Current trends in the accountancy job market

Hewitson Walker is a professional recruitment consultancy specialising in the placement of finance and accountancy professionals across the UK. Neil Povey, Operations Manager, shares his top tips for candidates.

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Neil has over 12 years’ experience as a recruiter and specialises in senior accountancy across a range of sectors. Neil is currently the recruiting manager for the Northern Home Counties region. His resourceful approach ensures he identifies the very best talent and the majority of his assignments come from referrals and repeat business. 

What are the main trends you’re seeing in the job market at the moment?    

The market is becoming massively candidate driven – good candidates are in high demand, it has never been more important to give an honest and accurate brief when discussing opportunities. Trust and transparency are essential and will win candidates over.

What key skills are currently in demand?    

Recently qualified candidates and candidates who can show stability and progression.

What are your top tips for preparing for an interview?    

I don’t want to give too much away on this subject but one essential ingredient is to prepare the candidate for interview around the soft elements and not to get lost on the technical aspects of a CV or a job description.

How do you shortlist candidates for interview?    

My shortlists are based on the candidates who genuinely want the job and for the right reasons – there is no value in sending a “pretty” CV that may appeal to the recruiting manager if the candidate is not excited about the opportunity. Having the confidence and ability to get the client to buy into this principle is an important factor in the current market.

In your opinion, what makes a candidate stand out?    

Simple – someone who is likeable and who shows commitment to me, generally speaking  (unless under exceptional circumstances)  if a candidate is not prepared to take the time to meet me and only wants to “see a job spec” I will rarely represent them regardless of qualification and quality of CV.

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