Tuesday, 23 May 2017

Planning Your Accountancy Career in Public Practice......Keeping a Step Ahead..

Taking control of your career progression should not be taken lightly and is something you should plan for. There are always going to be exceptions to this rule when control is taken out of your hands, the most obvious one being unexpected redundancy which for most is not part of their plan.

You should take steps to know which direction you are going in through appraisals with your current employer, or if you need to look externally, establish a firm relationship with a Recruitment Consultant with a particular knowledge and expertise of your market and career options.

During the recession, as you would expect, recruitment was not at the top of the list for many Firms of Accountants but things have now changed where the demand for experienced candidates is high but the pool of available candidates is small. 

The problem that active or passive job seekers now face is the pressure of deciding which opportunity is right for them without it being a knee jerk reaction to for example either having passed your exams, or not being happy with the latest salary review. While at the same time you are potentially caught off guard by an unsolicited headhunt call from somebody who found your details on LinkedIn and out of the blue they claim to have the "ideal" job for you, without really having any idea as to who you are and what would be best for your career.  

The best plan for your career is to plan for it.

This is where your choice of recruitment consultant is vital in providing the advice and market knowledge you need to make an informed plan.  At this point it would be useful for our consultants at Wavelength to meet with you, to form that relationship and allow us to be a step ahead of the market by proactively working on your behalf so we can then make you aware of the type of opportunity that would interest you. 

The way we work at Wavelength will ensure your details are kept confidential until such time that you agree to be put forward for a specific role.  If you sign up to the way we work there is no need for you to then approach other recruitment agencies.  Where possible and if not too late we do ask candidates to consider dealing with Wavelength exclusively rather than getting other agencies involved, as this can sometimes compromise your own position when agencies get into a CV race rather than listening to what you are actually looking for.

At Wavelength  we are dealing with a number of  Career Opportunities
but we don't just fill vacancies. One of our strong points over the years has been the ability to source the right opportunity for candidates  rather than shoehorn them into one we are having difficulty filling.The other side to that equation is that our clients are getting the right candidates for their roles; so everybody is happy.

So......... if you are somebody with experience gained from working within Public Practice and interested in taking steps to plan for your career progression within Practice, we are here to help. We will advise, counsel and help you take the next progressive step in your career. 

We look forward to hearing from you.

Monday, 22 May 2017



OK you have completed your ACA or ACCA training and qualified and trained in Public Practice; what do you do now? There are a number of options available in terms of the career path you can now take but you may also find that the options available will depend on your experience gained through training.

Typical career paths include:
  • Audit and Assurance 
  • General Practice
  • Corporate Finance
  • Business Advisory
  • Tax
  • Insolvency / Business Recovery
  • Forensics
 In this edition we will focus on Audit and Assurance.

Audit and Assurance

Experience gained within Audit and Assurance will have provided exposure to dealing with statutory and non-statutory audits for companies ranging from the small to the very large multinational. This experience will provide an excellent foundation for future career progression either by remaining focused on an Audit career within a firm of Accountants or to use that experience and move into another specialist field.

If you remain within Audit after qualification this can provide clear progression with a possible route to Partnership. This is a popular choice for Newly Qualifieds who remain with their Training firm and may have already been fast tracked in their career.

For those who have trained with smaller firms there is a demand from the larger firms provided the audit experience gained is significant either in terms of client size or frequency of audit assignments. Moving to a much larger firm will provide exposure to a much larger and in some cases more complex client base and develop your reporting and technical ability. 

A career in Audit and Assurance will develop your skills in key areas and provide a platform for the future. You will develop your client and staff management skills as well as expertise which is specific to the Industry sectors you have been exposed to.  

With audit threshold changes in recent years this has reduced the number of audits required by companies which has had a knock on effect on the audit exposure given to trainees by firms of accountants. For anyone who finds themselves in this position the other career options bullet pointed at the top of this article are still available but if you are interested in securing a new role in audit after qualifying there are plenty of opportunities in the market. 

Visit our website to see a range of Public Practice career opportunties all providing audit exposure; for some examples click the links below. They vary from newly qualified roles to opportunities requiring more experience:

Top 10 Audit Senior  - Peterborough c£32K - £38K

Top 10 Audit Senior - Northampton c£34K - £36K

Top 10 Audit Manager  - Milton Keynesc£55K - £60K

ACA / ACCA Qualified Manager - Milton Keynes c£45K - £50K

Audit and Accounts Senior - Kettering c£30K - £38K

Newly Qualified Audit Senior - Milton Keynes c£35K - £38K

If any of the above opportunities or others on our website at www.waverecruit.com are of interest, please contact us at Wavelength to discuss further or contact us if you simply want some career advice; we will be pleased to help.  

The Public Practice Specialist


Wednesday, 17 May 2017


When the recession kicked in the uncertainty that was created meant a lot of accountancy firms either put their succession plans on hold or the owners worried they wouldn't get a chance to have one if the business went under.

