Ever wanted to know how many applications it takes to fill an accounting job? Or how to write a job description or job posting that drives applies? Or how to avoid losing good candidates after they’ve applied? What are the best practices for hiring accountants?
As Accountingfly’s Director of Fulfillment, Beth Dierker has seen it all. From perfect hires to absolute disasters, Beth’s been there, done that. In part one of our interview, Beth talks about job descriptions, common hiring mistakes and the state of the current hiring market.
Beth: All right, well, I am the Head of Fulfillment at Accountingfly, and while I wear a lot of hats, the majority of my role is leading a team to help our clients hire the best-fit candidates.
I always start by meeting with the client to find out exactly what they’re looking for, understanding the roles, who makes a good fit, what the firm culture is, so there’s a learning on both the cultural and the technical side, and then making sure that the job description that we are advertising actually fits what our clients are looking for.
I also do a lot of the actual recruiting myself. And that involves reviewing resumes, making sure that the job description is bringing in the right kind of candidate, interviewing candidates, and then creating write-ups that describe to our clients what the candidates could bring to them.
Beth: Which is super time-consuming for a busy firm. Oftentimes at a small firm, it’s the firm owner that’s responsible for reviewing all those resumes. So, when they see hundreds of resumes coming in for their position, they wave the white flag.
In those situations, hiring a recruiter is really time saving investment, because they don’t have to trudge through the people who simply aren’t qualified.
Beth: It’s very much of a marketing document. There is a talent war. It’s very much a job seekers’ market. And right now job seekers have a lot of different options open to them. So, you want them to know that your firm is special and to entice them to want to learn more.
Editor: What are the other key components to a great job description?
Beth: The other chunks of information, I think, fall into responsibilities, qualifications, and benefits.
In terms of responsibilities, don’t aim for massive amounts of information. Pick six or eight things that are really reasonable. [Editor: For an SEO checklist, headline writing tips and more, check out Accountingfly’s Ultimate Accounting Job Posting Guide.]
I think I said earlier, if you try to include too much, you’re going to scare people away. They’re going to think that they could never handle everything that you need done. So, the key is to be reasonable and to manage expectations as well.
The qualification section again, just a few bullet points. Tell them roughly how many years they need experience working in the field, and again, any type of educational requirements. What are your must -haves? Is a CPA required or nice to have? Is an EA an acceptable alternative?
Beth: I see firms trying to lowball salary ranges and having unrealistic expectations.
Maybe expecting somebody to handle too many clients – instead maybe two people should be doing the role rather than just one. In today’s market, you have to be competitive on salary and have realistic expectations if you want the top candidates.