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Moving jobs....again..

Moving jobs....again..

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Hi all, just after some advice please. I am an ACCA qualified (since 2013), practice based experience (over 10 years). I recently moved to Industry as a first time mover and the experience so far has been good. I am however looking to move on as i feel that i wont be able to progress any further here, e.g. due to business not expanding etc.. The issue i have is that, i am yet again having to switch jobs in a short space of time. Over the past 10 years i have had 4 jobs. I was with my first employer in practice for 7 years. I am now really struggling to convice potential employers/recruiters that my intention is not to keep moving around in jobs. My goal is to become an FD one day and establish a long term career, and i just need some luck because i feel that i have been placed in some bad roles by recruiters i.e. went into the job and the role was different to what i expected. I also unfortuantely lost a job at a big 4 practice last year, dismissed (unfairly in my opinion). I feel that i have not got over that mentally. Is this the end of my accounting career..? Any advice would be much appreciated, and thank you for taking the time to read this. 

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By Accountant A
11th Oct 2017 12:00

So you've had 4 jobs in 10 years but 3 jobs in the last 3?

Your CV is what it is and you need some coherent and convincing story to tell why that happened and why your intentions are (if they are) to stick around longer in your next role.

If you have been dismissed, you obviously need to rationalise that without slagging off your former employer. I would have thought that a recruitment agent would be best placed to help you with that.

Given your situation, I think you would be very badly advised to move now. Get your head down and get some experience. You are only 4 years PQE and in a new (industry) environment. Make yourself available for new challenges in the job, look for opportunities to add value and think beyond the confines of your job description (once you are delivering that to a high standard). Do that well and your Big 4 experience will be irrelevant. Start looking around now and you might find yourself in a worse job facing the same situation in a year's time. And stop blaming oher people. You say "i feel that i have been placed in some bad roles by recruiters". Do you not have intetviews at which you can ask questions to identify what a role entails? As an accountant, you need to have critical thinking skills.

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Replying to Accountant A:
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By raj1234
11th Oct 2017 12:19

Thank you and i appreciate your comments. I have been at my current role for 10 months now and i would like to stay longer to gain more experience. However, i face a problem in which the FC does not seem to like me because i dont go out 'drinking/socialising'. Despite my excellent efforts since i started the role to fix the 'mess', i still am not accepted here. I have given a lot here and displayed an excellent professional attitude. I have been bullied here by management and i have nobody to report this to, not even HR.

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By Moonbeam
11th Oct 2017 12:51

I went out on my own many years ago because I couldn't stand the corporate culture. Before that I moved about a great deal because I found the jobs I was given not challenging enough and not busy enough. Those were the days!
I suspect you will have problems wherever you go, given what you've said.
Why not set up your own practice? There are so many opportunities in the business world if you network regularly. Who knows where it will lead. Yes, you'll need to plan and get some savings behind you, but it's very do-able.

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Replying to Moonbeam:
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By raj1234
11th Oct 2017 13:06

Thank you for the comments. To set up a practice, a practice certificate is required right? Or do you leave the ACCA behind and go alone? Thanks!

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Replying to raj1234:
By ireallyshouldknowthisbut
11th Oct 2017 13:00

Raj, you make your own luck, and your own way.

if the FD doesnt like you, well at least 50% of that is down to you. As a miserable sod, I don't like lots of people, but I pretend too if I need to, and dont really care if the other person is pretending either, so long as in the end we get the job done.

Getting ditched from the big 4 suggests you have ballsed up quite badly at some point. You need to very much take on board what ever it was that led you to get fired, not make excuses about it if you want to remain in work.

If you are seen as the guy who hides in the corner and doesn't ever go out, id agree it will be a struggle, but its up to you to get out of that corner. Re the drinking/sociliasing, that is an important part of work too in many firms. You don't have to drink (make sure you are always driving, its not hard, plus you will get thanks for giving lifts), but you do need to be there and join in, again if you dont enjoy it, well again, die all you like inside, but outside just go along with it for a couple of hours and then go when some other slink off. Also think about things you like to do, and try and organise something that isn't around drinking.

I would not leave, you need to stick it out for 2-3 years at least, or your only option will end up being freelancing oe setting up on your own, which might of course be for you, I don't know.

Edited to add: When I worked in larger business I always hated doing all the things i said above, but if you want to work in business, then you normally have to do these things, its just part of it.

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Replying to ireallyshouldknowthisbut:
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By raj1234
11th Oct 2017 13:09

Really appreciate your comments, thank you.

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Replying to ireallyshouldknowthisbut:
Man of Kent
By Kent accountant
11th Oct 2017 23:32

Agree with this. As one who did move jobs every 2-3 year when I was in my 30s its not the best approach. Far better to tough it out and achieve something in the role.

Remember in a new role you'll be starting all over again.

Develop a thick skin and think of this role as a stepping stone. Look for opportunities that you can take and use them for examples (to future employers) of projects you've completed, difficulties you've overcome etc.

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Replying to Kent accountant:
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By raj1234
12th Oct 2017 08:40

Many thanks for comments. What can I do if they are now changing my permanent employment to a contract? They clearly want me out so what can I do if such an employer behaves like this. All I have ever done is complete my work in a professional manner with an excellent attitude.

