3 Reasons to Have a Career Mentor in Seattle

April 18th, 2014

It’s not always easy to know how to achieve your career ambitions. Each day you’re faced with decisions that take you one step further down your career path ─ sometimes in the right direction, other times veering off course.

A career mentor is an invaluable resource helping you to achieve your professional goals. These trusted advisors understand exactly where you’re at in your career and want to help guide you in the right direction.

3 Reasons to Have a Career Mentor
Not sure you really need a career mentor? These three reasons explain why you definitely do:

  1. Learn from a Seasoned Professional: A mentor understands where you’re at in your career because they’ve been there themselves. These professionals have worked their way up the ladder, so they’re able to give you solid advice to further your own career. Working with them can help take your career to the next level ─ and fast ─ as you won’t have to waste time making (the inevitable) big mistakes along the way.
  2. Make Valuable Connections: In business, who you know can often be the key to success. A mentor is established in their position. They’ve made many powerful connections and if you impress them with your hard work and diligence, there’s a good chance they’ll be willing to help you out. Whether they groom you for success at their own company or praise your potential to their associates, these relationships can provide you with the starting point you need to excel your career.
  3. Have a Trusted Advisor to Count On: It’s always comforting to have someone you trust to turn to with questions about your career. Whether you’re having trouble at work or need a little confidence boost to ask for a promotion, a mentor can help you find solutions to challenging problems. Having a mentor means you never have to navigate you career path alone.

 

Want to elevate your career to the next level? Contact Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. We are the leaders at matching specialized accounting talent with top local companies, offering temporary/contract, temp-to-hire, and direct-hire opportunities. Our talented team of Seattle recruiters look forward to assisting you in your job search!

3 Tips for Answering Tough Interview Questions

April 4th, 2014

Preparation is essential for succeeding in a Seattle job interview, as questions aren’t designed to be easy. One of the most nerve-wracking topics an interviewer can touch on is questioning why you left or are planning to leave your current position. While you always want to be honest, it’s important to find a way to package the truth in a positive manner.

3 Tips for Answering Tough Interview Questions
Don’t let a challenging interview question like “Why did you leave your last position?” ruin your chance of getting the job. Prepare a winning response to this tricky question using the following three methods:

  1. Tell the Truth: It’s not always fun to tell the truth about why you’re planning to leave or have already left a position, but honesty is essential in this situation. Interviewers respect candidates who are honorable enough to tell the truth, even if you were fired. This says a lot about your character and shows you can be trusted. There’s obviously a reason you’re looking for a new job, so find a way to make it work for you ─ not against you.
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  3. Speak Highly of Your Employer: While you should be honest about why you’re leaving, it’s important to put a positive spin on the situation. You absolutely cannot reveal any dissatisfaction with your current employer to the interviewer. No one wants to hire someone who speaks negatively of their employer, as there’s a good chance you’ll end up doing the same to their company down the road. It’s important to turn your job hunt into something positive. For example, saying you’ve really enjoyed your current position but feel it’s time to move onto another job with more responsibility, is a great response.
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  5. Keep it Short: There’s no need to provide a long, rambling response to this question. In fact, the more you say, the more likely you are to reveal unnecessary information. Make your response short and to the point and if anything is unclear, the interviewer will ask follow-up questions.

 

Do your job interview skills need a little sharpening? We’re here to help! At Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing, we have access to top professional accounting job opportunities. Contact our team of experience Seattle recruiters today to get started.

New Job? Use These Apps to Find Lunch Near Work

March 28th, 2014

Getting adjusted to life at a new company takes time. However, if you’ve just started work in a new area of town, you’re also tasked with learning your way around the neighborhood.

While some things can be learned gradually, others present a more pressing matter. Lunch is certainly one of those items that must be made a priority. It’s important to find your new go-to spots as soon as possible, so you’re never left hungry.

