4 Skills All Accounting Candidates Should Brush Up On

July 31st, 2015

Preparing for an upcoming interview for an accounting position? Be prepared to prove yourself, because if you’re hired, you’ll have some pretty weighty responsibilities. The accounting team is responsible for keeping accurate financial records and ensuring tax bills are paid on time, so companies don’t want to hire just anyone for the job.

You’ll need to spend time brushing up on accounting principles, software and other pertinent skills to make it clear you’re someone that can be trusted to excel in such an important position.

4 Key Accounting Skills You Need to Have

If you want to land a great accounting job at a reputable company, be sure to demonstrate your proficiency with these four skills:

  1. Accounting Software Fluency: If possible, find out what type of accounting software the company uses and familiarize yourself with it. If you’re unable to find out which program the team is using, acquaint yourself with popular options like QuickBooks or FreshBooks. Knowing your way around common platforms shows that you’re tech savvy and able to catch onto new software quickly.
  2. GAAP Knowledge: Companies want to hire an accounting professional who has the knowledge needed to keep their books in good standing. Refresh your memory of generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP), including basic accounting principles and guidelines, detailed rules and standards issues by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB) and the generally accepted industry practices.
  3. Problem Solving Abilities: The accounting field can be unpredictable, so you need to show the interviewers that you can handle any problem thrown your way. Think of examples of past professional situations you’ve been in where you had to quickly analyze data and use the information to work through an issue. Offering solid evidence that you’re great in a crisis will certainly impress the hiring manager.
  4. Communication Skills: Accountants work with many different departments — and sometimes even clients — each and every day. Practice presenting financial information in an easy-to-understand manner that people can relate to. Impress the interviewer with your ability to understand complex financial situations and explain them to others without sounding condescending.

Searching for a challenging new accounting position?

Contact Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. We offer access to more professional accounting job opportunities than any other Northwest employment service — guaranteed!

3 Ways to Improve Employee Retention

July 24th, 2015

If you’ve been doing a lot of hiring lately — but not because your company is growing at rapid pace — it’s time to make a change. High levels of turnover can ruin your company. If you want to be successful in the long-term, you need a team of loyal employees who are committed to your organization. Make it a priority to get to the bottom of your retention issues now, so it doesn’t continue to hold your company back.

3 Ways to Improve Employee Retention

Tired of accepting resignation letters from great employees? Use these three strategies to boost your retention rate:

Choose Better Managers

A recent Gallup survey revealed that approximately 50% of workers have quit their jobs to get away from a bad boss. Some people are very good employees, but extremely bad managers. If you have people in management positions who really shouldn’t be there, there’s a very good chance this is why your turnover levels are high. Choose managerial level employees very carefully and if you notice a problem, take action immediately.

Promote from Within

Your best employees excel at their positions, but that doesn’t mean they intend to stay in the same roles forever. It’s beyond discouraging for hardworking, skilled employees to be passed up for a promotion by an external candidate, without even being considered for the job. Make your company a place where top talent can learn and grow, so they don’t feel forced to accept a position elsewhere to move up the ladder.

Make People Feel Valued

You hired your employees because they’re smart people with great ideas, but do you let them share their thoughts and opinions? No one enjoys feeling like their ideas don’t count. Stop micromanaging your team and trust them enough to complete assignments their own way. This allows people to feel like they’re actively contributing to the team — and their ideas may even save your company time and money. Employees are much less likely to leave a job when they’re happy and fulfilled.

Need a little help lowering your turnover rate?

Partner with Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. Our team will help you find top Seattle accounting talent who wants to grow their career at your company.

The Importance of Finding the Right Company Culture for You

July 17th, 2015

Anyone who has ever worked in an office knows the importance of company culture. A job may seem great on paper, but if you don’t fit in with the rest of the team, you’re going to be miserable. When you’re interviewing for a job, company culture isn’t always boldly on display. You may need to read between the lines and dig a little deeper to learn what it’s really like to work for the organization.

