What College Graduates Are Looking for in Their Job Search

It’s the time of year again for college graduations! This means more accounting and finance candidates are entering the workforce.

You want to take advantage of the knowledge, skills, and ideas this new group of talent has to offer. One of the best ways to attract these job seekers is through your benefits and perks. The more your benefits and perks fill these graduates’ needs, the more likely the graduates are to want to work for you.

Offering any of the following can encourage new college graduates to apply for your jobs.

Diversity and Inclusion

New college graduates prioritize joining a company that celebrates and values the differences among its employees. These companies tend to excel at innovation and problem-solving, making them highly attractive to job seekers.

Make sure your company has employees of different cultures, ethnicities, genders, ages, and backgrounds at all levels. Showcase your employee resource groups (ERGs), cultural holiday celebrations, and other commitments to diversity and inclusion as well.

Work-Life Balance

The ability to control their time is important for recent college graduates. This is especially important for stress relief as these graduates transition from an academic setting into a professional setting.

Ensure you emphasize whether your company offers remote or hybrid work, a flexible schedule, generous paid time off, and mental health services. These benefits and perks help make your organization attractive to job seekers.

Tailored Benefits Package

Recent college graduates seek benefits that fit their current career and personal interests. These benefits may include student loan repayment, paid family or personal leave, or financial planning education.

Consider offering one or more of these benefits. The more you cater to recent graduates’ needs, the more inclined they will be to apply for your jobs.

Professional Development Opportunities

Recent college graduates want to work for an employer that provides opportunities for professional development. Because their first job serves as a stepping stone for their career, these graduates want to know what the future within an organization may hold for them.

Consider offering opportunities for mentorship, skill-building, and leadership development. The more opportunities for professional development new graduates see, the more likely they are to want to work for you.

Attractive Company Culture

New college graduates seek a company culture that blends with their personality and interests. The more these graduates feel that the culture is a good fit, the more likely they are to remain long-term.

Be sure your culture actively supports learning and growth. This should include ongoing employee recognition for their contributions and results.

Need Help Adding to Your Accounting and Finance Team?

New college graduates typically look for diversity and inclusion, work-life balance, tailored benefits, professional development opportunities, and attractive company culture when deciding where they want to work. Offering these increases the number of new graduates who apply to work for your company.

If you need help adding members to your Chicagoland accounting and finance team, turn to the experts at Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. Learn more today.

How Setting Short and Long-Term Goals Can Improve Employee Experience

Employee experience involves how and why things get done at work. This includes every touchpoint your employees have throughout their time working for your company.

A positive work environment, meaningful work, and supportive management contribute to a great employee experience. Trust in leadership and growth opportunities are important as well.

One way to elevate employee experience is through collaborative goal-setting. This provides your employees a say in what they work toward and the targets they aim for.

Collaborative goal setting encompasses the aspects mentioned above that contribute to an attractive employee experience. These are reasons why you should begin setting goals with your employees today.

Discover how collaborative goal-setting helps improve the employee experience.

Goal Setting Impacts Career Success

Helping your employees understand what they are working toward and why it matters impacts job satisfaction.

  • Having clear reasons to reach their goals gives your employees motivation, especially during difficult times.
  • Establishing the steps needed to reach their goals maps out which actions employees should take and when.
  • Setting milestones lets your employees know how successful they are in making progress toward their goals.
  • Celebrating your employees’ successes provides encouragement to continue moving forward.

Achievement of Short- and Long-Term Goals Improves Retention

Employees usually need to achieve a series of short-term goals in order to reach their long-term goals.

  • Short-term goals typically take 6 months to 3 years to attain.
  • Long-term goals typically take 3 to 5 years to achieve.
  • The more short-term goals your employees reach, the more encouraged they are to build on their successes.
  • The more long-term goals your employees reach, the more likely they are to remain with your organization.

Creation of SMART Goals Impacts Accomplishments

Work with your employees to develop specific, measurable, achievable, relevant, time-bound (SMART) goals.

  • Clarify exactly what each employee is working toward, so they know when they successfully reach it.
  • Include numbers or other hard data to measure success.
  • Make sure each goal can be obtained through the steps created and within the given timeframe.
  • Tie each goal to your company goals.
  • Ensure each goal can be achieved in the established time period.
  • Schedule regular check-ins with your employees to determine their progress. Talk about where they are at and where they should be.
  • Give praise when appropriate. Provide guidance to get back on track when necessary.

Looking for Accounting and Finance Talent?

