With recruiting around the corner, it can be easy to get overwhelmed. Everybody here went through the recruiting process and we have put together a list of our top 7 tips for students participating in recruitment to kick-start your career in public accounting.
1. Do your homework: Nobody you will meet during recruitment expects you to be an expert on their firm or even on accounting in general. What they do expect is for you to ask educated questions and be knowledgeable about the field you are going into. Make sure you go into recruiting events knowing about each firm’s specialties and structure. Also make sure you know how the CPA process works, that way you can focus on the opportunities and working-culture of each firm.
2. Practice an elevator pitch: These firms meet with so many equally-qualified students, it may be hard to stick out from the crowd. If you had one minute to sell yourself what would you say? What differentiates you from another candidate? Why are you going into accounting? Do not save this information for the interview. Instead, use these personable moments to make a lasting impression.
3. Don’t forget to make business cards: Be sure to exchange business cards with key information such as your name, school and expected graduation date. You can even include a photograph and a link to your LinkedIn profile. Don’t worry about making them look too fancy, it’s the information and the interaction that are key.
4. Speak to as many reps as possible: You never know who makes the final recruiting decision so it is important to talk to everyone you meet and treat everyone with respect regardless of their level – always put your best foot forward. As you speak to more and more individuals, you will start to understand the firm’s culture and what distinguishes it from other firms.
6. Take the time to say thank you: Whether you met for a few minutes at an information session or participated in a firm tour, sending a thank you note or email shows that you are interested and appreciate the time that firm representatives took to answer your questions. This small gesture can keep you at the top of the recruiter’s mind.
7. Make the best choice for you: If you are in a position where you receive multiple offers, you may find some difficulty in choosing which firm to work for. Don’t make a decision based on outside pressure. Where do you see yourself working and fitting in? Where do you have the greatest chance to learn and grow professionally? It is time to make your mark in the professional world so make this important decision for yourself and no one else.