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By andy.partridge
11th Oct 2017 15:11

Don't be in such a hurry.

Your CV is not looking so hot. The answer to that is not another quick (bad) move which might be more difficult to come by.

Build some stability in your working life and see about making a difference in the role you are in. In my old life I was told to assume the responsibility of a more senior role and it will follow that you will achieve it. There is something in that rather than just working to rule and expecting to be chosen.

Nobody places you in a bad role. Firstly, the decision to join a company is yours and if it turns out not as you hoped it is just as much your judgement that is flawed. Secondly, you are in a position to make the best of a role that might not have lived up to expectations.

No, it's not the end of your career. You can turn it around if you show the right commitment and attitude.

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Replying to andy.partridge:
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By raj1234
12th Oct 2017 08:40

Many thanks for comments. What can I do if they are now changing my permanent employment to a contract? They clearly want me out so what can I do if such an employer behaves like this. All I have ever done is complete my work in a professional manner with an excellent attitude.

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Replying to andy.partridge:
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By raj1234
12th Oct 2017 08:45

The predecessor of this role left due to the very bad behaviour of the FC. I am experiencing that now aswel. The owners and HR do not care at all, so no point approaching them. I don't understand how I can stay here any longer and develop a thick skin. As we speak, they are now trying to change my status from a permanent position to a contract position, ' oh just treat this employment as a fixed term contract'. So clearly they want me out. I don't understand what I have done to deserve this.

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By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
11th Oct 2017 15:39

Forget any idea of setting up on your own - clients can be infinitely more difficult to deal with than a drunken old sop of an F.C.

I agree with Andy you should tough it out for the time being, at least until the new year because >12 months will look better on your C.V. If you should accede and go socialising, do remember to get the F.C. on camera doing his karaoke routine or similar (and do post it to Facebook). Christmas parties are always good hunting grounds.

What happened to the previous incumbent of your post? Did he or she last long? Maybe you should dig around for any pattern of people leaving prematurely.

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Replying to I'msorryIhaven'taclue:
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By raj1234
12th Oct 2017 08:43

The predecessor of this role left due to the very bad behaviour of the FC. I am experiencing that now aswel. The owners and HR do not care at all, so no point approaching them. I don't understand how I can stay here any longer and develop a thick skin. As we speak, they are now trying to change my status from a permanent position to a contract position, ' oh just treat this employment as a fixed term contract'. So clearly they want me out. I don't understand what I have done to deserve this.

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By JCresswellTax
12th Oct 2017 09:24

Pass on his details and I will speak to him about his behaviour.

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By Selaen
12th Oct 2017 12:27

You need to kiss a lot of frogs to find a prince. Or snuffle a lot of mud to pluck a little truffle.

Every job has bad points. Show me someone who enjoys every second of their day and I'll take them in for a drug test.

Look at it in a way a new employer would; you've been dismissed from a Big4 role, and now your industry employer are "pushing you out". Sometimes it feels like the world is against us when it's actually us against the world. Are you doing something to cause this? None of us are innocent. At a previous job I thought people didn't speak to me because I was from "the old co.". Turns out they didn't speak to me because I didn't speak to them. Consider me suitably scolded.

When it comes to socialising.. A lot of the industry work is based on teamwork. You can't be that finance person who just sits at their desk, plows through the numbers and then goes home. You need to integrate with the other teams, build relations and create those lines of communication, and often these are founded out of hours. As an introvert, I get it; it sucks. I don't drink nor do I find anything more appalling than spending Friday night with *shudder* people *shudder* but every now and then I do it. Why? Because that's the culture of my company. And the team relationships grow stronger, people end up more willing to help and give up information, etc.

Suspect a bit of introspection is required. It's easy to blame the FD, the recruiters, the Big4, the moon, the tides, the hormonal cycles of carrier pigeons. Take this role for what it is, do a spot of introspection, try to fix whatever problems you find (we all have them) and try your best. Grass isn't always greener. You can go from a horrible FD to a horrible coworker & aircon set at "cool" & daily-microwaved fish & no parking kind of hell. Sometimes better the devil you know.

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By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
12th Oct 2017 12:44

raj1234 wrote:

The predecessor of this role left due to the very bad behaviour of the FC. I am experiencing that now aswel. The owners and HR do not care at all, so no point approaching them. I don't understand how I can stay here any longer and develop a thick skin. As we speak, they are now trying to change my status from a permanent position to a contract position, ' oh just treat this employment as a fixed term contract'. So clearly they want me out. I don't understand what I have done to deserve this.

I don't think I'd agree to any such contract change, even if it does get you out of the nightmare job. Once you've left, your employer will be able to issue all sorts of coded spoilers about you to prospective employers, whereas so long as you are in the job the only way they'll ever see the back of you is if they give you a decent reference.

Had your firm made overtures towards changing your status prior to your original post? If not, maybe your boss is aware of this thread.