Helping your employees set and attain short- and long-term goals enhances employee experience. When your employees understand the reasoning behind the targets they are working to reach, your employees are more likely to continue making progress toward their objectives. This helps increase engagement and retention rates.

If you are looking for accounting and finance talent, talk with Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. Reach out to find out more today.

5 Skill Tests to Make Sure Your Temp Employees Are the Right Fit

As an accounting and finance manager, there will be times when you need to add temp employees to your team. Your permanent employees may be taking a vacation, on a planned leave, out sick, or unexpectedly no longer part of your company.

Bringing aboard temp employees can help even out the workload for your team. Because these employees come from a staffing agency, you know they are vetted and skilled in their work.

Temp employees require little training to begin producing. However, you may want to conduct skills tests to make sure these employees have what it takes to succeed in a role.

The following are five skills tests you may use to make sure your temp employees fit with an open position.

1. Reading Comprehension

The tasks required of temporary employees typically involve reading comprehension, speed, and other written communication skills.

  • Temp employees need to receive, process, and send accurate information in emails, memos, reports, and other documents.
  • Temp employees must read written instructions to perform specific tasks.
  • Temp employees have to read reports to provide overviews to their managers.

2. Writing

Emails, memos, instructions, and related tasks require strong writing skills.

  • Temp employees may be asked to write an executive summary of a manager’s report.
  • This requires the proper tone, brevity, clarity, and precision.

3. Typing Speed and Accuracy

Because temporary employees often use computers, the employees must have typing skills.

  • You want temp employees who can type at high speeds.
  • Look for temp employees with a low error rate.

4. Word Processing

Temporary office employees need to understand your word processing software.

  • Proper use of the layout and typography features is needed to format documents in line with your company’s style and brand.
  • The temporary employees should be able to create fillable forms and modify templates for communications where the format is fixed, but the information varies, such as a monthly report.

5. Spreadsheets

Many tasks that temporary employees perform involve spreadsheets.

  • Temp employees may need to create spreadsheets to perform important functions.
  • Examples include tracking customer contacts or updating information in an existing spreadsheet, such as adding monthly sales for each sales professional.

Looking for Temporary Accounting & Finance Professionals?

Adding temp employees to your team can help ease the workload. You may want to provide skills tests to make sure the temp employees are able to complete the tasks that are expected of them. Our recruiters have access to hundreds of behavioral and skill tests to predict candidate workplace performance. We also offer interactive training modules for candidates who might need a refresher or to improve their skills.

When you need to temporarily fill accounting and finance roles, turn to Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. Find out more about how we can fill your temporary staffing needs today.

4 Updates You Can Make to Job Descriptions to Gain More Applicants

Your job descriptions provide managers with clear guidelines for hiring, developing, and managing employees. The descriptions also clarify the job expectations for employees and support compensation, performance standards, and development decisions.

Your job descriptions are an important part of your job postings. They let candidates know the duties and responsibilities of a role and the requirements to be successful in the position.

Because your job descriptions serve multiple purposes, they need to be current. The following are four ways to can make sure the information is updated.

Implement these four tips to update your job descriptions to increase your applicant pools.

1. Position Summary

Summarize the main job duties and responsibilities.

  • Make the role attractive to job seekers.
  • Share information about your department.
  • Include who the employee reports to and whether any employees report to them as well.

2. Minimum and Preferred Qualifications

Clarify the qualifications that candidates must have to apply for the role. Include the qualifications that make candidates even more attractive to the hiring manager. Focus on the major end results of the role.

  • The minimum requirements are a shorter list of your objective criteria.
    • Include the minimum education and experience required for success.
  • The preferred qualifications are nice to have if applying for the position. A candidate without the preferred qualifications still may be hired.
    • These qualifications are on a longer list of more subjective criteria that can be discussed in more detail during an interview.
    • Examples of preferred qualifications include soft skills such as communication, attention to detail, and organization.
    • The preferred qualifications set candidates apart from those with the bare minimum qualifications.

3. Duties and Responsibilities

Include the main job functions in order of importance.

  • Be as specific as possible about the job duties and responsibilities.
  • Explain whether the employee makes recommendations to a decision-maker or makes the actual decisions.
  • Use clear action words and specific adjectives for each task. For example, “Create Excel sheets from raw data, including pivot tables and formulas such as if/then. Perform data entry to update, sort, analyze, and summarize in reports for leadership.”

4. Physical Requirements

Clarify whether there are any physical requirements to complete the work. Include whether accommodations can be made for candidates who need them.

Want Help Hiring Accounting and Finance Professionals?

