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Finance Job Growth

While the latest employment news is not entirely positive; U.S. companies hired fewer workers than expected in August 2014, service-sector activity offers assurance that the economy remains on track for key areas like finance.

Since July 2013, analysts have predicted finance job growth through 2018. A recent CFA Institute survey shows 40 percent of its members expect job growth in financial services to exceed expectations. Additionally, the US Bureau of Labor Statistics projects jobs in finance will increase at an annual rate of 0.9% through 2022.

For experienced finance professional and new graduates, the employment future looks bright. According to a recent Moody’s study, the following are finance positions expected to experience the greatest growth over the next 24 months:

  • Personal Financial Advisor: Projected growth 32-27%
  • Financial Analysts: Projected growth: 23-16%
  • Financial Services Sales Agents: Projected growth: 11-15%
  • Financial Managers: Projected growth: 9-11%

A report from CareerBuilder indicates the following finance positions experienced the greatest growth in the past three years; which is a strong indicator of future growth:

  • Credit Analyst: Added 4,973 jobs from 2010-2013, up 9%
  • Actuary: Added 1,369 jobs from 2010-2013, up 6%
  • Personal Financial Adviser: Added 12,417 jobs from 2010-2013, up 6%
  • Credit Counselor: Added 1,521 jobs from 2010-2013, up 5%
  • Financial Examiner: Added 1,568 jobs from 2010-2013, up 5%
  • Accountant/Auditor: Added 67,614 jobs from 2010-2013, up 5%

For job candidates looking to make a change, it is important to align your skills with these growth oriented positions. ERP software experience such as SAP, ORACLE, Infor, MS Dynamics, Hyperion, and CPA certification continue to be in high demand.

The next year promises to be an exciting time in finance and accounting - filled with aggressive recruiting and increasing competition for the top candidates. I’m looking forward to working with our candidates and clients to support their growth.

Finance Job Growth

How to Interview Effectively

Stop right there! If you want a successful interview, start by thinking about what to do before the interview. Preparing for your interview is probably the most important step in ensuring you will have an effective interview.

You’ve been invited to come in for a fact-to-face interview. Here are some steps you need to take before you enter their office:

  • Write down the date, time, interview location, and who you will be meeting.
  • Know the title of the person(s) with whom you will be meeting.
  • Print out a map and review directions to the interview location.
    - Take a test drive so you know how much time you’ll need to arrive at the office and get in the door. Be sure to allow enough time to arrive a few minutes early for your scheduled interview.
  • Review the job description and identify the qualities you think are required for the job. Write down situations where you demonstrated these skills.
  • Research the company! Head into the interview with at least general knowledge of the company and what they do! This is important!
    - Check Google, the company website, LinkedIn, and ask other friends or colleagues.

Prepare a list of questions to ask, such as:

  • What are the expectations of this role and what type of metrics am I expected to meet?
  • Why is the position available?
  • How would you describe your company culture?
  • What are the challenges of this position?
  • What training programs or incentive schemes are available?
  • What are the promotional opportunities?
  • Ask about company growth plans - new products/services, etc…
  • What is the staff turnover?

Create a list of 3-5 scenarios/situations you can manipulate to fit some of the most common behavioral questions often asked in an interview.

A large part of any interview is about getting to know you; your personality and whether you’ll fit in with their team. It is important to be open and honest about yourself; you want to work with people you enjoy as well!

Leverage your network. Maybe someone in your network is connected to this company. Referencing a shared connection can sometimes be the key to breaking the ice during an initial conversation.

The interviewer is going to make judgments based on how you look, present yourself, and what you are wearing. A job interview is not the time to try an edgy new outfit. Professional, businesslike, conservative dress is best for an interview.

During your interview:

  • Greet the interviewer by name and shake hands firmly. Don't greet your potential employer with a weak handshake or with a hand-crushing squeeze.
  • Have extra copies of your resume and references.
  • Listen carefully to all questions and answer them succinctly and honestly. Give examples of previous experience relating to the questions.
  • Look the interviewer in the eye while you are talking and as you listen.
  • Your body language often says more than your words. Be aware of what your body language is saying about you. Is it conveying that you are interested, eager, and ready for the job?
  • Explain why you are a good fit. You’re personable, reliable, customer service-oriented, etc. You’ll know attributes to highlight because you came to the interview prepared!
  • Never speak negatively of past employers.
  • Close the interview by asking for the job: Express your interest, recap a key point from the interview, and ask when you might hear back regarding a placement decision.
  • Thank them in person for taking the time to meet with you!

Be sure to follow the interview with a written thank you note to those who took their time to interview you for the job.

I guarantee that the time you spend preparing for your interview will be time well spent!

