Why Employee Recognition Matters

Every employee enjoys being recognized for their contributions. When employees feel appreciated for their hard work, they remain engaged in their tasks, continue producing at top levels, and invest more time in moving the company forward. Here are six reasons why employee recognition matters.

  • Positive Work Environment

Employees who believe their ideas and efforts are appreciated feel happier about coming to work and contributing to the organization. As a result, employees are more fully engaged in their work, better collaborate on projects, and increase the cohesiveness of company culture. 

  • Reinforced Behaviors

Leaders can point out the actions, approaches, and accomplishments that most benefit the company so employees know which behaviors to repeat and which to modify. Therefore, employee recognition is a powerful form of constructive feedback.

  • Personal Connections

When leaders and co-workers acknowledge an employee’s contributions to the company, the employee feels valued, appreciated, and respected. As a result, the employee builds rapport with leaders and co-workers. Building rapport helps create stronger work relationships. Because of those relationships, the employee becomes more involved in the organization and wants to continue helping the company move forward.

  • Greater Work Contributions

Employees work hard on cultivating their skills and experience to add more value to the company. As a result, recognition from leaders and co-workers shows appreciation and respect for employees’ efforts. Employees then feel motivated to work harder and provide even greater value to the organization.

  • Increased Employee Retention

The more an employee feels appreciated for their contributions, the more fulfilled they feel in their job. Employees stay more engaged in their work and remain loyal to the company. The longer an employee is retained, the less the company spends on hiring, training, and retention costs.

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For assistance with securing top industry professionals, contact WinCorp Solutions today.

Questions to Ask Accounting Job Applicants

When interviewing accounting candidates, are you asking the right questions? Candidates’ answers can reveal insight into their background and uncover their hard and soft skills to help determine which candidate is the best fit for the role. Here are five questions hiring managers should be asking accounting job applicants:

  • What Are Three Top Skills Every Accountant Needs?

This question determines what a candidate believes their three best attributes are. Candidates’ answers should include a mix of hard and soft skills, such as understanding big data concepts and displaying strong communication skills. Candidates should also provide examples of how they developed and used these skills in previous positions.

  • How Do You Remain Updated on Accounting Legislation, Rules and Policies?

This question tests a candidate’s knowledge of the industry and critical thinking skills. Although no candidate can be completely updated on every new development, the top candidate will describe the methods they use to remain as current as possible with major industry news. For example, a candidate may actively read accounting magazines, attend seminars or conferences, or participate in professional organizations such as the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA). Also, note whether a candidate provides a specific example of a recent change to accounting standards, especially as it relates to the position, to determine the authenticity of the candidate’s answer.

  • What Criteria Do You Use to Evaluate the Reliability of Financial Information You Are Given?

This question tests a candidate’s relevant skills. Candidates should mention generally accepted standards for evaluating the reliability of data, such as standards offered by the Financial Accounting Standards Board (FASB). Look for terms such as “neutrality,” “verifiability” and “materiality” and how candidates describe how those terms work. For example, “Neutrality is choosing accounting alternatives that are bias-free.”

  • Which Enterprise Resource Planning System Have You Used?

This question determines a candidate’s relevant skills. The top candidate should describe the brand or system they used and how it specifically benefitted the company. For example, the ERP system may have helped produce the annual financial statements 30 days sooner than before. Keep in mind that some companies are switching to cloud technology rather than using an ERP system, meaning a candidate may need additional training. Also, candidates with experience working for smaller companies may have used a more customized or hybrid ERP solution.

  • How Do You Handle Urgent Accounting Deadlines?

This question determines whether a candidate can effectively organize their work to ensure everything is completed on time. For example, a candidate may record all deadlines on a calendar, prioritize projects according to importance and how much time they may take, and complete the most important and less time-consuming projects first. If multiple projects have the same deadline, the candidate may come in early, work through lunch and/or stay late to complete their work. Also, the candidate may mention that they avoid answering phone calls or talking with colleagues unrelated to the project. In addition, the candidate may ask for help from their colleagues or manager or request more time if the deadline cannot be met.