Apps to Help You Find Lunch Fast

Nothing is worse than trying to take in an overabundance of new information on an empty stomach. Download any of the following apps to find your favorite lunchtime fare ─ and fast:

  • TruxMap Lite: This is your app if your favorite type of food is served from a food truck. Available for download on both the iPhone and Android, TruxMap Lite will tell you what food trucks are currently in your area and which ones are scheduled to arrive later in the day.
  • Foursquare: For those who like to switch lunch cuisine up, the Foursquare app is a great option, as it makes variety easy. Simply type in the kind of fare you’re looking for and your location to see a list of nearby places that fit your needs. Additionally, the app also provides user reviews and discounts, so you can be sure you’re getting the best for your money. The app is available for both iPhone and Android users.
  • GrubHub: A new employee often has a jam-packed orientation schedule, sometimes making it difficult to even get outside and get lunch. If you find yourself in this situation, GrubHub can help. The app is available for both iPhone and Android users, allowing you to easily find restaurants that deliver to your company, place an order, and wait for it to arrive ─ lunch at its easiest.
  • Dining Deals: Using the new job as a way to start fresh on your finances? The Dining Deals App can help you stick to a budget by finding discounts at restaurants in your area, so you never have to pay full price. It’s available for download on Android only. However, BiteHunter serves as a similar alternative for iPhone users.

 

Ready to take the next step in your career? Contact Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. We are the leaders at matching specialized accounting talent with top local companies, offering temporary/contract, temp-to-hire, and direct-hire opportunities.

Is Your Resume Recruiter Ready?

March 21st, 2014

Your resume can make or break your job hunt. A well written one impresses recruiters and helps you get an interview, while a resume that’s just okay won’t get you very far. If you want to succeed in your job hunt, it’s important to have a resume that makes you stand out from the crowd.

5 Tips to Improve Your Resume

Planning to start looking for a new job in the near future? Or maybe you’ve already begun your search and are wondering why you’re not having any luck? Use these five tips to touch your resume up:

  1. Keep it Professional: Using colored backgrounds and funky fonts will certainly make your resume stand out ─ but not in a good way. Always use a standard font, such as Times New Roman or Universal, in black, on your resume. No exceptions.
  2. Proofread, Proofread, Proofread: The importance of this step cannot be emphasized enough. Spelling a word wrong on your resume makes you appear careless. No one wants to hire someone who doesn’t care enough about their career to proofread their resume.
  3. Customize It: When it comes to finding a great job, your resume is not a one-size-fits-all tool. Tailor it for each specific job to highlight your relevant experience. You have to sell yourself to each company to show them why you’re the best person for the job and this is the first step of the process.
  4. Get to the Point: Most recruiters won’t read your entire resume. Instead, they’ll skim through it to read the main points, so it’s important to highlight those up front. Do your best to keep the entire document to one page, as anything more is distracting. Shorten the margins if you need a bit more space. However, if you simply must make your resume two pages, be sure to balance the information on each page, instead of just putting one section on the second page.
  5. Include Action Items: Don’t assume a recruiter is going to read your resume and know how great you are ─ tell them. Instead of just saying you helped your current company cut payroll costs, include a percentage or dollar sign. For example, “Developed new payroll procedure that cut payroll costs by 15 percent.”

 
Need a little help polishing your resume? Contact the expert Seattle accounting recruiters at Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. We’re glad to review your resume and make suggestions for improvement. We look forward to assisting in your career search.
 

What to do After You Accept a New Employment Position

March 14th, 2014

If you’ve just accepted a new position ─ congratulations! Out of all the candidates the company interviewed, they chose you and that is very exciting.