A number of years further on and  there are still a number of established accountancy firms across the region who do not have anybody coming through to enable the owners to exit over the next 5 - 10 years. This has been caused by a reluctance to recruit and train during the recession and a reluctance of experienced professionals in a managerial position to move on which in turn restricted the development of qualified staff coming through and so the cycle went on. We were in an era of postponed promotions, expansions, retirements etc.

For the ambitious aspiring qualified accountant there are now opportunities to join firms as part of firms' succession plans and secure a financially and career rewarding opportunity. This is never something to rush into on either side and as much as the economic circumstances impact on the decision making, it is still important to remember the timescales you may have to work to, especially if the plan is working towards a retirement or a fixed date of exit. 

When joining a firm you need to give yourself time to work alongside the exiting partner  so you gain the respect and understanding of the clients you are going to be taking over. You will need a couple of years to bed in, build relationships with clients and staff alike; you may also need business development experience or need to build a portfolio and this will take time. 

There are different ways of buying into a firm and the expectations of the exiting partners will vary from firm to firm but it is likely you will need the time to buy in or raise funds, so with all this in mind you would really need to be planning for this type of opportunity now if you expect to become a partner in the next 3-5 years.

At Wavelength we've had many years experience in the accountancy recruitment market recruiting for practices large and small at all levels and have introduced many candidates looking for prospects for progression from aspiring managers through to partners with fee following, even during the toughest recession.  

As the market improves competition for these roles will increase and you need to be made aware when such an opportunity presents itself to the market and is relevant to your skills set and aspirations. Roles will vary and may be specialist e.g. in Audit or Tax or may be more General, it is during these times you need a consultancy you can trust to be technically aware, skilled at recruitment, have strong market knowledge and be honest and unbiased.

Examples of current roles we are recruiting for at Partnership level include:

ACA qualified with client following

Partnership Prospects ACA/ACCA Qualified Manager

ACA/ACCA Qualified Senior/Manager with a small firm

For other opportunities at all levels follow this link http://www.waverecruit.com/jobs.asp

At Wavelength we don't just fill vacancies we will find the right opportunity  for you and let you know when it surfaces.

So start the search at the earliest opportunity and choose your recruitment agent wisely to identify what will be a career enhancing appointment for you

Monday, 15 May 2017

In times of uncertainty changing your job can still be achieved and here's how.

In times of uncertainty as we are currently with Brexit, North Korea, who is going to win the General Election and what will that mean to the economy and are we actually going to have a Summer this year, it can be perceived it is the wrong time to change jobs. This can be true in some circumstances but if carefully managed a career change can be achieved at any time.  The key is to ensure the best match is made and all the necessary research is completed before committing to the move.

One of the most important decisions will be how you are going to go about it. Will you go it alone, pitching your CV onto a series of public job boards, a quick update of your linkedin profile and then hope for the best? Or do you enlist the expertise of a recruitment consultant?(That's where we come in).

“Bit old fashioned? Surely it’s all about technology/social media/online presence...?” Well no, it most definitely isn’t.  Not if you choose well.  Just like the recent trend for retro, vintage niche, bespoke products, their appeal is not just aesthetic, it’s about discretion, individuality, specialist knowledge, attention to detail, exceptional service levels, personal tailored offerings.

That, right there, is exactly what the right recruitment consultant should be providing. (Again...which is where we come in).   
Choose well and your consultant with help you to secure the perfect role without broadcasting your personal details across the market, they will help you to identify exactly what you need and help you to secure the role that matches with your short and long term aspirations.  They will know which firms match your personality, which firms you will work best with and weed out those that don’t.

So if you’re considering a move, keep your approach exclusive and discerning, take your time and enlist an expert and the climate of uncertainty should only be the smallest part of the decision making process.
At Wavelength we specialise in providing accountancy staff to Professional firms of Accountants, from trainee to direct Partner entry. As Public Practice recruitment specialists we recruit for any size of firm, from the sole trader and small partnership to the middle and top tier firms. We match the candidate to the client and the client to the candidate. 
At Wavelength your time will not be wasted!! www.waverecruit.com

Wednesday, 10 May 2017

The hidden pitfalls of using a job board

Despite what certain online and TV adverts suggest; finding the perfect job is not as simple as hitting the job boards.

Now that's clearly a controversial statement and I'm sure to be hit with the "yes you would say that wouldn't you" from sceptical readers but bear with me.  It's something that we have  witnessed for some time now and feel job hunters should have a greater awareness of the impact the route they choose to find a new job can have on their long term prospects.