Sharing clear, updated information in your job descriptions lets candidates know what would be expected of them in the role. Clarification of the position summary, minimum and preferred requirements, duties and responsibilities, and physical requirements help candidates decide whether to apply for a position. This narrows down your options when deciding who to contact for an interview.

If you need help with crafting your job descriptions or recruiting candidates that best meet the hiring qualifications, contact the experienced recruiters at Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. Reach out to discuss your needs today.

What Alternate Benefits Can Employers Offer to Combat the Year-End Bonus Request

Many candidates look for employers who provide bonuses at the end of the year. Receiving additional income during the holiday season can be a great reward for employee contributions and results during the year. However, your company may not have the budget right now to provide an end-of-year bonus. As a result, you should add other enticements to encourage candidates to accept your job offers.

Choose among these benefits and perks to increase the acceptance rates of your job offers.

Paid Sick Days

Almost all candidates want paid time off to rest and recuperate when they are ill. The ability to maintain their income encourages them to stay home and avoid spreading germs in the office. This shows you care about the health of your employees. You want them to come to work rested and ready to produce. It also reduces the number of absences due to contamination among sick coworkers.

Flexible Spending Account

Many candidates appreciate the ability to put aside pre-tax money to pay for the year’s out-of-pocket healthcare costs. These may include over-the-counter medications, co-pays for doctor visits, medical devices such as crutches or blood sugar tests, or vision needs like glasses or contacts. Consider contributing $500 to each employee’s flexible spending account (FSA) to make it even more attractive.

Tuition Reimbursement

Recent college graduates are among the candidates looking for help to pay off their student loans. Many candidates finish school in debt and want to begin making loan payments. This can help them put away money to purchase a home, save for retirement, or reach other financial goals.

Employee Development Plans

A significant number of candidates want to work for employers who provide customized education and training opportunities. This offers employees additional ways to more effectively perform their work. The skills and experience gained through employee development plans promote professional growth. This helps the employee achieve their career goals and advance both inside and outside the organization.

Performance Bonuses

The majority of candidates appreciate bonuses based on their performance. This provides motivation to stay engaged and productive. Tying the reward to employee results provides a sense of ownership and control. It also helps reach individual and business goals.

Need Accounting & Finance Employees?

If your budget does not allow for year-end bonuses, consider including other benefits and perks with your job offers. Paid sick days, an FSA, and tuition reimbursement are in high demand. Employee development plans and performance bonuses can entice candidates to accept your job offers as well.

Casey Accounting & Finance Resources can provide you with qualified professionals when you need them. Find out more today.

How to Build Better Relationships Among Your Staff

Encouraging positive relationships among your staff is important. The more comfortable they feel working together, the more confidently they will brainstorm, develop new ideas, and voice their opinions. Open communication develops trust, respect, self-awareness, and inclusion. Developing this foundation helps your staff members more effectively create, innovate, and embrace change. It also promotes employee engagement, productivity, and retention.

Implement these tips to encourage connectivity among your team.

Train on Emotional Intelligence

Talk with your staff about the ability to recognize their own emotions to better understand what they are communicating. The development of this skill helps your staff members become more adept at identifying the emotions of their coworkers. This lets your staff more effectively fill their own needs and the needs of others.

Encourage Mindful Listening

Teach your staff to listen more than they talk. This helps them focus on what is being said and how they can effectively contribute to the conversation. Also, encourage your staff to ask follow-up questions about an issue. They can uncover more information and be better prepared to overcome an obstacle. Plus, remind your staff to show empathy when helping others. Working in a supportive environment helps with problem-solving.

Promote Boundaries

Remind your staff not to let relationship-building interfere with productivity. Although they need to provide enough time to talk with coworkers, they also need to finish their work on time. This means that social interactions should take place during break times.

Ask Questions

Ask your staff members questions about their personal life. Show that you want to learn more about who they are. Share information about your own life as well. Also, find common ground that you can build on. These topics may become the subjects of future conversations. Set an example for your staff members to follow with each other.

Express Appreciation

Let your staff know how much you appreciate their efforts and results. For instance, point out one specific action each staff member took each day to contribute to the organization. Mention what the results were and how the action benefitted the company. This encourages your staff to interact in the same manner with their teammates. Such actions promote a supportive team culture.

Looking for Accounting & Finance Staff?

The stronger the relationships among your staff members, the more collaborative your team is. This increases engagement, productivity, and retention. It also improves job satisfaction, employee morale, and your bottom line.

Casey Accounting & Finance Resources can provide the collaborative professionals you need to fill your team’s needs. Learn more today.