Whether you’re moving up the corporate ladder or into a new field you’ve been hoping to break into, a job change is a huge life event. A celebration is certainly in order, but there’s also a number of other important matters to attend to, including:

  1. Break the News to Your Current Boss: The mere thought of going into your boss’s office and resigning can be very nerve-wracking, but there’s no way around it. It’s essential that you tell your boss about your new job as soon as possible and before telling anyone else at the company. Not only is it a matter of respect to handle it in this manner, it will also help you to avoid burning bridges if you ever need a reference or want to return to the company in the future.
  2. Create a Transition Plan: Your resignation is likely going to (temporarily) cause your boss and your team members some extra work. While you shouldn’t feel guilty about this, you should do your part to ease the transition as much as possible. Do your best to help determine who is best suited to take over each of your tasks, then schedule a time for training. Make yourself available for questions to ensure everyone knows what they’re doing before your last day.
  3. Wrap Up Loose Ends: Be prepared for the frenzy of exit paperwork headed your way. You’ll likely need to write an official resignation letter, sign forms to transfer your retirement funds into your new employer’s plan, complete exit surveys, fill out COBRA forms if you’re going to keep your current employer’s health insurance, and complete other forms of necessary paperwork as part of the transition.
  4. Be Proactive on Requests from Your New Employer: Expect to hear from your new employer at least a few times before your first day on the job. HR may need you to complete paperwork prior to your start date, your new boss may call or email with questions, and your new team members may reach out to welcome you to the group. It’s essential that you respond to these communications in a timely manner to build a position relationship with them. Failing to return calls and emails in a timely manner ─ or at all ─ is rude and may cause them to wonder if they made the right decision.
  5. Relax a Little: If possible, take a few days in between jobs to recharge your batteries. Get a few things done around the house that you’ve been wanting to accomplish and make some time for yourself. You’ve earned it!

 

Ready to get started on a fulfilling new job? Contact Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. Experts in staffing Seattle Washington, we’ll help you find a new position that makes you excited to go to work each day.

6 of the Most Progressive Accounting Careers

March 6th, 2014

Accounting is a very broad field with limitless career possibilities. There’s a constant demand for accounting professionals, as every company needs someone to keep their finances in order. Additionally, as tax laws change, new fields emerge, and the government imposes tighter business regulations, new positions will continue to surface.

Top 6 Progressive Accounting Careers
Whether you’re just getting started in the accounting field or looking to make a change, these six careers are a great way to gain valuable experience that can be used to move up the ladder:

  1. Tax Accountant: Due to the demands of tax season, many people avoid this career path at all costs. However, opting for work as a tax accountant can offer many benefits. Experience working in tax early on can open the doors to many other accounting positions. Additionally, there’s always a demand for CPAs, as taxes are here to stay.
  2. Financial Reporting: Every organization needs an accounting professional to handle their reporting needs. Workers in this position are typically tasked with responsibilities such as making financial projections, preparing and analyzing accounting statements, and document record-keeping.
  3. Forensic Accountant: These professionals use a combination of accounting and financial skills to provide litigation support and investigative accounting services. Common responsibilities typically include performing forensic research to recover funds and assets, conducting forensic analysis of financial data, and preparing forensic accounting reports.
  4. Government Accountant: A government accountant works with the federal government, state and local agencies, or a combination of both to record and prepare financial reports according to government accounting principles and standards. Professionals may assist government authorities in evaluating budgets, estimating revenues, and making necessary adjustments to social programs.
  5. Environmental Accountant: Environmental accountants are tasked with analyzing the internal and external costs of the environmental impact of business decisions. This field is currently on the rise, as companies begin to place a greater emphasis on green practices.
  6. Bookkeeper: Every small business and non-profit organization relies on a bookkeeper to keep their accounts in order. Bookkeepers may handle a variety of tasks, including managing the general ledger, producing financial statements and other reports, completing payroll, preparing invoices, paying bills, and more.

 

Looking for jobs that will provide you with a strong foundation to grow your career? Contact Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. We are the leaders at matching specialized accounting talent with top local companies, offering temporary/contract, temp-to-hire, and direct-hire opportunities.
 

4 Questions Accountants Should Ask in a Job Interview

February 7th, 2014

When preparing for an accounting interview, it’s important to remember you don’t just need to have responses to common questions rehearsed and ready to go ─  you’ll also need to be ready with a list of questions.

