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Millership309

Accountants in Perth

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Hi guys

 

Brand new on here and I was wondering if anyone could help me? I am moving to Perth in December and I was wondering what the job market is like for accountants? I qualified as a CA last year and have been on Seek to see what the market is like, I don't think I have enough experience to go in as a Senior Accountant. Do any accountants out there know if I would need to drop a level to get Australian experience under my belt? I have been working as a qualified Audit Senior/Accountant for a year now in the UK. Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Thanks.

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Hi, Welcome to PP.

We've had a number of accountants on here with mixed opinions about opportunities as far as I'm aware.

Hope someone else can give you some advice.

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From what I can gather most people arriving in Perth have to take something at a slightly lower level to get their foot in the door and gain WA experience. Also it seems to be who you know not necessarily what you know here. As a newly qualified accountant I would think there would be lots of opportunities providing you have realistic expectations.

 

Lou

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Thanks for the advise guys, think I will just need to keep my fingers crossed when I get over! Hoping to get into temporary work initially so that employers get to know me and hopefully keep me on or recommend me. Thanks again.

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the only bit I know is the accountant tests are a bit different to the uk . so you may have to sit some ozzies ones as well, a member of the family had to .But wish you well in your move and job hunt

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Hi Millership309, I'm a CIMA qualified accountant and arrived in Perth at the beginning of September. The job market is, from my experience so far, slow at the moment but is abundant with lots of candidates. Seek is a good site but I found that a large proportion of the roles advertised were done so by the agents even before the employer had budget approval for the role; even those roles that are marked immediate start - which I found really frustrating, but don't let that stop you from applying. Everything seems to go at a much slower pace recruitment wise in comparison to the UK - but keep remembering its Australia and not the UK!

 

I tried to get a role before I left the UK but didn't manage to - all the agents that I spoke to prior to moving over said it was nigh impossible to get a role from the UK due to their being a large no. of candidates in Perth and the Perth market is very face-to-face and who you know, due to the fact it is such a small city. I arranged to meet the main recruitment agents as soon as I landed and dived straight into the search.

 

95% of the recruitment agents I met were from the UK so my professional qualification was widely known and is recognised by most employers in Perth so, for me, there is no need to subscribe to CPA (although it is an easy process if you're CIMA qualified as the 2 bodies have a reciprocal membership agreement which means I do not have to sit any exams). What accounting body did you qualify with? It would be best to check with them and their counterpart in Australia to see if you need to sit any local exams - I'd suspect if you were working in a tax environment that you would need to sit the local tax exams but they will be able to be more specific with regards to your own situation.

 

I don't want to 'frighten' you but it is worth noting that the job market for accountants (& finance in general) appears to slow down dramatically from the end of Nov/ beginning of Dec until the school holidays end at the end of Jan / beginning of Feb - I haven't experienced this period yet as we have only arrived but all the agents, plus my colleagues at the company I worked for on a temp contract, said that this happens. I'd say be prepared if you're coming out then for the market to be slower than normal and a potential wait to get a role but hopefully you're experience will be a different one! I have been lucky enough to secure a permanent role as a Project Accountant so I can, hopefully, settle into the Australian work life!

 

i would also say that come with realistic expectations about salary and type of roles. From my experience, some employers want someone with WA experience and some don't really mind that you don't have it (yet) - you may have to take a role that you were maybe doing a year or two ago in the UK but you may have to do so to get a job in the first instance but also to get you that WA experience. A lot of what happens will also be down to luck and bring in the right place at the right time!

 

Good luck with the move and the job hunt - if I can help in any way the please feel free to PM me!

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I don't want to 'frighten' you but it is worth noting that the job market for accountants (& finance in general) appears to slow down dramatically from the end of Nov/ beginning of Dec until the school holidays end at the end of Jan / beginning of Feb - I haven't experienced this period yet as we have only arrived but all the agents, plus my colleagues at the company I worked for on a temp contract, said that this happens. I'd say be prepared if you're coming out then for the market to be slower than normal and a potential wait to get a role but hopefully you're experience will be a different one! I have been lucky enough to secure a permanent role as a Project Accountant so I can, hopefully, settle into the Australian work life!

 

i would also say that come with realistic expectations about salary and type of roles. From my experience, some employers want someone with WA experience and some don't really mind that you don't have it (yet) - you may have to take a role that you were maybe doing a year or two ago in the UK but you may have to do so to get a job in the first instance but also to get you that WA experience. A lot of what happens will also be down to luck and bring in the right place at the right time!

 

Good luck with the move and the job hunt - if I can help in any way the please feel free to PM me!