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These are five questions to ask accounting job candidates. For help with securing top accounting professionals, contact WinCorp Solutions today.

Four Tips for Advancing Your Accounting Career

Moving forward in your accounting career involves careful planning. By gaining the necessary skills and experience, you set yourself up for success in your field. Follow these four tips for advancing your accounting career.

  • Earn Additional Qualifications

If you are just starting out, you may want to earn the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) qualification. This will advance your understanding of financial performance and may help you earn promotions. If you would like to move into management positions, you can complete the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) qualification. In addition, you can earn advanced degrees such as a Master of Science in Accounting. This degree will help you prepare for the certified public accountant (CPA) exam, leading to another qualification that can help you move forward. Furthermore, becoming a CPA prepares you for specialized qualifications such as a Certified Management Accountant (CMA), Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) or Certified Internal Auditor (CIA).

  • Enhance Your Soft Skills

Strengthen your communication skills by joining a local Toastmasters club. Improve your leadership skills by participating in related workshops and seminars. In addition, increase your collaboration skills by joining a sports team. Because your ability to understand, relate to, and serve clients is a vital aspect of working as an accountant, developing your soft skills helps you perform at a higher level and shows you are the best candidate for a promotion.

  • Find a Mentor

A mentor can provide you with inside information about your company and/or the accounting industry to help you be more productive in less time. A mentor can also help you create and achieve long-term career goals so you progress professionally over time. Furthermore, a mentor can connect you with contacts and opportunities that you may not have found otherwise.

  • Network

Daily connecting with new professionals and cultivating relationships increases your influence in and out of the accounting field. You increase your chances of finding new ways to advance your career. Because the majority of desirable jobs are filled by word-of-mouth rather than advertising, you may be able to interview for roles you would not have had access to otherwise. Therefore, you need to participate in accounting events such as seminars, conferences and professional association meetings.

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Attracting the Top Accounting Talent to Your Business

Hiring top accounting talent is a necessary part of growing a business. With the high costs involved in recruiting, it’s imperative the right professionals are in place throughout an organization. Here are four ways a company can attract top accounting talent.

  • Network

Networking introduces top accountants to the roles they desire. For example, companies can utilize LinkedIn to search for accountants in the company’s geographic area, find candidates who are already connected to the organization, and ask to be connected with those candidates. Using warm introductions increases the potential for successful results. Also, if managers attended college locally, they can join alumni associations and post in their online message boards and social media groups when positions become available. Managers can contact accountants who left the company on good terms and may want to come back. Those accountants would be more productive when rejoining the company than a new hire without previous experience. Furthermore, managers can host career fairs at local college campuses and open houses at high schools to promote the accounting industry and positions available within the company.

  • Offer Internships

Internship programs provide a direct pipeline to accounting students. Future accountants can adapt to company culture while applying what they learned in school to gain on-the-job experience. Employers can evaluate interns’ performance to determine who should be offered full-time roles within the organization.

  • Provide Opportunities to Advance

When a company has a track record of developing and promoting top employees, more accountants compete to work for the organization. Top professionals want to continually develop their skills so they can move on to greater opportunities. For example, accountants should be able to work with clients from start to finish to experience the entire accounting process. Also, accountants should work in audit, tax, consulting and other areas to see which field they prefer. In addition, accountants should be given increased responsibility, more input in management decisions and the potential to become partners in a firm. Furthermore, continuing education should be provided so that accountants interact with other professionals, stay current in their field and add to their skill sets.

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Partnering with WinCorp Solutions provides access to our vast pool of top accounting professionals. As experts in our field, we place the most qualified candidates to fill all of a company’s accounting needs. Organizations save time and money by engaging us as active participants in their recruiting process.

For assistance securing accounting professionals for your organization, contact WinCorp Solutions today.