At the end of the meeting, there’s a very good chance the interviewer will ask if you have any questions. If you think this is a mere formality, you’re sorely mistaken. This is a very common tactic used to evaluate your level of interest in working for the firm. Use this opportunity to ask educated questions, showing that you’ve done your homework on the firm and are genuinely interested in learning more about it.

4 Questions Every Accountant Should Ask an Interviewer
It’s important to remember that a job interview isn’t just the time for the firm to decide if they want you on their team ─ it’s also your chance to see if it’s a place you want to work.

Ask these four questions on your next accounting job interview to gain a deeper insight into the firm and demonstrate your extensive knowledge of the field:

  1. What opportunities are available to help me grow my career?
    At first glance, this question may appear presumptuous, but it’s not. Asking about future career growth shows the firm is part of your long-term plan. The firm doesn’t want to waste time grooming you, only to have you move on to other opportunities in a few years, after gaining more experience.
  2. What types of clients would I be working with?
    Clients are an accounting firm’s top priority, so demonstrating a deep interest in them from the start is a great way to make a good impression. Tailor your questions as much as possible, by asking about specific clients and industries you know the firm covers. This shows that you’ve both done your research on the firm and are genuinely interested in their clients.
  3. How has the firm responded to (insert specific industry regulation)?
    Showcase your up-to-date knowledge of accounting rules and regulations by choosing a recent issue and asking how the firm responded to it. Ask how it impacted their clients and what type of adjustments the firm has been forced to make to be compliant with future strategies.
  4. What types of internal technology programs does the firm utilize?
    Every firm has a different way of doing things. This is your chance to get a glimpse of the firm’s internal processes and procedures, to see if you’d be comfortable working there. Probing into daily life at the firm also shows the interviewer you’re genuinely interested in what it would be like to work there and are trying to envision yourself as one of the team.

 

Searching for a challenging new accounting opportunity? Contact Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. We are the leaders at matching specialized accounting talent with top local companies, offering temporary/contract, temp-to-hire, and direct-hire opportunities.

Bridging the Generation Gap Between Accountants

January 17th, 2014

It’s never been easy managing a team of accountants varying in age from early 20’s to mid-60’s and beyond. However, the generational gap between the aging Baby Boomer population and the emerging group of Millennials ready to take over the workforce has never been more apparent.

Younger workers grew up in a world of technology, where they never had to use an eraser or change the tape on their adding machines. These employees will never know what it’s like to wish there was a way to automate an accounting system, as doing things manually is now a thing of the past.

Three Ways to Bridge the Generation Gap

Helping older and younger accountants meet in the middle may seem like a somewhat daunting task, but it’s definitely possible to do so. Follow these three ideas to bridge the generation gap at your company:

  • Promote Mutual Respect.
    There’s often a barrier between older and younger employees, even when the two groups want to find common ground. It’s important for younger workers to respect their senior peers for the years of valuable experience they’ve gained working in the field. Conversely, older employees must also respect the new, innovative ideas brought by younger workers.
  • Allow Different Generations to Learn from One Another.
    The two generations really have a lot to learn from one another. The on-the-job experience a person gains from a long-lasting career is irreplaceable. Younger employees need older workers to serve as their mentors, guiding them to success. However, younger employees are extremely tech savvy and have a whole crop of fresh ideas to offer, proving there really may be a better method of doing things than how the company “has always operated” in the past.
  • Let the Younger Generation Have a Voice.
    In the past, younger workers were intimated by senior management and were willing to silently do as they were told. This is no longer the case, as today’s crop of young people expect their voice to be heard. Companies that listen to what they have to say will build loyalty and a team of employees truly invested in the company, while those who continue to operate the old-fashioned way will likely not be as successful.

Getting older and younger staff members to work together as a team can help your company achieve its goals and create a succession plan. Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing is here to help you build a successful team. One of the top Seattle employment agencies, we have a network of skilled accounting and finance professionals ready get to work at your company.

