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Author Topic: Small accounting practice owner asking advice on where to find talent  (Read 438 times)

Brenticus

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Hey guys,

I own a small accounting firm in Canada and need to recruit top level talent.  Currently thinking of talking to a recruiter but ideally I would like to find the type of person who would frequent these forums.  I need someone intelligent and able to manage a decent number of accountants who share a lot in common with Urist....
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nenjin

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I'll give you my two cents.

I work in the software side of the heavy truck industry. We deal with "bookwatchers", bookkeepers and to a lesser extent, accountants as they try to understand their daily transactions, what accounts to hit with what transactions, and generally investigating accounting discrepancies.

So basically every level of engagement with accounting, from the non-professional up to the professional level.

What I've noticed is that veteran bookkeepers have their way of doing things and they're very set in them. These methods do not always track with General Accepted Accounting Practice.

Our guy here, who has a business background and some experience in accounting, is constantly in conflict with business bookkeepers who don't adhere to GAAP, either because they don't understand it, they don't actually care, or they're doing something which GAAP would reveal as....problematic.

So perhaps my best advice would be....find someone not too long out of school, with top marks and perhaps a good reference in their first one or two jobs. Someone who is in synch with GAAP and who hasn't yet gotten bitter and jaded by working in an industry so they've figured out strategies so they can do their work at the end of the day.
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Trekkin

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I need someone intelligent and able to manage a decent number of accountants who share a lot in common with Urist....

Maybe don't express contempt for your existing employees while you look for more of them?
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Doomblade187

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Thought: if there's a supervisor below you, ask them what their needs are. If not, do an "abilities survey" to see where they feel they lack skill or experience. You can do this under the guise of training if you want, but I personally, as an employee, recommend honesty.
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ChairmanPoo

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I need someone intelligent and able to manage a decent number of accountants who share a lot in common with Urist....

Maybe don't express contempt for your existing employees while you look for more of them?
No! Bread and shit for the workers!  If they complain, take away the bread!
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PineMarten

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You give them bread one day, the next they'll be plotting a communist revolution!
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wierd

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No, then they'll storm the Bastille. Honestly... kids these days.
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Jimmy

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As an aside, while I can't provide help specifically since I'm in kangaroo land, I also handle recruiting professional employees as part of my role.

I've consistently found better success taking graduates and training them over two or three years compared to hiring somebody with the skills to hit the ground running. Previous experience often leads to baggage from their previous jobs, issues with their desire to do it the way they're used to doing things, and generally being out of sync with the rest of the workforce. Graduates, on the other hand, are highly motivated to succeed at their first role, still flexible in shaping their real world habits, and not blinded by their preconceptions.

The downsides of course are obvious, from investment of time and resources into creating the right employee, the requirement for acting as a mentor to their role, and the usual silliness that fresh-faced young folk end up inevitably getting involved in during their off-duty hours. Still, if I'm sizing up an employee for a permanent role that can't be filled by promoting someone else, I'll usually take the long term view and make the employee I want instead of rolling the dice and hoping I get what I need.

Of course, if it's only a temporary role, I'd definitely go with someone experienced. If you only need them for a few months, either invest in advertising online or use a professional networking site to discover local talent. Perhaps even head-hunt your competitors if it won't create too much friction.
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