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Leading NYC Accounting & Finance Hiring Trends

Posted by Jeff Pelliccio on May 1, 2017 9:00:00 AM

In ICS insights, hiring trends

Like so many other industries, emerging and evolving technologies and innovations are disrupting accounting and finance. JPMorgan Chase CEO Jamie Dimon acknowledges startups are working to create alternatives to traditional banking. Technology-driven trends include automated data entry, the growth of DIY accounting software, and innovative business models according to experts. 

That means recruiting and hiring in accounting and finance has to be responsive and flexible to changing industry conditions. Top trends include recent graduates in high demand, the difficulty of retaining talent, using social media, changing the role of accounting professionals, and high demand for temp work. And these trends are more pronounced in top metropolitan areas including Chicago and New York City, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.  

Industry Surveys Show High Demand for New Graduates  

Professional associations in the finance and accounting industries show hiring of grads with master’s and bachelor’s degrees has increased more than 10 percent in the last five years. The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants’ recent study shows optimism for future enrollment for accounting bachelor’s degrees and a steady number of candidates sitting for the Uniform CPA Examination since 2009.  

This means that a focus on recruiting on-campus is more important than ever. According to Fortune.com, accounting, banking, and consulting recruiters are on-campus earlier and earlier to grab up top junior talent, not waiting for senior year or graduation. If your recruiters aren’t on campus in September talking to junior accounting and finance majors, your company is losing.  

Accounting and Auditor Demand Makes Retention More Difficult  

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that the demand for accountants and auditors will rise 11 percent through 2024, giving finance talent an extreme edge in the job market. Jeffrey McKinney, writing for Accountingweb.com, reports that accounting firms are finding it more and more expensive to hire and keep top talent. Using temp agencies in Chicago and New York City where these costs are even higher can be a way to manage them.  

Alternatively, companies have to offer competitive compensation and benefits and provide a reasonable schedule and pleasant work environment to be able to hire and keep accounting and finance professionals now and in the near future. Or go without the industry talent needed to be profitable and competitive.  

The Accounting Role is Changing  

Accounting and finance professionals traditionally focused on crunching numbers and working independently. Technology and the Internet are quickly changing that focus. Industry experts like CEO of automatic bill payment solution Entryless Mike Galarza know that employers expect so much more than running the numbers and balancing the ledgers from the accountants they hire.  

Galarza says that communications, strategy, data analysis, and business coaching are all skills and abilities employers expect from accounting roles today. Thanks to quickly changing economic realities like the Affordable Care Act and constantly evolving tax laws, more and more of those in accounting and finance are specializing in areas like benefits and tax compliance. That means recruiters are looking for ever-more-specialized skills and abilities in the candidates they seek. That includes temp agencies, especially temp agencies in Chicago and temp agencies in NYC.  

Benefits Beat Perks for Today’s Accounting New Hires  

Free coffee and snacks, a ping pong table in the breakroom, and a casual dress code are no match for what accounting candidates and new hires are looking for today. The best candidates look for the best benefits. The 2015 Jobvite Recruiter Nation Survey showed that 63 percent of new hires want medical and dental insurance and 44 percent want a 401(k).  

A recent Glass Door Employment Confidence Survey found that nearly 79 percent of employees would rather have new or additional benefits than a pay raise. Top benefits wanted? Health insurance, vacation/paid time off, performance bonus, paid sick days, and 401(k) plan. If your company doesn’t offer these benefits, you’ll lose the top candidates you need. 

Temporary Staffing In Demand  

Along with the challenge of hiring the accountants and finance professionals they need, employers need to watch the bottom line. That means using talent only when you need to. The U.S. Department of Commerce reports that the spring 2015 number of U.S. temp jobs reached nearly three million, an all-time high.  

Working with a staffing firm when you need talent makes economic sense in many cases. When your company needs accounting and finance professionals in Chicago and New York City, contact ICS. We can help with contract, temp-to-perm, and permanent placement. We’re recognized not only as a top staffing firm but also as a great company to work for. Find talent now, and you'll see that we stand out from other temp agencies in Chicago and NYC.