Getting accounting job as a fresh graduate accountant with no experience is one of the most difficult challenges that you must deal with as a university or other higher education study graduate. You will be competing with both graduates and people that are not graduates but with real hands on experience.
The job market has become so competitive that employers have now raised the bar as to whom to employ for the position of accountant thereby making it really challenging for even the brightest to get a breakthrough in the accountancy job market.
The harsh economic condition coupled with other interacting factors that influence the survival of businesses now makes it economic wise to employ people with real world experience at cheaper rate. Sincerely, if you are an employer, would you rather employ a graduate with no experience or a non graduate with tested and verified experience for the position of accounting clerk let alone key accounting position? Well, this is a debatable topic and would be reserved for another day.
Gone are the days when you are guaranteed of a lucrative accounting as soon as you graduate. It now takes more than having a good degree in accountancy and finance before you can get that dream job of your choice. There are some soft skills that you need to excel in this noble field of accounting.
The first thing that you must have is good interview skill sets. Human resource managers and employers now sieve out potentially unsuitable candidates at the interview stage. The next paragraph talks about a typical accounting job interview question.
WHY DO YOU WANT TO WORK AS AN ACCOUNTANT?
Tell us why you want to work as an accountant is a standard interview question that most recruiters ask prospecting accounting graduates looking for accounting job. The reason for asking this question is to find out your motivation for studying accounting in the first place. They also want to find out your reason for choosing to work for the company you applied for. So, be sure to link every answer that you provide to the peculiar situation of the company.
The answers you provide will enable the interviewer determine if you are the right accounting graduate that they are looking for or not. The best way to go about answering this question is to highlight the importance of accounting making sure that you clearly state that those are your motivation. Once you finish explaining the importance of accounting in as your source of motivation, the next reason that you have to give as your motivation for seeking an accountancy job is your passion for the subject.
Another thing that employers are looking for is your ability to face challenges and work under tight schedule. So, it will do you a lot good if you say that you chose accounting career path because of the challenges that face accountants.
Another soft skill that employers are looking for is your ability as a graduate to use accounting software in performing some mundane jobs like budgeting, forecasting, variance analysis, bank reconciliation, contribution analysis, payroll preparation, account preparation. The importance of accounting software in business has now become pervasive to the point that people now look at you as a half baked graduate if you are not able to use accounting software.
I appreciate the fact that most universities do have it as part of their curricular to include practical use of accounting software, you can spend a few more resource to learn how to use any preferred accounting and financial software of your choice. The knowledge you gained from learning to use one will be transferred to the use of another software. Make sure you flaunt your skill in the use of any specialised tool that would guarantee that you deliver high quality result while doing what you are paid for.
WHERE TO FIND YOUR FIRST ACCOUNTING JOB
The best and easiest way to break into the prestigious cycle of accountants is to get experience from charitable work. There are companies that would be willing to employ you on a voluntary basis if you are willing to work for them. The value that the experience you gain from doing work for free for about four weeks will take you a long way as far as getting your first accounting work is concerned.
You can use your network of friends or recruitment agencies to get a voluntary job in accountancy. The company that you approach will firstly speak to an employment lawyer to see if it legal to employ you without pay. The downside of using this method is that you might struggle financially for a while but it is worth the struggle in the long run, besides, companies that are socially responsible will give you some allowances to take care of your bus fare.
By doing all the above that we have suggested in this article, you must have proved to the employer that you posses the qualities of a modern accountant. I am very sure that following the tips provided in this post will land you your first accountancy job as a fresh accounting graduate. Once you have secured the appointment, the next step for you will be registering and taking your profesional accounting exams in order to become a certified chartered accountant.
Do not forget to come back and leave a comment after securing that accounting and finance related work that you have been looking for. Good luck!!