Red Flags for Retaining Young Accounting Staff
The CPA profession is currently seeing a gap in succession talent. Many firms face the issue of no succession talent beneath the Partner group to lead the firm moving forward. What is causing this trend to continue? There is no one single answer, but firms with these red flags are more at risk than others who are preparing for the future from a talent retention standpoint.
- Perception of Advancement Opportunities
My position entails speaking with Managing Partners from firms across the country daily. The organizations with aging leadership all have difficulty recruiting and retaining younger staff members. When your talent pool sees an aging leadership team, right, wrong, or indifferent, they tend to associate that with a firm that does not offer the potential to evolve into leadership roles themselves over time.
- Type of Work
The accounting profession will always be compliance based. However, firms need to be embracing the advisory-focused and consulting mindset to attract the best talent. Practices with the “old school” compliance based workload can chase away the talented recruits needed to build your succession leadership pipeline. The next generation of accounting firms will thrive by attracting younger recruits that can win new business and become trusted advisors. They do not want to be seen as the stereotype pencil pusher accountants portrayed in the media.
It is easy to pin everything on Millennials’ work ethics or different work-life balance expectations. Not all young professionals are seeking an office with a ping pong table or a beer fridge. The culture of a firm can make or break your talent retention. Believe it or not, most young professionals are still seeking a work environment where they can be challenged and trusted with meaningful responsibilities. This might not be the case for all young professionals, but this is the case for the ones you want to recruit and keep.
To talk further, please contact Doug Lewis.
Doug is a Director at The Visionary Group & CPA Growth and can be reached at 800.995.9186 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Visionary provides growth services and customized merger and acquisitions for the CPA profession.