Hiring in Seattle? Start 2014 Strong with These Tips

January 10th, 2014

There’s no better time to start fresh than the beginning of a new year. Now that 2014 has officially arrived, you’re probably working hard to create a plan for success this year.

Starting the year off by hiring new employees is an exciting way to foster success. A larger staff can make your business more productive and allow for the generation of many new and innovative ideas.

Three Tips to Effectively Manage Your Workforce
Before beginning to add to your workforce, it’s important to assess your company to make sure you have a plan in place to effectively manage both your new hires and existing staff members. Use these three tips to better manage your team in 2014:

  1. Create a Positive Work Environment.
    Your company is only as strong as the employees behind your brand. It’s important to keep them happy, so they value their jobs and enjoy coming to work each day. If you don’t already offer perks like paid time off and flexible working arrangements, consider implementing these changes in the new year. Managers also play a key role in an employee’s level of job satisfaction, so make sure everyone in these leadership roles has received proper training on effective management techniques.
  2. Provide Proper Training.
    Make sure new employees attend a new hire orientation to get them acquainted with your company values and what you stand for. Additionally, it’s essential that each person is thoroughly trained on how to do their job. Not receiving proper training can lead to frequent and expensive errors, as well as levels high employee turnover. It’s also important to realize that training doesn’t end at orientation ─ workers should constantly be given the opportunity to enhance their skills, even those who have been in their jobs for years.
  3. Open the Lines of Communication.
    People are more excited and engaged in their work when they feel like their opinion counts. Listen to what your employees have to say and work with them to set goals that encourage personal and professional growth. Showing people that you value their thoughts and are invested in them as a person creates asatisfied workforce.

Ready to start the new year off right by finding hardworking, talented staff to fill open positions at your company? Contact Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing. One of the Seattle’s top financial and accounting employment agencies, we have a network of skilled professionals ready to join your team.

Create a Cover Letter that Helps You Stand Out in Seattle

December 6th, 2013

The importance of not just creating a cover letter ─ but a high-quality, first-rate one ─ cannot be stressed enough. It’s the first impression you’ll give a potential employer, which will likely make or break your chances of scoring an interview with the company. In fact, many hiring managers will never even look at your resume if they’re not captivated by your cover letter.

How to Write an Exceptional Cover Letter

Now that you understand the value of writing a dazzling cover letter, it’s time to get to work. The more time and effort you put into your cover letter, the better results you’re likely to gain from it.

Follow these five tips when writing your cover letter:

  • Make it Personal.
    Writing one generic cover letter and sending it to 50 different companies isn’t going to get your anywhere. Tailor each one to the specific position you’re applying for. This includes addressing it to the proper hiring manager, using the exact job title listed in the posting, and explaining exactly why you’d like to work for the company.
  • Explain Why You are a Great Fit.
    Instead of simply listing your own accomplishments and skill set, use the requirements listed in the posting to explain the value you would bring to the company if hired. Focus on what you can do for the company, not what the company could do for you.
  • Proofread, Proofread, Proofread.
    The importance of making sure your cover letter contains no errors cannot be stressed enough. Misspelled words, awkward phrasing, and grammatical mistakes make you look sloppy. Most employers will automatically disqualify you if your cover letter contains these, so proofread and if at all possible, ask someone else to review it too.
  • Get to the Point.
    Your cover letter is likely one of many the hiring manager must read to narrow down the candidate list. It’s important to make your main points immediately, so the person doesn’t simply get bored and move on to the next applicant. Keep your cover letter brief at two to three paragraphs and use bullet points to highlight your main points.
  • Close Effectively.
    Wrap your cover letter up by very briefly explaining why you’re the best candidate for the job. Do this in one or two sentences to avoid rambling and repeating yourself.

 

Are you in the market for an exciting new challenge in the accounting field? One of the top Washington temp agencies, we are the leaders at matching specialized accounting talent with top local companies, offering temporary/contract, temp-to-hire, and direct-hire opportunities. Contact the expert Seattle recruiters at Accountingpros Recruiting + Staffing today!