Filling the Roles

Peter BohanDirector of Firm Administration

25 October 2022

The job market in the accounting/finance world has progressively been getting tighter and tighter over the past few years. The baby boomers are fast disappearing from the workforce and finding good, qualified people to fill positions has become more challenging. Many job seekers today are looking for either hybrid or fully remote. As an employer in competitive field, you may need to evaluate your work environment to see if it is a competitive in today’s world – If the work for the position can be done remotely, you may want to consider remote candidates. Some positions may have interaction with students and other departments so some in person time may be required but does the person need to be in the office all the time? Could hybrid work for you and your staff? Above all, prospective employees are looking for flexibility from the employers. The flexibility may extend to when the work is being done – some people want to start early and end early, others are night owls consider if allowing earlier and later start times could work for your organization. Certainly, rules for nonexempt employees mean that the employer must be careful when scheduling their work in regards to rules established by the FSLA.

Finding The Right Employees

What can an employer do to help the odds for finding good people? First, understand that you are competing for the best people available. This means that you need to do a better job than other firms who are looking for the same candidates. Below are some suggestions on how to accomplish this:

• Speed – make a commitment to review candidates who have responded to your job posting or have been referred to you by a recruiter or a staff member no less than daily. If you see someone that you think is worth interviewing, contact them that day and prioritize setting a time to speak with them.

• Plan the process – decide who needs to be part of the hiring process – who needs to interview/meet them? Can the interviews be done remotely or in person? How quickly will you be making a decision?

• Create a good job description. This will help you better understand the skill set required for the position and identify the candidates that best match the skills needed. Do not include educational or work experience that is not necessary for the position – why narrow the potential employment pool.

• You are competing for candidates. The best candidates will generally have more than one option so you need to evaluate the candidate but you also need to explain to them why they should consider your organization. Make sure you can give them an overview of the organization’s employee benefits, the work environment, paths for advancement (if it is applicable) and anything else you can think of that will help them make a decision if you were to offer them a position. Do not oversell the position or the organization – you do not the person be disappointed after they start with you.

• How to find people –

• your own employees can be a great way to find people. Do you offer a bonus for employee referrals? If you do, then make sure the employees are aware of the bonus program. If you do not offer a referral bonus, then maybe you should consider adding one.

• Job boards – these seem to come in and out of favor and some boards are better than others in certain fields. Without endorsing any, Indeed has pretty broad coverage but as mentioned there are many options here.

• Recruiters – they are by far your most expensive option. Depending on the circumstances, the position may be important enough to justify the fee. Most recruiters work on a contingency basis – you only pay the fee if you hire a candidate that they present to you. Most recruiting firms work on a 25% commission of the first year’s compensation.

The employment market is more challenging but there are still very good candidates out there. A focused and concerted effort can yield good results.

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