Benchmark Search Hiring Insights – November 2023

As we head into the thick of the holiday season and Q4, you probably have a lot on your mind. It’s a hectic, sometimes even frantic time.

Like everyone, I sometimes forget to take a breath and think of all the things I have to be grateful for, but now’s the time. Read on for a few words about giving thanks, why your middle managers may need more support, and how to avoid resume liars.

October Jobs Report Highlights 

The latest October jobs report offers significant insights into the state of the economy. National unemployment inched up to 3.9%, marking a 0.1% increase compared to the previous month, while the unemployment rate for recent college graduates remained stable at 2.1%.

During October, the workforce saw the addition of 150,000 new jobs, driven by impressive contributions from key sectors. Healthcare led the way with the creation of 58,000 jobs, followed closely by Construction and Professional Business Services, which added 23,000 and 15,000 jobs, respectively.

Despite the increase from the year’s near-historic low of 3.4%, the unemployment rate remains rather low. This highlights the continued challenge in hiring talent, as the percentage of the population actively seeking employment remains relatively small (particularly those with college degrees). Consequently, organizations are increasingly concentrating on passive talent – individuals who are already employed but open to changing jobs.

Candidate Spotlight:

  • 18 years with BDO and looking to transition out of public
  • Active CPA
  • Most of his clientele exist of upstream oil & gas firms
  • 4 years being Director and 5 years being a Senior Manager
  • Big four public combo (EY) with active CPA
  • Has managed both Finance and Accounting functions
  • Large ERP experience
Senior Manager, Technical Accounting & Reporting
  • Big 4 public combo with 15+ years of experience
  • Industries include manufacturing, upstream oil and gas, logistics and supply chain
  • Heavy technical accounting reporting experience
  • M&A experience, ASC 842 & 805
  • Intercompany consolidations
Senior Audit Manager
  • CPA with 10 years of public accounting experience
  • Some industries include manufacturing, distribution, wholesale, retail, along with others
Senior Tax Manager
  • Big4 public combo
  • Career has been spent in the Partnership, HNW, and trust space
Senior Financial Analyst
  • Senior Financial Analyst with 3+ years of experience
  • Bachelor of Science in Business Administration and Financial Management/Investment from University of Arkansas
  • Currently using Adaptive
Senior Tax Associate
  • Big 4 KPMG Tax Associate
  • Bachelor of Science in Finance from New Jersey City University
  • CPA Eligible
  • Client industries included: healthcare, real estate partnerships, PE, S-corps and some individuals
Senior Accountant
  • Big 4 Audit Associate and previous Tax Associate with RSM
  • 3 busy seasons
  • CPA Candidate

How to say THANKS to your people

For Thanksgiving, do you typically send out a message of appreciation to your staff? Need some inspiration?

“It’s the season of gratitude, and the thing that we are most thankful for is you.”

“Before we break for Thanksgiving, we just want to say, thanks for everything you do.”

“Of all the things we have to be thankful for this year, our team is number one — including you!”

Okay you get the idea. It may sound saccharine and insincere, but a few words of thankful acknowledgement can go a long way with your people — especially if they’re accompanied by a chunk of time off.

I’ll start. 

At Benchmark Search, we could not do what we do if it were not for you. Thank you, and have a wonderful kickoff to your holiday season!

Your middle managers need some moral support

According to a recent Glassdoor report, middle managers’ morale is down. Specifically, they’re less confident in their employers’ 6-month outlooks. 

Why does this matter? Because, as Daniel Zhao, lead economist at Glassdoor, says: “Middle managers are important bellwethers for how business is doing. They’re not so high up in the company that they lose their connection to frontline employees.”

If you suspect your middle managers might be flagging, it’s time to lean into HR. 

HR can:

  • Check in with middle managers to gage their workload in terms of hiring and related matters
  • Make sure you have enough people involved with hiring and interviewing, so it’s not all on one or two managers
  • Recognize the efforts of your middle managers both in person and publicly

Hiring an outside recruiter like those of us at Benchmark Search can be very helpful in spreading the load of hiring across more people and taking some of the pressure off the middle managers.

How to avoid resume liars

You might think lying on resumes is reserved for grifters and people who desperately need a jump starts in their careers. But surprisingly, according to recent research, the most likely folks to lie on their resumes are high earners and workers with advanced degrees — up to 70% of them will admit to having lied on a resume, and even more on a cover letter. 

What are they lying about?

Education is a big one. Perhaps the candidate didn’t quite finish their degree — but almost? They feel it’s fair to round up.

Conducting background checks is one way to ensure that people are being honest. Working with a recruiter like those of us at Benchmark Search is another good measure, because we do the legwork to get to know candidates before we recommend them to you.

We are honored to be recognized as Best Places for Working Parents 2023!  
Thank you to our families for continually supporting and empowering our work!