The real reason why accounting firms can't attract millennial talent

Dan Hood, editor-in-chief of Accounting Today, sat down with Jeff Phillips, CEO of Accountingfly, to discuss one of the biggest issues facing firms today- how to attract new, quality staff members.

Accountingfly is an accounting specific job board and network. It allows job seekers to upload their resume and gives firms the opportunity to streamline their recruiting process. 

As the baby boomer generation begins to retire, many firms are having a difficult time finding qualified talent to fill new roles and are in a staff crunch. 

While it may seem like there are "no good hires", Jeff pointed out key areas that firms may be overlooking during their recruiting process in this video interview

  1. Accountants who are relocating to a new city.
  2. Accountants moving from private to public practices.
  3. International candidates.

The key, Jeff mentions, is to leverage technology to create a strategic way to tap into these three groups. Jeff also mentions that your online presence is crucial in today's market. It needs to demonstrate your practice's culture and values, a requirement of recent college graduates (i.e. millennials).

According to FactTank, Pew Research Center’s real-time platform, Millennials are now the largest generation in the U.S. workforce. Currently at 53 million strong, by 2020 Millennials in the workforce is expected to reach 86 million. This increase will also be affected by the number of new immigrants to the United States who usually fall within this age range. 

And Millennials are notoriously very vocal about their need to work for a company that represents their values and culture. In Forbes' article, What Millennials Want in the Workplace (And Why You Should Give It To Them), 74% of Millennials want flexible work schedules, 88% want a collaborative not competitive environment, and 88% want work-life integration as opposed to work-life balance.

Gone are the days when you can hire a new employee solely based on salary, benefits and random perks.

“Your practice needs to live and breathe like a human being, and connect to your prospective employee on a soulful, heart-centered level.
— Danetha

And while your practice may be a fun, joyful place to work, does it actually demonstrate this in your online presence?

Millennials use social media and websites as a way to gauge if companies truly represent their values, not only for making purchasing decisions but professional decisions as well.

Does your website and social media presence cohesively communicate your commitment to building a culture that will allow your employees to thrive?

If your practice is in the midst of shaking up its culture to better reflect the requests of this new generation, how are you going about making that change? 

Take action now: Send an email to each one of your staff members and ask them to choose three adjectives that best describe the culture of the practice, as they see it. Once you get everyone to respond, schedule a meeting to go over the responses. Is there a general consensus or no? Does your online presence truly reflect the culture of your practice?


About Danetha: Danetha Doe is a millennial thought leader in the accounting industry. Named a "next-generation accountant" and one of the top 40 under 40 accounting professionals, she is an international speaker and leads business development trainings for accounting firms.

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Danetha Doe