 

Whats your accounting background and how did you manage to secure a job? You seem to secure jobs very quickly. In a span of less than 2 months job hunting with no local experience you are able to get a contractual position and now a permanent project accounting role. I also have arrived in Sep 2013 but still have no luck to date. I have years experience in external audit in NYC with a US CPA. I applied for company accountant positions but they told me my background is in external audit. I applied for public practice firms but they told me I have no local and tax experience. I applied to bookkeeper/clerical positions but I was told I am overqualified. WTF!!!! :(

 

There is an oversupply of accountants in OZ as of the moment. It should have been taken out of the SOL.

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Whats your accounting background and how did you manage to secure a job? You seem to secure jobs very quickly. In a span of less than 2 months job hunting with no local experience you are able to get a contractual position and now a permanent project accounting role. I also have arrived in Sep 2013 but still have no luck to date. I have years experience in external audit in NYC with a US CPA. I applied for company accountant positions but they told me my background is in external audit. I applied for public practice firms but they told me I have no local and tax experience. I applied to bookkeeper/clerical positions but I was told I am overqualified. WTF!!!! :(

 

Welcome to Perth, Western Australia :wink: You will see from the posts above, and from so many others on this site, that it is who you know that counts (excuse the pun) and not what you know. It can be very frustrating for people but it is widely known, and accepted, as a way of doing business in this city. Good luck with your continuting search for work.

Edited by StraighttothePoint

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Whats your accounting background and how did you manage to secure a job? You seem to secure jobs very quickly. In a span of less than 2 months job hunting with no local experience you are able to get a contractual position and now a permanent project accounting role. I also have arrived in Sep 2013 but still have no luck to date. I have years experience in external audit in NYC with a US CPA. I applied for company accountant positions but they told me my background is in external audit. I applied for public practice firms but they told me I have no local and tax experience. I applied to bookkeeper/clerical positions but I was told I am overqualified. WTF!!!! :(

 

There is an oversupply of accountants in OZ as of the moment. It should have been taken out of the SOL.

 

Hi Ron111, sorry to hear about the frustrating time with your job search. In terms of roles, my first role was a short term contract role for 4 weeks to provide support to a mining services organisation through their business plan process. I got this after nearly 3-4 weeks of searching, which I found to be a slow, painful process. What I did seem to be able to do us build up a network and relationship with key recruiters and this went in my favour when my current role became available. I was put forward for interview and was selected out of 4 applicants. The role was originally a FTC for 12 months but once my contract was issued the role became permanent, which delighted me!

 

In terms of previous experience, my roles in the UK were primarily Management Accountant / Finance Analyst / business partnering roles. These types of roles appear to have skills and experiences that are very transferable, regardless of industry or country. I also think that I was in the right place at the right time....after I got offered the permanent role I got 3 calls from agents to attend interviews for roles that I had applied for before I got my new role.

 

My advice to you would be to keep applying for roles, keep in regular contact with the agents & try not up let the job search get you down....it will happen for you (sorry for saying that...I hated it when people said it to me....but it's true!!) - good luck!!

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Hi Ron111, sorry to hear about the frustrating time with your job search. In terms of roles, my first role was a short term contract role for 4 weeks to provide support to a mining services organisation through their business plan process. I got this after nearly 3-4 weeks of searching, which I found to be a slow, painful process. What I did seem to be able to do us build up a network and relationship with key recruiters and this went in my favour when my current role became available. I was put forward for interview and was selected out of 4 applicants. The role was originally a FTC for 12 months but once my contract was issued the role became permanent, which delighted me!

 

In terms of previous experience, my roles in the UK were primarily Management Accountant / Finance Analyst / business partnering roles. These types of roles appear to have skills and experiences that are very transferable, regardless of industry or country. I also think that I was in the right place at the right time....after I got offered the permanent role I got 3 calls from agents to attend interviews for roles that I had applied for before I got my new role.

 

My advice to you would be to keep applying for roles, keep in regular contact with the agents & try not up let the job search get you down....it will happen for you (sorry for saying that...I hated it when people said it to me....but it's true!!) - good luck!!

 

Alant - the agents obviously liked you which is key in being put forward for roles. At the end of the day you are representing them and so if they like you they will put you forward for roles and sell you to their clients.

 

Ron111 - you need your agents to like you and remember you. This is really important. Also you mentioned you had worked in external audit - can you look t your experiences to date and draw out key achievements and experience which might be relevant to employers?

 

Good luck!

 

Lou

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I agree with you Lou8670, I have been here since April and I apply every day for jobs on Seek. All I get are regrets despite having both ACCA and CIMA.

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I agree with you Lou8670, I have been here since April and I apply every day for jobs on Seek. All I get are regrets despite having both ACCA and CIMA.

 

Sorry to hear that Peps. What's your background and what sort of jobs are you applying for? Finding work is a real concern for us as the downturn here meant some people who are more than adequately qualified were made redundant and it took over 12 months for them to secure another job. I sincerely hope Oz doesn't end up that bad.