Conduct background research online, by reviewing their website, social media pages and reviews on sites like Glassdoor.com to gain valuable insights. It’s also wise to arrive a little early for your interview, to get a feel for the work environment before getting ushered away into a conference room. You may not be able to observe too much, but sometimes the little things are the most telling.

How to Find Your Ideal Cultural Fit

It’s important to know what type of company culture you’re most comfortable in before starting the interview process. Not quite sure what works best for you? Use these three steps to find out:

Determine What Motivates You

Certain elements of a work environment can make or break your productivity. Think about the type of situation that stimulates you the most. Maybe you prefer to work alone in a quiet environment? Or perhaps you thrive as part of a team working under pressure? There’s no wrong answer. The only way you can shortchange yourself is not being honest about your motivators.

Decide What Makes You Happy

The same things that motivate you may not actually make you happy. Think about a job you really loved and consider why it made you feel fulfilled. Maybe it had a late start time, which suited you well because you’re not a morning person? Determine what it takes to make you happy at work, then don’t accept a position until you find a company that can meet your needs.

Gauge Lifestyle Fit

If you have to rework your entire life for a job, you’re probably not going to last very long. For example, many companies offer catered meals to employees working long hours, but if you’d rather be eating with your family, you’ll resent having to spend this precious time at the office instead. Or if you enjoy working in a sociable office, don’t accept a position where everyone keeps to themselves and leaves promptly at 5pm.

Ready to take your accounting career to the next level?

Contact the experienced Seattle-based recruiters at Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. We specialize in matching top accounting talent with leading companies in the Seattle area.

4 Ways to Prevent Employee Burnout Within Your Staff

July 10th, 2015

Behind every successful company is a team of highly engaged workers. However, all it takes to throw this balance off is one overworked, stressed out person. Employee burnout can have some pretty serious side effects, such as decreased productivity, lower levels of job satisfaction, conflict among staff members, absenteeism, high levels of turnover and decreased loyalty to the organization.

If you’ve noticed that some of your employees seem to be on the verge of burnout, it’s important to take immediate action. This issue can result in a rapid downward spiral, so get it under control now before it takes your team down.

4 Ways to Prevent Employee Burnout

Need a little help pulling your team back from the brink of a breakdown? Use these four tips to decrease stress and exhaustion levels:

Assign Manageable Workloads

There’s a big difference between giving employees challenging assignments and burying them with an unrealistic workload. As a manager, you’re well aware of how much each person can handle. If you know an employee is working hard all day, but still staying late and coming in early each day, it’s time to cut back on the amount of pressure you’re putting on them.

Grant Promotions Wisely

A person may be great at their current job, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they have the skills and experience to excel in a higher level position. Think long and hard before promoting an employee, to make sure they can handle the added responsibility. You don’t want to lose a good worker because you mistakenly promoted them too fast.

Encourage Employees to Take Breaks

Does most of your team work through lunch? If so, institute a policy requiring them to take this time for themselves. People need breaks throughout the day to relax and refresh their minds. Taking a walk outside or browsing Facebook for a few minutes helps to lower stress levels, allowing people to return to work feeling rejuvenated and ready to tackle the next item on their to-do list.

Keep the Lines of Communication Open

Employees are much less likely to burn out when you clearly communicate your expectations, goals and project deadlines. Assignments aren’t as intimidating when you’re on the same page with your team, because they know what’s coming down the pipeline. It’s also important to make your staff feel comfortable coming to you with questions, comments and concerns. People need to feel like they can come to you if they’re feeling overwhelmed and need a little help.

Searching for Top Accounting and Finance Talent in the Seattle Area?

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Top Accounting and Finance Talent in Seattle

July 8th, 2015

As Seattle’s leading financial and accounting recruiting firm, Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing has access to the industry’s premier talent available for hire. Here are several candidates currently available: Read the rest of this entry »