Trim the Fat in Your Accounting Job Search

Matt Shelly
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A lot of work goes into an accounting job search, and you can increase your chances of landing the right position by trimming excess tasks and unimportant information from your endeavor. Look at your resume, how you hunt for accounting job opportunities, and your networking efforts to find out if your job hunt could shed a bit of weight.

For accounting professionals, resumes are a way to convey information about experience, skills, and knowledge in a concise, easy-to-read format. Employers are busy, and your resume is likely one of hundreds to be reviewed. Trimming unnecessary verbiage, creating a good balance of white space and text, and speaking to the needs of employers help your resume stand out. For an accounting job search, consider various resume formats, but avoid non-traditional formats like PDF documents or graphic-heavy designs, as they can interact poorly with employer technology.

Keep your accounting job search in mind when designing your resume. Use job-specific keywords and upload your resume to networks like CareerBuilder, Monster, Ladders, and LinkedIn. Creating strong profiles on such networks reduces the time you need to search for jobs—instead of spending hours entering keywords and browsing opportunities, you can review matching positions sent to your email inbox. Headhunters often search for resumes that fit company needs, and those individuals may contact you about a job. You shouldn't forgo traditional searches altogether, but use available accounting job search technology to reduce the time you spend looking for openings.

An accounting job search that involves some professional networking could help you find opportunities that aren't publicized. It's easy to become distracted by networking and forget about the ultimate goal of finding accounting job opportunities. At the same time, you don't want to enter networking with a one-sided expectation; the strongest networks are built when all participants are both giving and receiving. Be upfront about your desire for work in the accounting industry, but don't make every interaction a request for introductions or interviews. Share your knowledge, ask for advice, be willing to learn, and interact in discussions on a range of industry-related topics, whether you're networking online in person. Avoid a bloated networking schedule by limiting yourself to one or two events each week and one hour of online networking a day. Leave room in your schedule for work, personal relationships, and an ongoing accounting job search.

Whether you're in need of a job or you want to move into a new career, it's easy to let an accounting job search take over your entire life. By trimming some fat from your job-hunt processes, limiting networking time, and ensuring your resume is on-target and efficient, you can live your life while continuing the search for a new position.



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