As there's still a strong demand for young professionals in today's accounting landscape, students have a lot to look forward to after graduating. However, they're not without some early career jitters.

An Enactus poll of approximately 600 accounting students found that their two biggest early career fears were that they would choose the wrong job or were missing out on another opportunity (42%), along with making mistakes/not adapting quickly enough to their jobs (39%).

Young people, though, aren't the only group with concerns. An Accountemps survey of over 2,200 CFOs in the United States cited ten all-too-common mistakes made by their entry-level staff, including:

  • Consistently coming in late
  • Not showing up for work at all
  • Not following company policies
  • Making errors in their work
  • Not asking for help
  • Being rude to customers
  • Not paying attention to detail
  • Sharing office-related information on social media
  • Spending too much time on personal devices
  • Not living up to claimed qualifications

To quell these early career anxieties, more education can provide a lot of relief.

"Students should seek out experiential learning opportunities while in school, which can help differentiate themselves from others once they are ready to start their career after graduation," stated Alex Perwich, president for Enactus United States. "Be open to taking risks — and if you've made a mistake, don't make it twice."

Concerning employer concerns, young professionals also shouldn't forget to fully sell themselves while interviewing.

"During interviews, new graduates should showcase the strong technical skill sets they attained in school or through part-time jobs," said Michael Steinitz, executive director for Accountemps, per a statement. "Many job seekers fail to emphasize the customer service and problem solving skills learned through restaurant and retail jobs, volunteer work, internships, or student activities."

Accounting firm recruiting and retention expectations

For more on the surveys, head to Robert Half's site here.

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