I work with HR/Recruitment at an aquistion company. Most of our subsidiaries are small accounting firms, and we struggle with turnover/recruitment of certified public accountants. Mergers, tech and change affect the way we work and we’re overloaded with inexperienced graduates. As a result, the stereotypical accountant feels threatened, overworked and underpaid. Could really need some advice on how to deal with this issue.

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It starts from the top and their vision and execution for a balanced work place. If they don’t care and don’t seek change then your efforts will not payoff

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Agree with everyone else. But adding: is your performance tied to improving retention metrics? Because if it is, I would also ask if managers, directors and leadership are also held to the same metrics. If the answer is “well that’s your job” then you have your answer on what you realistically can get done somewhat successfully and what your future may look like at the company.

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Ask your company to pay people more, allow more work life balance measure and improve the working environment to retain people. If things don't improve, maybe your best bet is to leave and go for a better work environment yourself. Sometimes companies will never change unless they have to, and it sounds like yours hasn't felt the need to, so probably better to leave and let others deal with it.

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This is a pretty deep issue without a single answer, but using tools to make sure you're hiring the right fits behaviorally/cognitively for the load and type of work as well as training/equipping frontline managers to lead more dynamically and individually can go a long way.

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I agree with you. There are several approaches. But the desired outcome is not guaranteed, I guess.

I love the comments here, especially around hiring for fit, compensation, and work/life balance (although accountants know that is hard to come by). I would also encourage you to look at 1) what management behaviors, project assignment methodologies, and recognition (or lack of) de-incentives retention, 2) what development opportunities do these young professionals have, and 4) what ability do these young people have to steer their own careers even as early career professionals? This is a multi dimensional issue, and can’t be solved with a fly by night solution.

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