Your job search may not be top of your priority list at the moment, but I thought I would give you some of my thoughts, on how to you can use your free time to assist you with your next job search.
DUST OFF THAT OLD CV
Creating the ideal CV can be a tricky task, but the perfect Finance CV is the very first step towards your dream job. To avoid your CV being dismissed and missing out on that all-important job interview, there are things you need to consider.
• What types of clients are you dealing with, are they just within one niche sector, e.g. Asset Management or do you have cross sector experience, property, construction, retail, solicitors, charities and hospitality? Make sure you list your full breadth of experience after all it might just be might the type of experience your future employer is looking for given their own client base
• What are the turnovers of your clients? Always list your range from smallest to largest and include on average, e.g. £1m-£100m on avg. £30m. This demonstrates the types of clients you are most used to dealing with whilst also showing your range
• Do you have international client experience, or experience of working with UK subsidiaries of international clients? Any exposure to IFRS?
• Do you have experience of working with groups of companies and/or consolidations?
• Are you managing a portfolio of clients? If so, how many clients are in your portfolio. Make things tangible where you can, if you only state you are managing a portfolio of clients – this could be any number from 2 clients to 100,000!!
• Are you responsible for WIP and Billing, and if so what is the annual fee income of your portfolio e.g. £500k. Together with the number of clients in your portfolio, this will indicate if you are doing low volume, high fee work or if you are predominantly high volume and low fee
• People management is important too, so what is the largest team you have managed or supervised, and do you have any direct reports? Do you have responsibility for appraisals? Do you do training and development?
• Are you reviewing the work of juniors? If so, what type of work are you reviewing, is it bookkeeping or accounts preparation and if so, how many sets of accounts are you reviewing?
• Are you actively involved in business development, if so, how much new business have your brought in in the last 12 months? E.g. £250k in new business through referred work and/or tenders
• Are you involved in group sales and marketing activity, including leading client pitches, attendance at group networking, and other marketing events?
• Is most of your business development through word of mouth and referrals?
Overall, you should keep the general CV formatting simple, avoid using the first person and stick to bullet points when detailing experience. A comprehensive list of your systems experience will go a long way, as more firms move towards cloud-based software, it is good to show your IT skills are up to date.
WHAT IS YOUR LONG-TERM GOAL?
If your long term goal is to stay within practice, then there are plenty of different routes to go down but you should start thinking about which way you want to steer your career now, so you are best equipped to navigate the best path;
- Specialize in a particular sector; join a firm where you can completely specialise in particular area such as Charities/NFP, Real Estate, Insurance, Film & TV and so on
- Specialize in a particular service line; choose a role which is entirely audit, outsourcing or accounting/financial reporting
- Become a true general practitioner; join a firm where you can gain exposure to audit, accounts and tax
- Move into a new service line; step into a more advisory focussed role by moving in transaction services/corporate finance
- Move into a more managerial role; become responsible for both a portfolio and team in a position of leadership
If you are considering a move, I would be happy to send over some job specifications for you to see if you are ready to make the leap or help steer your career down a certain route.
Even if you are not looking at new jobs now, now is the perfect time to let me help you prepare your CV, review you Linked-In profile and more importantly beat the rush when the recruitment gates open!