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Itís not about the moneyÖ

Salary is important, but itís not the be all and end all of your working life, say Karen Young

July 2016

Salary is not the only important consideration when choosing your next role. To make the right choice, prioritise the factors about your job and career that you feel are most important to you, and then choose the job that is the best fit. Being aware of all the extras available to you is an essential part of the decision making process. Your benefits can make a big difference to your overall remuneration package and your long-term career with the organisation. Sometimes, itís not all about the money.
With your attention focused on the headline basic salary figure it can be easy to underestimate the importance of a good benefits package. According to the Hays UK Salary & Recruiting Trends 2016 report, 64% of part qualified accountants rated flexible working as important when considering their next job. Some 57% considered a holiday allowance of over 25 days annual leave to be important and 39% of respondents thought an above statutory pension is still a benefit worth having.
However, the benefits accountancy professionals receive are not always in line with the ones that are important to them. For example, childcare vouchers are most commonly offered by finance employers, yet fewer than 10% of respondents said they were important when considering a new role. That is not to say that childcare vouchers will always be unimportant. The benefits we like can change at different points in our careers due to changes in work and personal life. There is also a disparity between employers and employees over the importance of flexible working. When deciding between different jobs flexible working options are a priority for many, yet more than half of employees did not have flexible working options in their current job.
PQs clearly value their work-life balance, with 58% of respondents saying it was the most important consideration to them when evaluating the pros and cons of a new job offer. Yet rather mistakenly only 11% of employers think encouraging a good work-life balance will help them to attract new talent. While home working or flexi-time may not be practical for all organisations, this can be an area where employers can stand out when competing for the best people.
Ambitious people will naturally look for financial support for training from employers, not only for their initial professional accountancy qualification but continued professional development throughout their career. Both employers and employees see the value of financial training support. Over half of PQs (55%) ranked it as important and it is offered by 62% of finance employers. It is worth considering the study support on offer when deciding on a new job. The benefits package is a crucial part of a job offer so evaluate what is being proposed and ask your recruitment consultant to help negotiate the best package.
There is a mood of confidence and ambition within part qualified accountancy. Almost all (98%) of PQs feel they have the skills necessary to do their current job. Yet almost half (46%) think there isnít scope for progression within their present organisation. It is no surprise then that the opportunity for career development is considered the most critical factor when choosing a new role. Employers are more likely to hire candidates who demonstrate their desire to build a career at the organisation. So enquire about career development opportunities at interview. It goes to show that it isnít all about the money!
For more go to www.hays.co.uk/pq and for further information on your salary visit salaryguide.hays.co.uk
ē Karen Young, Director, Hays Accountancy and Finance

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