Remotely starting a job with a new employer may seem daunting, but technology certainly makes it easier. Here’s the experience of a candidate who remotely started as an Audit Senior at a Top 15 firm.
Starting a new job remotely
As we are all aware, we are living through unprecedented times. Those who are able to, have now been working from home for the last month which has been something of a transition for many. Even more of an adjustment, however, is starting a new job without meeting your new colleagues in person, or going into the office, and starting with your new employer remotely.
This is what a number of candidates who I have found roles for in the last few months within accountancy firms have been doing, and will continue to do until restrictions are lifted. It's certainly not a conventional start to a new job, but it is perfectly manageable in a way that it would not have been possible 5 years ago.
The candidate below secured their role through Morgan McKinley in January 2020 and started their new job at the start of April. Their new job as an Audit Senior position with a Top 15 firm, moving from an Audit & Accounts Senior with an independent London firm.
How were you feeling in the 2 weeks before your start date?
I was stressed, and unsure if I would be able to start, and what the process would look like. Despite the firm ensuring me that they were looking forward to me starting as agreed, the situation was changing fast, so I was not sure which direction it was going to go.
How did you start with the firm on your first day?
It was really well organised. All of the necessary equipment was couriered to me well in advance with all the login details I would need. I also received an introduction of the person who would be contacting me on my first day. I had a few inductions and introductions over Skype on the first day, as well as a video call which allowed me to ‘meet’ my team. Everyone was really welcoming and understanding of the situation.
I met some of my colleagues in my first week and I keep on meeting the rest as we work together. New technology and the ability to see new colleagues on a video call makes it easier, and actually less stressful than in the office!
Did you follow the normal induction and training programme as you would have done in the office?
As much as possible, yes. There are some obvious things like using the equipment which is in the office, all the ‘office’ procedures etc. which are not relevant in the current situation, but the option to share screens made it easy to do the induction and training.
How are you finding the transition to your new firm's way of working from a technical perspective?
I think the fact that I moved from a small to a much bigger firm makes a big difference, mainly due to the availability of different software and expertise, although it is difficult to say which solutions were already in place, and which needed to be implemented due to the situation.
What has been your biggest challenge so far of starting with a new employer remotely?
I think first of all, getting used to working remotely on a daily basis. It was easy to work from home one day here and there, but it’s a completely different story doing it every day. Finding a comfortable chair and another table, so both my flatmate and I could work comfortably, was definitely challenging!
Have there been any unexpected positives from your experience?
I think due to the situation, people are not rushing so much, so they are willing to take their time, both personally and professionally.
What are you looking forward to the most about joining the firm 'in person'?
Despite the technology that we are lucky enough to have, I think it will be really nice to actually meet all my colleagues and go for a drink! At the end of the day, I don’t think any technology however sophisticated can replace human interaction, or for example a chat in the kitchen with a cup of coffee.
Accounting firms continue to hire...
There are firms who have roles available from Newly Qualified to Senior Manager level within Audit and Accounts who are both continuing to hire and are well placed to ensure that new joiners can start remotely.
If you have any questions about the current market or would like any advice around your longer-term career in practice, then please get in touch.