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How upcoming accountants can prepare to land a job in a COVID-19 job market


In an uncertain COVID-19 job market, upcoming accountants will need to demonstrate strong quantifiable value and upgrade their CVs to prepare to stand out in a competitive market, says one recruiter.

By Tony Zhang4 minute read

The recent survey from recruiting experts Hays has identified three crucial factors that will help upcoming jobseekers to make a shortlist.


Of the more than 1,100 employers Hays spoke to, 51 per cent nominated industry experience as the key factor that helps a candidate stand out from the crowd right now.

This was closely followed by cultural fit and a well-constructed CV with relevant experience.

“Employers are less willing to take a chance on someone at the moment, so you need to make sure you highlight relevant applicable industry experience on your CV,” Nick Deligiannis, managing director of Hays in Australia and New Zealand, advises in relation to the findings.

“Cultural fit is essential, too, which is why it’s important to research a hiring organisation’s culture and values then share in your CV and in interview examples that demonstrate how your way of working is aligned with theirs.”

Mr Deligiannis believes articulating your relevant experience with quantifiable facts will be crucial in a crowded job market.

“Employers today want proof that you could do the job well. They aren’t willing to take a chance on an unproven performer, which is why it’s important to demonstrate the relevance of your experience and the value you could bring to their organisation,” he said.

“One way to prove the relevance of your experience in your CV is to add quantifiable evidence. Ultimately, impactful numbers are very compelling in the context of a CV and allow you to undeniably prove that your experience makes you the right person for the job.”

For better chances to gain an interview in the current market, key tips include using an acceptable CV format, adding keywords to better screen algorithms according to specific industries, and to constantly prove your skills through quantifiable results.

“There are a lot of ways you could quantify and prove the relevance of your experience,” Mr Deligiannis said.

“For example, you could state the percentage increase in new sales, clients or website visitors you were responsible for, the number of team members or projects you’ve managed, the volume of work you delivered in a given time frame, your response rate for queries or the number of customers you typically served.”

Upcoming accountants will also need to offer a complete package, with soft skills becoming of great importance. According to Hays, more employers will be looking for you to sell yourself and really market yourself to create value for the organisation and show that you can be a long-term investment for the firm.

“To gain an interview in the current market, it takes a CV in an acceptable format that uses relevant keywords and is backed by proof, appropriate soft skills and the potential to add value longer-term,” Mr Deligiannis said.

According to the new data from Hays, just 28 per cent of Australia and New Zealand’s current jobseekers say they understand what’s required to make a job interview shortlist today.

A further 33 per cent understand “to a certain extent”, while the final 39 per cent admit to having no understanding of how to gain a place on an interview shortlist today.

“COVID-19 has changed the world of work, with employers now valuing new skills and qualities,” Mr Deligiannis said. 

“Clearly, a significant percentage of today’s jobseekers do not feel informed as to what they need to do to ensure their CV will earn them a place on the interview shortlist.”

How upcoming accountants can prepare to land a job in a COVID-19 job market
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Tony Zhang

Tony Zhang


Tony Zhang is a journalist at Accountants Daily, which is the leading source of news, strategy and educational content for professionals working in the accounting sector.

Since joining the Momentum Media team in 2020, Tony has written for a range of its publications including Lawyers Weekly, Adviser Innovation, ifa and SMSF Adviser. He has been full-time on Accountants Daily since September 2021.

You can email Tony at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.

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