The Financial Sector and Gender Diversity

As a traditionally male-dominated industry, the financial sector is becoming more gender inclusive. More firms are realizing that empowering females to work at all levels increases innovation and moves organizations forward. Here are three ways the financial sector is working to promote gender diversity.

  • Welcoming Females in Finance

Major firms are forming special programs welcoming females into the financial services industry. For example, Merrill Lynch partnered with the Columbia Business School to launch Greater Returns, a program designed to welcome females reentering the workforce. The program provides opportunities for networking and leadership development to help females advance their careers. Goldman Sachs launched Returnship Initiative, similar to an internship but focused on providing intense training, mentoring and work experience for females restarting their careers. In addition, Bank of America launched Career Connections, designed to maintain connections with female alumni from financial organizations who took time off from their careers and want to reenter the workforce. When senior- and mid-level executives plan on taking off for one to three years, the executives help create a return plan and a schedule for contact and communications. Executives may still participate in company events to increase their skill sets. Upon returning to work, executives have a customized onboarding plan and peer coach to assist with the transition.

  • Adding Female Board Members

Increasing numbers of female board members in the finance industry are being reported. Opening up additional positions of influence for females will continue encouraging gender diversity in the field. For example, traditional qualifications for directors, including financial and operational skills and industry experience, are being replaced with qualifications such as technology and cybersecurity skills and international experience. Also, imposing a mandatory retirement age and term limits for directors can facilitate board composition changes. However, because the majority of banking and capital market companies lack a mandatory retirement age for directors, many directors serve long into their 70s. Because the majority of banking and capital market companies lack term limits for directors, the average tenure is eight years.

  • Modifying Company Policies

Many financial organizations are modifying company policies to accommodate the needs of female employees. Many firms are allowing remote work and flexible schedules to empower females to purse high-ranking roles. Also, many benefits are being added to provide support for females’ health and child care needs. Employees are being trained to identify gender discrimination and its effects on the workplace and business outcomes to cultivate a more inclusive work environment. Furthermore, programs are being designed to provide females with access to professional development opportunities to help advance their careers.

For assistance with securing a finance position, contact WinCorp Solutions today.

Why a Diverse Workplace Is Necessary in the Financial Sector

Diversity is an important element of any company. Employing professionals with various backgrounds provides many benefits to an organization. This is especially true in financial services. Here are four reasons a diverse workplace is necessary in the financial sector.

  • Recruit Top Talent

Focusing on diversity is imperative for hiring the most skilled financial professionals. Due to the continually changing economic climate, firms need to hire and retain the most qualified professionals to remain competitive. Hiring for diversity provides access to a wide range of candidates with the hard and soft skills and experience necessary to increase a firm’s market performance.

  • Cultivate Client Relationships

When financial professionals embody the behaviors necessary for serving a diverse population, they can enter into new markets and increase a firm’s revenue. For example, although women control a substantial amount of money worldwide, their demographic remains relatively untapped by the financial services industry. Not only do a significant number of females not have a financial advisor, a substantial number who do have an advisor feel their advisor does not understand their objectives. Therefore, by having a diverse group of financial advisors, a firm is better equipped for communicating with clients to determine their needs and wants and build trust. Clients will take a more active role in asking questions, choosing their investments and planning their financial future when they feel heard and respected.

  • Fill Client Needs

Because the global population is growing in heterogeneity, having a diverse workforce that anticipates market shifts and the needs and wants of clients provides a competitive advantage. Therefore, it’s important that a firm’s representatives reflect the clients they serve. For example, because female executives tend to more clearly understand the financial needs of female business owners and consumers, firms should be hiring more female executives.

  • Innovate

Hiring for diversity promotes innovation. Having professionals with varying backgrounds provides a strong foundation for solving complex problems in more efficient and effective ways. By encouraging the exploration of unconventional ideas and providing the resources to make those ideas viable, financial professionals desire to further contribute to the firm. As a result, new products and services are created, new markets are captured and revenue streams grow.

For assistance finding staff members or securing a role in finance, accounting or audit, contact WinCorp Solutions today.