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Accountancy Ranks as the No. 1 Career for Graduates

Posted by David Jenkins

The GradConnection Video Shoot

Last Week we blogged about the video shoot we did at the March Digital studios, this week we've posting Dan's video on the accounting industry along with an article written by Richard McGowan of RMG Communications using the GradConnection sites data.

Accountancy Ranks as the No. 1 Career for Graduates

Despite the current economic difficulties, accountancy is Australia's most popular career choice among university students and graduates according to data from GradConnection, the website where companies can interact with university graduates about employment opportunities. From a sample size of 16,000 students/graduates at Australian universities, 13.6% are favouring accounting as their top career choice, in front of Engineering/Mining (11.2%), Government (10.1%) and Sales/Marketing (9.9%). The GradConnection site (www.gradconnection.com.au) covers 15 industry sectors.

“With many of the big accounting firms cutting back on their graduate intakes because of the economic slowdown, graduates start looking at some of the smaller firms for opportunities and use the internet to do the bulk of their research,” said GradConnection director Dan Purchas. “Second tier and smaller firms can have the same presence on the internet as the big companies in attracting top graduate talent and graduates and companies can interact on several levels about potential positions,” he said.

In the breakdown of roles within the Accounting profession, the GradConnection data shows 36.7% of grads are interested in financial accounting, 34.6% are interested in tax, 30.2% are interested in external audit, 29.4% are interested in internal audit and 27% are interested in management roles. Also within the large pool of students/graduates looking for careers in Accountancy, 79.3% rank equal employment opportunities as the attribute they most value in sizing up potential employers. After this, the most important employer attributes are environmental sustainability (42.7%), health and safety (37.8%) and community contribution (37.3%).

“It's also possible that graduates using the internet to research potential accountancy careers may find attractive opportunities in firms that are outside the Accountancy profession, but are still looking for top-class junior accountants for their financial operations,” said Purchas.

In terms of employer benefits that students/graduates are most looking for in potential employers, the GradConnection data reveals that 42.5% are looking for work/life balance, 38% are looking for opportunities for study leave, 35.7% are looking for a mentoring program and 28.1% would be attracted to structured training programs. On the sometimes controversial points of employees “freedoms” at work, the GradConnection data show students/graduates would like access to Facebook (53.9%), msn (40.4%) and yahoo mail (32.7%). GradConnection - Home of the Accounting GradMaker


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