How to Interview Effectively

Jobs After Public Accounting

It is no secret that public accounting can be demanding. Long hours, intense pressure during busy season and frequent travel are all part of the job. While some accountants thrive in this environment, others face burn-out after only a few years.

In the end, a very low percentage of those who start in public actually stay to make Partner. The good news is that public accounting is a fantastic training ground, and experienced accountants are highly sought after and well compensated.

If or when you are thinking of moving out of public accounting and into industry, there are a several avenues open to you. Here are a few positions to consider:

  • Internal Audit
    The scope of internal auditing is broad and may involve the efficiency of operations, IT controls, the reliability of financial reporting, deterring and detecting fraud, and compliance with laws and regulations. Its focus on bringing a systematic, disciplined approach to evaluate and improve the effectiveness of risk management, control, and governance processes make this a great career consideration for public accountants.

    Corporate Accounting
    Depending upon your experience, public accountants can help consolidate information for financial reporting in senior level reporting roles. You can also be assigned to a product line or business unit as a Financial Analyst where you will help management set up profit objectives, analyze current unit results, and anticipate future financial performance. Public accountants who join a corporate team can also go in as general accountants and typically do so at a senior level or above based on their total years of experience in public accounting. In this role you are responsible for producing all of the financial records a corporation uses to track its progress internally and to comply with government regulations. You will also track the corporate budget, cash flow, and invoicing.

    Finance professionals work with business teams to prepare financial plans, make forecasts, and compare actual financial results to forecasts. Responsibilities include everything from analyzing new business opportunities to restructuring a business or developing a capital spending program. The primary objectives are to find better ways of using company assets, reducing costs, and researching better methods of forecasting. All of these duties are a great match for public accounting skills.

Every industry from manufacturing and entertainment to healthcare and transportation needs accounting talent. Each day controllers, CFOs, financial managers, and other financial professionals in tax and internal audit contribute to financial strategies - playing a role in their employer’s long-term success. If you are looking for a chance to focus on only one “client” and use your knowledge and skills to help an organization thrive, then the change to a private industry accounting position might be right for you.

Jobs After Public Accounting

Make the Right First Impression

Congratulations! You’ve got the job! Now it’s time for the real work to start. You have the skills and the background, so start your path to success with a great first impression at your new company. It may sound trite, but those first impressions will be lasting impressions, and getting off on the wrong foot can take months to correct. Keys to a great first impression aren’t difficult, but they are important!

  1. Arrive on time! Have you ever heard the famous quote, “early is on time, on time is late, and late is unacceptable!” – Never does this apply more than your first day on the job. A punctual arrival shows you are organized, energized, and ready to work. Nothing makes people think you don't value their time more than making them wait! On the flip side, at the end of the day - don’t be the first one out the door. As time goes by you'll learn the habits of your new coworkers and the general office hours of the company and your department.
  2. Dress professionally. The first day at work is not the time to try that new trendy hair color or your edgy outfit. Error on the side of conservative dress at the start of your new job. As you become more comfortable in your position, and with the company culture, you'll know if you can relax your dress code or be more creative with your attire choices.
  3. Show off your friendly smile! Say hello and smile at everyone you meet. It's important to appear open to conversation and eager to tackle that new assignment. A positive attitude is about the most important first impression you can make!
  4. Don't make this personal. Your first few days on the job are not the times to let your new coworkers know that you are fighting with your spouse or going through a messy split with your roommate. Leave your personal baggage outside the office door and dig-in to the new tasks at hand. Clear your mind of personal clutter so you can prove to your managers that they made the right decision by hiring you.
  5. Please and thank you. It's your first day; ask for help. You will need guidance to get on track with new computer systems and job expectations. Be sure to thank those who lend a hand and take their time to get you up-to-speed. A thank you with a smile goes a long way in making a lasting impression.
  6. No need to be discouraged. Everyone was the new guy once.
Make the Right First Impression

National Staffing Employee Week

This week, September 15 – 21, 2014, is National Staffing Employee Week. Take a moment to thank your temporary and contract workers! Every week, U.S. staffing companies employ nearly 3 million temporary and contract workers in jobs and at companies of every size and industry. Often, being a contract employee is a career choice; offering work-life balance and highly competitive wages.

I encourage employers across the country to celebrate National Staffing Employee Week. Created by the American Staffing Association, this special week recognizes the hard working people employed by staffing firms across the nation. A simple “thank you” for the projects your temporary employee has tackled, to a celebration lunch – it’s important to let your temporary and contract employees know they are appreciated!

SNI Companies is proud of our amazing temporary and contract employees! We appreciate your hard work and dedication, and enjoy connecting you with the right positions at remarkable companies’ everyday.

Take a moment to honor the contributions of the stars of America’s workforce: temporary and contract employees.

National Staffing Employee Week