Why One CPA, CMA Made the Leap to Finance Recruiting


This blog is an expanded version of a LinkedIn thought piece that Clarity Recruitment’s Melanie Directo, CPA, CMA published.

As a CPA, CMA working in the recruiting industry, I am often sitting across the table from a perplexed face asking me, “Why are you doing this now?” It’s a fair question, and one that I often asked recruiters that were designated accountants when I was on the other side of the table. This question comes up so often when I meet with people that I feel it deserves a post.

The Overlap Between Recruiting and My Skillset

  1. I really enjoy connecting with people.
  2. There is a common set of behaviours between good accountants and successful recruiters. Both groups share a strong sense of integrity, relentless work ethic, and a perpetual need to develop their industry knowledge and skills.
  3. A fascination with technology. While some loathe the perceived threat that technology plays in the preservation of the “old school” way of thought and doing, I am intrigued by how it fuels innovation. Top recruiting firms are using technology to improve placement success rates and the client/candidate experience.

How Did I Get Into Recruitment?
I was recruited into recruitment. When I received my accounting designation, the phone began to ring from countless recruiters.  I would tell them that I wasn’t looking. Eventually, however, someone caught me on a day when I was tired of staring at spreadsheets. I agreed to meet.  That conversation changed the course of my life. What began as a discussion about a finance opportunity, evolved into a conversation about recruiting.  We talked several more times after that, and each time I became more convinced that recruiting was something I could love. I decided to make the leap.

Next Steps
No transition comes without the challenge associated with stepping out of your comfort zone.  For those of you thinking that you may want to look at recruiting as a viable next step, here are a few things to think about:

  • Adaptability is key – If you enjoy the routine and predictable deadlines in accounting/finance, it may be challenging to adjust to an environment that demands agility in meeting your deliverables. Maintaining a positive outlook will allow you to seek opportunities and develop problem solving skills when you come up against obstacles.
  • Human beings are complex – Understand that complexity often requires “outside of the box” thinking. It will help you navigate the diverse needs of your clients/candidates.
  • Your earnings will be more directly tied to your performance – In the initial stages of your leap, this may seem daunting, but with time you will find that your hard work pays off.
  • Managing your time may initially be a struggle – A key ingredient to your success is time management. With multiple priorities on the go, you may feel overwhelmed.  Learning to stay focused and operate with efficiency will allow you to avoid burn out.

Key Takeaways
CPAs can make great finance and accounting recruiters. You’ll need a willingness to step outside of your comfort zone and a desire to see both companies and candidates succeed. Strong time management skills and an ability to adapt to changing circumstances are two of the hallmarks of a great recruiter. Ultimately, a transition has to make sense for your goals and life choices. But by opening yourself to different opportunities, you may find a surprising level of career satisfaction.

Your Next Step
No one should walk the job search or hiring road alone. At Clarity Recruitment we help others realize their success through a process that marries proprietary technology with unwavering commitment. Contact us today to take control of your career, or to partner with us to hire well.

Clarity Recruitment, connecting exceptional people with remarkable companies.

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