Solutions’ Experts in the Industry: Accountancy & Finance

Laura Turner was recently named the overall winner of our Consultant of the Month, so we took the opportunity to hear from the expert herself…

How long have you worked in recruitment? Tell us a bit about your background.

I’ve worked in recruitment since February 2013. Prior to that I worked in Collections, Sales and Customer Service for Barclaycard. I attended Liverpool Hope University from 2008-2011 and gained a 2:2 in English Language with Philosophy and Ethics (BA Hons Degree).

Which industry, or industries, do you focus on?

Accountancy & Finance in both Industry and Practice, with a focus on the ‘transnational’ or ‘part qualified’ markets (permanent staffing).

Are there any changes in legislation that employers or employees should be aware of?

The Agency Workers Regulations (AWR) and Pensions Auto Enrolment were two big changes for the industry, as well as the increase in National Minimum Wage.

Do you have any advice for those looking for work in this industry?

A career in Accountancy & Finance can take some years of study and hard work, so if you’re considering this as a career, it’s best to get started as soon as possible.

I would recommend attending university to complete an Accountancy & Finance degree to gain exemptions from either one of the following ACA, ACCA, or CIMA. Alternatively, you can complete your AAT and continue your studies onto ACA, ACCA, or CIMA as you progress in your career.

If you know that this is the path you’d like to follow, for graduates particularly, it might be a good idea to join a company which is offering Trainee Accounts roles/apprenticeships, which also offers support with your studies whilst also providing practical experience.

What about advice for employers looking for candidates?

It’s important to ensure you are really selling the business to potential candidates, along with the benefits of the role.

In particular, I would recommend putting an emphasis on study support and career progression within the organisation. In my experience, I have found that Accountancy & Finance candidates are really enthusiastic to continue their studies or career progression within this discipline, and ultimately become Chartered. Therefore if they can find a company who are willing to fund this, as well as gaining practical experience, this is a big selling point!

Make sure you are offering a competitive package including salary and holidays; the current market seems to be saturated with roles but not as many strong candidates (at present!). In order to “snap them up” you must be competitive.

I believe clients should also have a sense of urgency when recruiting – dragging your feet may result in missing out on a great candidate. If you like them, offer them the role!

It’s so important to make sure you are advertising roles on the right platforms. For example, job boards are not always the best place to find new talent, there are also option on social media – such as LinkedIn, Facebook and Twitter!

How can Solutions Recruitment support these employers?

We offer a consultative approach and assist throughout the recruitment process from start to finish.

If we are approached to assist with recruitment, we always aim to have a meeting to ensure we fully understand the company, the role, the dynamics of the team and more.

‘Team fit’ is extremely important, and the only way to gauge this is to meet the company and team for ourselves! This helps us to truly understand the business and, following candidate meetings and vetting, send a small amount of relevant CVs – which, in turn, will simplify and speed up the process for the client.