how to hit the ground running with your job search.

  • job hunting
  • May 03, 2017

Recent accounting grads are entering into one of the most competitive job markets in history in the aftermath of COVID-19. And yet there's a lot of reason to take heart: Accountants, for example, recently landed high up on the U.S. News Best Jobs Rankings, and we're already seeing a lot of traction around the most in-demand accounting and finance jobs. What's more, most of these roles can be done remotely.

So the picture is more promising than you might think. Are you a recent accounting grad hungry for career advice on how to land your first entry-level accounting and finance job? It all starts with these simple tips.

what employers want to see in recent accounting graduates

What are employers looking for in new finance and accounting professionals? The most successful candidates in the accounting industry are those who have the basics of accounting down. Experience with generally accepted accounting principles (GAAP) provides a solid career foundation for new accountants, including those who decide to pursue a specialty in the future.

shaking hands

employers right now are equally hungry to hire entry-level candidates who bring business-savvy perspectives to the table.

You can get this through summer internships, as well as other work experience that requires awareness of business standards and norms. What should finance and accounting graduates do if they don't have a job already lined up? Randstad employment experts agree that getting any type of work experience — paid or unpaid — is a wise first step. Since you’re just starting out in your career, try to make face-to-face interactions (even if they're digitally mediated) as much as possible to forge personal connections.

job search tips for entry level accounting jobs

New grads should consider the following tips for landing their first finance and accounting jobs:

focus on networking

Tell everyone you know that you're looking for a job. Meet new contacts by participating in industry associations, volunteer groups and alumni activities. Work with a specialized staffing firm to get your foot in the door and an opportunity to show your worth.

audit your digital footprint

Review and enhance your social media presence to ensure you are more professional. Bolster your online presence by commenting on industry blogs and, if you don't already have one, create a LinkedIn profile.

do your homework

Before applying for a job, research the business and its industry — in fact, you might be surprised by what you can do with an accounting degree, for example.

business document

annual reports, press releases and local business or financial publications can be excellent sources of information on the accounting and finance sector.

customize your application materials

Tailor your resume and cover letter to each position for which you apply and address the hiring manager by name, if possible.

remember to say thanks

Show your appreciation to people who help you in your job search. Promptly send thank you emails or notes to each person with whom you interview.

Congratulations on getting your degree in finance and accounting. Now show your perseverance and let hiring managers know what sets you apart from the competition.

key takeaways

For recent accounting and finance grads, the job outlook may be rosier than you think. Plus, you can find out the moment senior accounting jobs become available by signing up for Randstad's job alerts. Just tell us the kind of opportunity you want, and we'll email you when we find it.