Hiring, retention issues could be rife in 2015
January 28, 2015

Many accounting firm owners might think that hiring a staff may be one of the easier elements of running a business. After all, comparatively, they'll have to endure a number of other more challenging struggles, such as keeping the business afloat during off-peak times, investing in technology - and keeping it updated - and even potentially contending with legal issues.

So, the easy part is placing an ad in the local paper, creating a listing on an online job board and asking friends and family if they know any accountants in need of a job, right? 

Wrong. There are so many factors that come into play during the hiring process - how many college graduates are flooding the market, how the economy is performing, whether or not there's enough revenue to actually meet payroll requirements and so on. And then, when employees are on board, administrators need to work hard to keep them.

This is something many experts think is going to be a challenge for Canadian accounting associations in 2015. 

Challenges loom on the horizon
According to a recent report published by the Lannick Group, a retail finance, accounting and IT recruitment organization, bookkeeping firms in Canada are going to have to focus heavily on their staff in 2015 if they want to succeed. 

The finance and accounting sectors are set to see the most significant jumps in salaries overall, the study found. As such, firms are going to have to pay attention to what others in their field are doing to remain attractive to prospective hires.

"As the global economy continues to heal, Canadian finance, accounting and IT employers need robust recruiting and retention strategies to succeed in outperforming the competition in 2015 and beyond," noted Lannick Group President and CEO Peter Lannick in a statement.

What can be done?
In terms of hiring, bookkeeping firm leaders need to do things like offer a competitive salary, present good benefits and cultivate a positive corporate culture. They also need to take advantage of technology - firms can't just market by word of mouth and ads in the newspapers, they need to get with the times and look to the Internet. Everything from popular job boards to social media pages must be exhausted for best results.

Once people are on board, managers need to keep up morale, recognize dedicated work as appropriate and offer reviews in which employees should be given constructive criticism and an opportunity to grow their roles. Retention and initial hiring need to be main goals of accounting firms for the rest of the year and beyond.

Nexus: G-WEBCD2