As a CPA, you don’t have a lot of spare time. At work, there’s pressure to get in as many billable hours as possible. Then add in family and home responsibilities and it seems as if there’s never time to look for your next career move. In the midst of a busy life, we wanted to give you a few quick and easy things you can do to put yourself in a position to find your next dream job, even if you aren’t looking to make a change today. And while these may seem obvious, you’d be surprised by how many people don’t actually take the time to do them.
1. Trim your Resume
You know you’ve got your resume somewhere saved on your computer and on a job board or two, and you’d say it’s probably up to date… for the most part. The next question is, how long is it? If it is more than a page (or two pages, tops), trim it down. Remember, a resume is a snapshot of your work experience. Its role is to land you an interview, not get you the offer. So if it is chronological, make sure you hit the highlights of each position. In fact, depending on your career path, a functional resume might be better.
2. Update LinkedIn
But Isn’t LinkedIn just a glorified resume? Perhaps, but for many hiring professionals, the #1 social platform for business networking is way more than that. Remember, your resume is a one-page teaser. Your LinkedIn profile gives you room to expand on your experience and capabilities, but more importantly, it allows you to write a bio or a statement that allows you to speak to who you are and what’s unique about you. This is where you tell the world how you bring value to your employer. This is especially important as LinkedIn is highly ranked on Google, so if someone Googles your name, your LinkedIn profile will appear near the top.
When was the last time you got some great, professional photographs taken? Sure, we’ve heard the new trend of the casual headshot and, in some circumstances, snapshots or selfies would make sense. But remember, one of the first things a partner at a potential firm is going to look at is one of your social media profiles such as LinkedIn. Does your headshot truly reflect who you are and let the firm know you fit their culture?
4. Connect with Quality Recruiters
LinkedIn is also frequented by CPA headhunters like those at Valintryfinancial so you want to make sure you stand out. In fact, it’s always a good idea to find some quality recruiters and headhunters and connect with them on LinkedIn. The Valintryfinancial staff is always on the lookout for quality candidates to introduce to our nationwide network of clients.
5. Develop and Demonstrate Skills for your Next Step
Whether you want to progress in your career path at your current organization or in a different firm, make sure you are focused on learning and demonstrating the skills needed for that next position now. As those capabilities grow, don’t just list them on your resume, but also make sure you are able to give specific examples of how you currently use them during your interviews.
For example, say you are looking to make partner within the next 5-10 years. A key trait for partners is the ability to bring in new business. Now is the time to take in interest in building that skill so help drive business development where you are. From a small transaction to simply introducing a large potential client to your firm, keep track of the business you help close. It looks great on a resume.
6. Don’t Appear Jumpy
You’ll hear us repeat this over and over in our blog posts and videos… Longevity is king when you are climbing the CPA ranks. Partners aren’t interested in hiring someone that has a history of leaving every two years. They like and want a solid commitment. If you’ve made a few company changes in the recent past, make sure you have a reasonable answer to why before you go into the interview.
7. Find a Candidate-Focused Placement Firm
Candidate-focused firms are just that: placement firms who concentrate on the candidate’s needs first. These firms, like Valintryfinancial, know that the best results come from focusing on finding a quality candidate first, then presenting that candidate to firms that make a good fit…not just where there an open job. Our client contracts are focused on finding good people not filling open jobs. Because we consistently focus on quality candidates, we’ve built a strong reputation with our 400+ client firms nationwide. This ensures our ability to get a candidate’s resume in front of the decision-maker, every time… whether the job market is good or bad. It’s a win-win for everyone!
With all 7 of these ideas complete, you’re probably wondering what other efforts you could be making. Did we mention finding a good recruiter? For more information on how the National Placement executives at VALiNTRYfinancial can assist you in your job search or simply give more specific guidance to your career path, check out our infographic on our unique recruiting methodology or contact us directly!