Friday 30 September 2016

Landing your first job in tax

How difficult is it to secure a graduate or entry-level role in the tax profession?

It’s certainly achievable if you pay attention to promoting the attributes and qualities that ensure your application stands out above the rest.

In your resume, your cover letter and interviews, the following suggestions can help you increase your chances of success.

Highlight your practical experience

While your academic qualifications are important, your degree alone may not be enough to catch a hiring manager’s attention.

Any practical experience you can identify will help you to be noticed. For example, have you undertaken any industry-related volunteer work. Have you held an internship? Have you been involved in the Australian Taxation Office’s Tax Help program or completed a work placement at a relevant organisation?

Describe any of these achievements in your application.

Volunteering and work placements can lead to future job opportunities, so approach them proactively, and request references from anyone you report to.

Emphasise your industry credentials

When you apply for a graduate program, it pays to focus on your status as a future tax professional.

For this, you can list the relevant seminars, conferences, presentations and professional development opportunities you’ve attended during your undergraduate career. Also mention the reputable speakers you’ve seen.

Similarly, it will count in your favour to list professional organisations with which you may be associated. For example, The Tax Institute’s free student membership is an invaluable industry qualification to include.

Demonstrating your real-world professional activities shows you’re a budding expert who will slot effortlessly into a future workplace.

Demonstrate your expertise

While you don’t have to list every unit you studied at university, it’s useful to highlight your academic achievements, including the subjects you excelled in.

You can include these in the ‘Education’ section of your application. They give a hiring manager some insights into your core strengths.

You should also list any taxation-related software applications you’ve mastered. These represent relevant, profession-specific skills that can help give you a competitive edge.

Ultimately, creating a winning application is about identifying your strengths and tailoring them to a potential job. If you ensure your application reflects your best attributes, you’re sure to reap career rewards sooner rather than later.

 Student membership

Give yourself the edge with free Student Membership

If you're a tertiary education student, The Tax Institute can help you in your career journey. Find out about Student Membership.