The problem that can happen when using job boards is ultimately a lack of control if you don't do it right, which is one of the worst things that can happen when you are changing role and here's why.
1. A Credibility Killer
Many candidates nowadays seem to start the thought process of changing jobs by hitting the job boards and "seeing what's out there".  Now as a general exercise there's nothing wrong with this, however it's all too easy to simply click a button and bam! you've applied for a job that you'd give no more than a few seconds thought to.  Would you do that if you had to telephone them or apply in writing?
The person receiving your speculative application will assume you have read about the role you have applied for, researched it and decided to apply because you have a clear idea as to what you are looking for and have made a calculated decision to apply.  If you haven't this will become apparent either from your lack of skills actually matching the requirements of the role or if you do get to interview you may come across as indecisive, lacking commerciality and unprofessional.  The interviewer wants you to have thought this through and actually be interested in their company and the opportunity they are recruiting for.
The reason this effects your long term career? Well certainly in the world of accountancy where we specialise, it is wise to remember it is a VERY small world employers and agencies will remember you. Your application is your first impression.
2. The Gold Rush
The moment you decide to apply for a role on a job board you will be asked/told you have to upload your CV, set up an account, log all your details, provide inside leg measurements etc. Great that makes things easier doesn't it.?  Kind of yes, however what you are actually consenting to is for your CV and personal data being SOLD to anyone who subscribes to the CV download service, resulting in all your personal data being distributed to 100's of recruitment agencies and employers (including your own if they are a subscriber).
3. Losing the Race
About an hour or so later you should start receiving the first of many many phone calls from agencies contacting you or simply sending your CV out without consultation or your permission to any of their clients you may be vaguely suited to.  At this point you have lost control and you are no longer able to have a discreet, discerning search for your ideal role.
You have now lost control of the  the search for the job you want, your time will be absorbed fielding calls and emails from competing agents "selling you their jobs".
4. The Interview Marathon
With agencies doing what they do, you will most likely be receiving calls along the lines of "I have a client that would like to meet you!" "How exciting" you think, "I have an interview!" "but hang on how did they know what I am looking for and that my personality and career aspirations are exactly what the employer wants?!  That's incredible as we havent even spoken before!"  Unless you really put the brakes on firmly here this is the point you start attending very frustrating and stressful interviews that given the right amount of advice and consultation you probably would have chosen to reject.
Job boards of course have their place, they help to demonstrate available roles, provide industry benchmarks, salaries etc.  So use them to research and narrow down what you think you are looking for but keep your CV on your hard drive and your finger well away from the apply now button!  
When you see a role you think you are interested in do some more research and then contact the employer in an email or telephone call, send your CV direct when you are ready and only in relation to a specific role.  If it is a recruitment agency, again contact them directly and send your CV only if they have answered all your questions and they appear to be the best agency to source the type of role you are looking for and provide you with professional, credible advice to enable them to find the role you want.
Keep your valuable data to yourself until you are ready to share it.
In doing so you stand a much better chance of finding the perfect role and minimise the heartache finding it!

Tuesday, 9 May 2017

Is Social Media Affecting Your Employment Chances??

Give your social media profile some thought - Prospective Employers Are!!

Okay, nobody enjoys looking at a boring social media profile, so how can you maintain the status quo whilst still staying in the market for some attractive job roles? Simple, all you need to do is take a closer look at those privacy settings and start putting them into action. You can easily tweak them so that only your Facebook friends can see your updates and that will help a lot. 

But whilst you are at it, why don’t you go through your profile and get rid of those dodgy updates as well? Swearing, anything sexual and of course the booze related photos aren’t really that important are they? 

You could always open up a new account with an alias if you absolutely must be seen as the party animal, but do it sooner rather than later. 

From our own experience as a Public Practice Accountancy recruitment agency, we know that our own clients will look at social media profiles and actually include this as a vital part of their own selection process.

You should also delete any inactive social media accounts because your prospective employers could also find these and who knows what you thought was cool two or three years ago?

So think about your professional future, take care of your social media accounts and you could soon land that dream job you always wanted whilst keeping your "social" reputation intact!!

Monday, 31 October 2016

w/c 31/10/16 Latest Jobs




Business Services Accountant

   NORTHAMPTON | c£25K - £28K
Opportunity for an AAT qualified or qualified by experience candidate with a Public Practice background dealing with the year end and management accounting requirements for owner managed businesses.  We are looking for an Outsourcing Accountant to provide general practitioner accountancy services for companies, partnerships and sole traders... Read more
REFERENCE: 1073860235

Bookkeeper / Accounts Assistant

  MILTON KEYNES | c£24K - £26K
We are recruiting for a bookkeeper to join an established firm to deal with the bookkeeping and VAT requirements for a variety of owner managed businesses. The role is mixed and will involve both working in the office and visiting clients.  Using a variety of traditional and cloud based software including Sage, QuickBooks and Xero..... Read more
REFERENCE: -1623291269

Accounts Senior

NORTHANTS | c£30K - £38K
We are recruiting for an experienced Accounts Senior to join an established independent Chartered Accountancy practice with a reputation for providing a high quality service. You will be dealing with the accounting and business tax requirements for clients...Read more
REFERENCE: -668313259

Audit Senior - Cloud Sofware

BEDFORD | c£22K - £28K
We are recruiting for an AAT qualified or ACCA studier to join a small independent firm which specialises in providing cloud accounting services to a portfolio of SMEs.
This is an opportunity to join a small but growing business and to benefit long term by being given the chance to acquire shares in the firm as the business develops...
Read more
REFERENCE: -1021797232


NORTHANTS | c£45K - £60K
As the firm continues to grow there is now an opportunity for an experienced manager to join and take control of running the office on a daily basis.  In summary the role will revolve around the control and review of work in the office re the accounting requirements for sole traders, partnerships and limited companies.... Read more.
REFERENCE: -198527358


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