Hiring Hybrid for Tax Season (and Beyond)
Having trouble staffing up for tax season? You’re not alone! The market is tough: candidate supply is still historically low, and many candidates are still looking for remote roles.
Meanwhile, many firms are adopting rigid return-to-office policies, which limits their candidate pool to the local market (instead of hiring nationally) and is less appealing to candidates.
Some of our clients have come up with a creative solution: flexible hybrid employment. These firms are hiring remote employees but periodically having the remote employees travel to the firm office to work – in other words, they’re hiring hybrid employees.
Hiring hybrid has three huge advantages:
- Allows firms to hire the best candidates from virtually anywhere in the US (as long as the candidate lives near an airport).
- Gives candidates location flexibility and remote work, making the firm more attractive to potential candidates.
- Offers many of the benefits of return-to-office, by integrating all employees into the office environment.
Here are two real-life examples of flexible hiring hybrid approaches from AF clients:
- Firm 1, a public accounting firm in Florida, has the following flexible hybrid hiring plan:
- Candidate can live anywhere in the US as long as they’re near an airport.
- Candidate will work a minimum of 3 days per month in-person at firm offices for first 6 months of employment.
- After first 6 months, candidate will work a minimum of one week in office each quarter for the next year.
- After 18 months, firm and candidate will revisit and mutually determine best schedule going forward.
- Firm 2, a public accounting firm on the East Coast, flies in all new hires for a week of onboarding, get-to-know-you activities, and training.
- Candidate can live anywhere in the US (ET or CT preferred).
- New hires spend first week of employment at the office for welcome events (baseball games, meals, etc.), as well as onboarding, training, tech briefing, etc.
- Candidates agree to report to firm offices on an as needed basis, at firm expense, with the understanding that this will be “occasional”.
The Pluses & Minuses of Hiring Hybrid
Obviously, there are costs to this approach since both firms are bearing the cost of employee travel. But there are also significant benefits:
Wider range of candidates
Both firms had the choice of multiple exceptional candidates and both made hires within 30 days (candidates LOVED this model);
Candidates accepted salaries on the lower end of their target comp ranges b/c the flexibility was so appealing, resulting in cost savings for the firms; and,
Some in-office time
Most importantly, the firms got many of the benefits of in-office, while also attracting the very best candidates.
Flexible hybrid won’t work for every firm, but if you’re having trouble hiring great candidates, it’s a model worth considering, If you need help hiring hybrid or remote employees reach out to us at Accountingfly!