Hiring Hybrid for Tax Season (and Beyond)

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:

  1. Allows firms to hire the best candidates from virtually anywhere in the US (as long as the candidate lives near an airport).
  2. Gives candidates location flexibility and remote work, making the firm more attractive to potential candidates.
  3. 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:

  1. 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.
  2. 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);

  • Cost saving

    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!

Blog Overview

  • Date Posted

    October 26, 2023
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