What Candidates Are Looking for When Job Hunting in the New Year

Job seekers are expecting a lot from employers in the coming year. You need to begin preparations now, so you offer what candidates are looking for. If not, they will turn to your competition for jobs instead.

Make sure you offer these key things for job seekers in 2022.

Diversity and Inclusion

Job seekers want to work for companies that prioritize hiring and honoring people with different backgrounds and abilities. It is important that candidates see themselves represented within an organization before they decide to apply. They also want to know that their unique talents and strengths will be celebrated and rewarded. If this is not the case, applicants will look elsewhere to find a workplace that values feeling like an important part of the team.

Transparency

Candidates want to see that management and leadership make business decisions in line with the company mission. Applicants want to understand why a company is hiring for a new role, expanding to a new location, or acquiring another business. Because job seekers desire to work for an organization whose vision and values are similar to theirs, candidates want to understand the direction the company is going in. Transparency builds trust, which contributes to high performance. If applicants feel they are not being given enough information about an organization, they will look elsewhere for employment.

A Top Candidate Experience

Job seekers expect ongoing communication throughout the recruitment process. They need to know that their application was received, where they are at in the process, and what the next steps are. Applicants also appreciate guidelines as to what to expect and when they should hear from you by. Otherwise, your star applicants are likely to apply with companies that provide a better candidate experience.

Opportunities for Advancement

Applicants want the ability to move up within an organization. Because career growth is so important, candidates need to work with managers who support their upward mobility. This includes offering training, coaching, mentoring, stretch assignments, cross-training, and other ways to add to skill sets. If you do not clarify career paths within your organization, job seekers will apply with other companies.

Begin Planning Your Accounting and Finance Staffing Needs

Job seekers place a high value on issues like transparency and diversity, and inclusion. They also want a top candidate experience and opportunities for advancement. Providing what applicants desire can mean the difference between hiring the best talent or settling for less.

When planning for your upcoming accounting and finance staffing needs, be sure to include Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. We have vetted professionals ready to help your business move forward in 2022.

The Importance of Flexible Scheduling and How to Make It Work for Your Business

Companies that offer flexible schedules help accommodate their employees’ different lifestyles. This is becoming increasingly important as a method to attract quality accounting and finance candidates. Because more job seekers want control over their work-life integration, your team should be able to set their own work hours. Fortunately, implementation can be accomplished in a few steps.

Discover some benefits of offering a flexible schedule and how to implement it for your accounting and finance team.

Increased Work-Life Integration

Your team members appreciate being able to schedule their work around their personal lives. They can participate in their children’s school activities, run errands, and take care of household responsibilities while fitting in their work. This helps reduce stress and the potential for burnout.

Enhanced Engagement

Employees who work flexible hours remain engaged longer in their work. They feel highly respected and empowered by their manager. As a result, the staff tends to miss fewer days of work, stay focused longer, and accomplish more each day.

Greater Productivity

The ability to set their work hours lets your team members get more done each day. They can work during the times they are most focused and productive. Your employees’ energy levels and concentration levels should be high, allowing more tasks to get finished.

Stronger Employee Retention

Because employees prefer greater control over their time, they appreciate having a flexible schedule. This increases the likelihood of staying with their employer long-term. The longer you keep your staff, the lower your recruitment, onboarding, and training costs.

Additional Top Talent

Offering a flexible schedule encourages the best job seekers to want to work for you. Because many candidates find this perk even more attractive than salary and benefits, you may be able to save money in these areas. You also could attract more applicants than your competitors who do not offer flexible work hours.

Fill Your Team’s Needs

Ask your staff what their interest and needs are for working flexible hours. Find out whether they can effectively function as a team and what would have to happen to make it work. Make sure that your employees would be available when needed for meetings, client discussions, and other responsibilities.

Create a Policy

Develop written rules about flexible scheduling requirements. This may involve having to be at the office or available by phone during certain times. Include how communication with staff will occur when they are not in the office. Make sure the policy is detailed, clear, and non-discriminatory.

Need Top Accounting & Finance Talent?

Implementing a flexible schedule for your accounting and finance team provides many benefits. Productivity, engagement, and work-life integration should increase. This can attract the best candidates and lead to greater employee retention.

When you need to add the best talent to your team, reach out to Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. We have the candidates you need to fulfill your business goals.

Handling Year-End Closes for a Busy Market

The end of the year is a busy time for your accounting team. This is why it is important you have a year-end closing checklist to organize how the year gets wrapped up. Then, the books should be updated, accurate, and ready to transition to a new year.

Encourage your accounting team to follow these guidelines to handle year-end closes.

