The audit market is evolving, shaped by economic shifts, technological advancements and regulatory changes. In this blog, we'll explore the current state of the audit market, highlighting key trends, challenges and opportunities that professionals, job seekers and businesses need to navigate.
Modern Workforce Value Factors
In today’s fast paced and quick-changing business environment, it’s more important than ever for employers to understand what employees require. According to another study that was published earlier this year regarding ‘what employees want from their workplaces’; the top 3 factors that employees want are:
Sense of Community and Good Company Culture
Employees like to feel like they are a valued part of the team and that their contributions are recognised and appreciated. This sense of community can be fostered through common areas, social events and activities.
Career Development Opportunities
Employees want to know they can grow and develop; it can really help them with engagement and motivation. Clear progression paths, mentoring and training programmes can help with this.
Positive Work Life Balance and Hybrid Working
Especially in the Audit market and their busy seasons – audit can be tough! Offering the flexibility to work from home, generous annual leave, employee wellness programmes and mental health resources can really help employees feel more engaged and motivated.
The market is competitive out there and if these 3 most wanted factors are not in your package, your employee is going to look elsewhere. Employees will be more productive, engaged and satisfied in their work if these needs are met. It will also improve employee retention dramatically as employees will be less likely to seek employment elsewhere.
Flexibility seems to be the biggest factor in the current market when considering a job opportunity. Since the COVID 19 Pandemic, there has been a global shift towards remote working. Working from home has become increasingly popular and a lot of our clients have kept up with this demand and provide flexibility with working hours and working from home.
I found some interesting statistics which I have detailed below from a series of studies and surveys to provide a picture on what the WFH environment looks like after the COVID 19 Lockdown in the year of 2022.
- 85% of employees want a hybrid approach of both home and office working (Office for National Statistics, 2021).
- 78% of those who worked from home said that it gave them an improved work/life balance (Office for National Statistics, 2022).
- 21% of respondents never want to work from home (CEPR, 2021).
It’s great to see the flexibility that clients offer, it is absolutely an attractive option to candidates, and there are many benefits to this including enhancing work/life balance and allowing employees to carry out tasks and avoiding any hassles (the school run for example!). In Q2 2023 – companies with structured hybrid policies grew a headcount by 1.5% (Forbes, 2023).
There are also some drawbacks that we can see in the market – including lack of ‘office exposure’ with trainees which can substantially help with their studies and development, but according to the statistics above – it seems the feeling is mutual.
It is however great to see the strategies in which firms are employing to maintain effective communication and collaboration, including team office days, and of course ever evolving technology!
Talent Shortages and Recruitment Challenges
As always, the audit market is facing talent shortages and recruiting skilled auditors has become a competitive endeavour. The demand for skilled professionals often exceeds the available supply, making it challenging for firms to fill key positions promptly.
In a competitive job market, firms are not only competing with direct competitors, this intensifies the struggle to attract and retain top talent.
The modern workforce values factors beyond traditional compensation, such as work-life balance, flexibility, and opportunities for professional development. Firms that fail to adapt to these changing preferences may struggle to attract and retain top talent.
Rapid technological advancements have led to a skills gap, where the skills demanded by employers may not align with the skills possessed by job seekers. Firms face the challenge of finding candidates with the right mix of technical and soft skills.
Retaining top talent is as crucial as attracting it. Firms may face difficulties in retaining employees due to factors such as limited career advancement opportunities, inadequate training programs, or insufficient recognition for their contributions.
The current audit market is dynamic, presenting both challenges and opportunities for professionals and businesses alike. By staying informed about industry trends, embracing technological advancements, and continuously developing skills, audit professionals can position themselves for success in this ever-changing market. Whether you're a seasoned auditor or entering the field, understanding the current state of the audit market is crucial for making informed decisions and navigating a successful career path.