access to updated professional certifications and other courses.
9. Make use of recruiting agencies
Recruiting agencies hold vast knowledge about the job market, meaning they can help your firm make informed hiring decisions. Not only do they have access to a network of potential candidates, but they can offer advice on salary negotiations and determining the right qualifications. This can help reduce the time needed to source and screen applicants, allowing you to focus on other areas of your business.
10. Advertise across multiple and diverse recruiting channels
Make your firm known through in-person events like career fairs, networking events, or even an open house for potential employers. For advertising online, consider creating a professional profile on job search sites such as Indeed or Monster, or use your website or blog to showcase your expertise.
Social media is a superb way to show your human side as well. By regularly posting on LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook, future employees will have a chance to engage with your content while staying up to date on the latest industry trends and news.
The future of accounting firm recruitment
As the tax industry continues to evolve through 2023, so are the ways that accounting firms and individual tax professionals are finding successful ways of recruiting. Read the TRI Talent report to learn more.