Get the Financial Statements

Gather the income statement, cash flow statement, and balance sheet. This shows where the business is at financially and provides the information needed for tax filing. The income statement summarizes the money gained and lost during the year. It lists the revenue, tax expenses, operating expenses, cost of goods sold, depreciation, EBIT/EBITDA, and other financial costs and gains. The cash flow statement lists the company’s incoming and outgoing cash. This includes the timing in which the money came in or went out. The balance sheet lists the organization’s assets, liabilities, and equities and tracks its financial progress. The assets should be equal to the liabilities and equity.

Collect on Overdue Invoices

Contact customers who are late in paying company invoices. Be professional, understanding, and patient. If a customer cannot cover their debt, set up a payment plan with due dates. This shows you care about their business and understand their situation. Document each conversation and what the results were so you can refer to them as needed.

Gather Employee Information

Get together the Form W-4 you have on file for each employee. Use the information to complete each staff member’s Form W-2. They will need this information for tax filing.

Verify Payroll

Ensure your payroll records are accurate and current in your books. This includes raises, year-end bonuses, withheld tax amounts, and benefits.

Account for Inventory

Verify accurate counts of the materials and supplies on hand. This shows how much was spent on inventory during the year and its value. Make sure the inventory totals match the balance sheet. If you find discrepancies, make the proper adjustments.

Organize the Business Receipts

There are many ways you can organize receipts. For instance, you can sort them by the type of expense or in chronological order. You also can use folders and labels to keep the receipts separated or store them digitally on a mobile device.

Reconcile the Bank Accounts

Bank account reconciliation verifies that your accounting records match your bank accounts. The process involves comparing your bank statements to your accounting records. Your statements should match the balance stated in your books. If they do not, you need to uncover the discrepancy. This may involve adjusting a record for the balance to be equal.

Need Help with Your Year-End Close?

Handling year-end accounting procedures is a challenging process. Each step needs to be completed on time to transition into the new year. Having a checklist on hand can ensure everything gets done and the records are accurate and organized.

If you need help with your year-end close, get in touch with Casey Accounting & Finance Resources. We can provide temporary accounting professionals to help you close out the books and get ready for 2022.

Bring Your Staff Together This Holiday Season! 5 Ways to Boost Employee Morale

Bringing together your accounting and finance team during the holidays is a great way to elevate morale. Setting up activities for your staff to participate in helps them interact and get to know each other better. This can increase engagement, collaboration, and productivity both now and in the future.

Choose among these ideas to unite your accounting and finance team and elevate morale this holiday season.

1. Play Holiday Music in the Office

Play your team members’ favorite holiday songs throughout the workday. Music has been shown to enhance productivity and spread positive feelings. Diversify the playlists, artists, and songs to include Christmas, Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, and other religious holidays. Additionally, include lyric-free seasonal songs for a more neutral holiday environment.

2. Encourage Desk Decorations

Let your employees express their holiday cheer by decorating their workspaces. This has been shown to increase motivation, engagement, and productivity. It also elevates energy levels and makes staff happier. Suggest neutral decorations for the rest of the office. This may include dressing up the refrigerator in the office kitchen as a snowman or wrapping an office door like a present. You may want to hang stockings with small gifts for your employees as well.

3. Promote a Wellness Activity

Set up an activity in the office to increase relaxation and reduce stress. This is especially important if your team is working extended hours during the holiday season. For instance, hire an instructor to come in for an hour of meditation or a yoga session. Your staff should return to work refreshed, invigorated, and feeling appreciated. Or, bring in a lunchtime fitness instructor to provide walking tips while your team members walk outside and breathe in the fresh air. They can enjoy a bag lunch before returning to work.

4. Provide Monetary Gifts

Surprise your staff with additional vacation days, a year-end bonus, or another monetary gift. Your team will appreciate the extra time off to unwind with family and friends. They also would enjoy treating themselves to a holiday gift from the company.

5. Offer Additional Flexibility

Because employees tend to be busier than ever during the holidays, allow more flexibility in their work schedule. Your staff may need additional time for shopping, decorating, baking, attending school events, and visiting with family and friends. Loosening up their schedules encourages your employees to participate in the activities that mean the most to them. Letting them fit their work around their personal lives as much as possible shows you care about their happiness and well-being.

Happy Holidays from Casey Accounting & Finance Resources!

Bringing your accounting and finance team together during the holiday season is a great way to build morale. The excitement of celebrations with family and friends and the anticipation of beginning a new year make this the perfect time to build memories.

When you are in need of professionals to add to your team, reach out to us. We look forward to helping you attain your business goals in 2022.