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My previous job before moving here was that of Finance Manager and prior to that I worked as a Management Accountant. I'm looking for any accounting/finance job just to get my foot in the door. I'm willing to go pro bono.

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My previous job before moving here was that of Finance Manager and prior to that I worked as a Management Accountant. I'm looking for any accounting/finance job just to get my foot in the door. I'm willing to go pro bono.

 

Have you talked to any agents and got some advice on your applications and cv?

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There is an oversupply of accountants in OZ as of the moment. It should have been taken out of the SOL.

 

As far as I read the general accountant and external auditor were taken off the WASMOL as of October 28.

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Hi ron111,

 

Just thought I would get in touch to see how your job search is going? I am a qualified accountant, I arrived in Perth 3 weeks ago and am having no luck in my job search! I am registered with 7 agencies, I look on seek every hour and call people up as soon as I see something, I've contacted every one I know here, updated my linkedin account got myself more perth connections and am willing to do pretty much anything in the accounting world! I too have been told I'm overqualified and lack WA experience!! aahh!! Luckily my husband has secured a job in sales so we are able to eat but still very frustrating!!

 

Good luck to everyone on the job search and if anyone has any tips please feel free to share :)

 

Thanks

Alison

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Hmmm, I was in 2 minds whether to post or not, as dont want to bring doom & gloom to everyone - but hey, I have plenty of time on my hands !!:wink:

 

Anyway, Im ACCA qualified with 13 years experience(maybe unlucky number???), of which, 7 years in Audit(In Big 4 for 5 years), and 6 years as Commercial Financial Controller/Finance Manager type roles. (1 year East Coast, 1 in Perth)

 

Understandably, Employers want 10 out of 10 of their requirements, and, recently, they are getting it !

 

I have been job hunting since start of May, which is 6 1/2 months now. I have met almost all the recruiters here, and get excellent feedback. However, they say there are some lower level jobs available(sub$100k, esp sub $80k), and a few very high level jobs(+$150k), but at my $100-$150k level, there is almost nothing, and a hugh amount of applicants for any scrap of a decent job.

 

Most of the Commercial accounting jobs available, prefer CA, or CPA. Most of the jobs available tend to be Management Account, Analysis, Cost controller type positions. They like Big 4 experience(dont ask me why, maybe prestige ??)

 

They want local experience, and a solid work history. Preferably matching exactly the position & systems they are trying to fill.

 

My Mate, a South African Accountant, ACCA, with a strong London banking career, was unemployed in Perth, also for 6 months, he found a job in Melbourne, and moved there last week.

 

Another Mate, was a UK Engineer who worked in Hong Kong, Singapore & Perth, was on great money at $180k, he's looking for $120k jobs, and hoping he gets them, as after 5 months of being made redundant, he signed on the dole 3 weeks ago.

 

My experience is broad, & multi-industry, more towards the entrepreneurial/manufacturing/hands-on type roles, and they are very rare !

 

The "who you know" is very true, but it is also frustrating & sad for the city. It means that the Perthians close ranks in a downturn and prefer locals, and mates, and not the best guy/girl for the job !

 

Anyway, it is what it is, hence I am looking on East coast also, as, even though there is a down turn there & also its hard to secure a job when not physically there, the career opportunities for immigrants are still over there. Having lived on both sides of Aus, the lack of entrepreneurialism & parochial nature in Perth gets up my nose sometimes.

 

In saying that, if I had a decent job, my perspective would be different & I'd probably be blind to that !

 

Just to sum up, Im not saying noone can get an accountant type job, of course people are still getting jobs, its just that I believe those people are fulfilling 10 out of 10 of the requirements.

 

If you do the same, then you can get the job too ! Personally, Iv had a fairly good, and varied career so far, but im over qualified for many of the jobs, and my varied experience is both a blessing and a burden.

 

Oh, and under the circumstances, competition is fierce amongst recruiters, where they are recruiting for positions they dont contractually have, but thats minor stuff, but others are really not playing nice ! Be careful.

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An update from my last posting on this thread. I finally found a permanent position with an accounting firm. Yes it has taken a full year......The key is never to give up. There will be one agent that will take notice of what you have to offer and put you forward. Once you get the chance of meeting the company, you just have to make sure that you stand out even if you don't have local experience and they will hire you. Good luck to those that are still searching.

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I just hope my oh doesn't take a year to find work! Although he won't be looking at straight accounting positions so we shall have to see how it goes!

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No I don't think so. I'm he will find something soon, but he needs to be open for anything and then he can move into something that he likes.

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Congrats on the new job!! woohoo!! I posted on this thread back in November as I too was looking for work, I found myself some temp work in December which I grabbed with both hands and very pleased I did as this led me to a permanent role in the same company! My advice is definitely take what you can and get your foot in the door because once in I do believe the perth companies much prefer internal recruitment :) Good luck to all :)

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