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Replying to I'msorryIhaven'taclue:
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By raj1234
12th Oct 2017 16:31

This contract change was made a few weeks ago. I havnt even agreed to it and they seem to have done that without consulting me first. I have tried my best to integrate in this business but i feel they take things personally. They dont like me personally. Also, nobody here speak to each other much, so socialising isn't usually an option.

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By Matrix
12th Oct 2017 17:51

You need HR and legal advice. You say they have an HR department so you need to take your own advice (Citizens Advice or do a search) and then go and speak to them. Check your contract and check they have followed relevant procedures.

Maybe start working on your LinkedIn profile and connections so that, if you are available for work again, then you have a means to look for work and, if you are proactive, you may see some results which will boost your confidence.

You need to do what makes you happy (but don't make your employer's life too easy since you have rights).

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Replying to Matrix:
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By Fenella
13th Oct 2017 11:39

I'm with Matrix on this one. I once had a crap job with a horrible boss and stuck it out so I didn't look like a flibbertygibbet, but I just got more and more down about myself and it made finding the next job impossible until I got a new boss who gave me the confidence (and actively helped me) to get a much better job. It may be your fault (and it never harms to take a long hard look at yourself, looking back I may have been a complete cow to work with at times) but this particular employer sounds like a bully, and, unless I am making a unwarranted assumption from your user name, the elephant in the room is racial discrimination, especially with the sudden change of employment status, unless it is being done to everyone. I have also worked in corporate cultures that were not me, but there are companies/organisations out there that will have a culture that you CAN fit into, it just takes a while to find them. Don't just take any job to get out, but do find out which organisations or types of business may have a more acceptable office culture, and aim to work for them in the long term. And do your job as best you can - if you think they have it in for you don't give them any excuse to get rid of you, so be nice as pie, do your job, maybe suffer the odd crap night out, but have your eye on the escape route.

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Replying to Fenella:
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By I'msorryIhaven'taclue
13th Oct 2017 12:25

Fenella wrote:

this particular employer sounds like a bully

Agreed, except it's the F.C. doing the bullying. Raj, you've told us there's no H.R. department so I guess yours is quite a small company. Did the F.C. have much input into your being hired, or was it the director's decision?

Fenella wrote:

and, unless I am making a unwarranted assumption from your user name, the elephant in the room is racial discrimination,

Well Raj has already told us he's in Birmingham, so that may not be quite such an elephant. My shot in the dark is Raj is better qualified (he's told us he's ACCA qualified) than his F.C. is. But go on, Raj, are there potential ethnic issues or, alternatively, is your boss QBE?

Fenella wrote:

especially with the sudden change of employment status

A shift to industry / commerce after many years in practice. It's dog eat dog out there, nothing like as sheltered as an accountant's office. You must learn to bite back.

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By Michael Davies
13th Oct 2017 11:55

Don’t worry about it.That’s just the way the job market is, these days.Long term contracts are a thing of the past.

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Nefertiti
By Nefertiti
13th Oct 2017 12:02

Unfortunately as you are beginning to find out, there are dominant and nasty characters in most companies (private and government) with the result that if you are not regarded as part of their clique, they will go to extreme lengths to stress you out and get you either dismissed or leave voluntarily. Coupled with that, recruitment agents (the majority of whom are vile characters interested only in getting their commissions) will place anyone anywhere without regard to long term consequences. In short those days when a person would work for the same company for 5 or 10 years are long gone. The new norm is to move every couple of years as loyalty will neither get you a promotion nor an increased salary. Do be aware that a lot of employers also lie at the interview and you will only find out your true job description after you have started.

Luckily for you there are many, many recruitment agencies who you can deal with as the majority of employers don't like the hassle of advertising their roles directly. My advice to you would be to forget about becoming an FD for now, just coast along from company to company, gaining experience in different fields, until you find one you like. Best way is to work as a contractor on temp roles, that way you get to see the inside of the company and the actual role. Then if you like it and they like your services, you can always try to negotiate a permanent role if there is one. Working as a contractor gives you the excuse that you left when the contract finished, even though you may not have wanted to renew the contract yourself because the company was rubbish.
At some stage the crooked recruitment agencies will then begin to regard you as a highly experienced person in many different fields and will then start looking for better and more highly paid roles for you. This may take 2 to 3 years possibly longer depending on your abilities. But after that you can plan what role exactly you want to settle for. Don't despair for your experiences are very common.

Good Luck

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By janefg
13th Oct 2017 15:58

It is possible that changing your terms of work from employment to contract could be "constructive dismissal".

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By mrme89
13th Oct 2017 16:34

But as Raj has being employed for less than two years, he cannot make a claim in an employment tribunal for such.

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Hallerud at Easter
By DJKL
13th Oct 2017 16:57

"Wrongful dismissal is a breach of contract by the employer. “It occurs when an employee is dismissed from their employment without notice, or the correct amount of notice in accordance with their contract,” explains Philip.

“It also occurs when employment is terminated in breach of the terms of the contract. And unlike unfair dismissal, there is no qualifying period of service needed to bring a wrongful dismissal claim.”"

http://www.jobsite.co.uk/worklife/wrongful-dismissal-rights-19724/

The employer may, and I do say may, be acting in a manner where a wrongful dismissal claim might be competent, I am no expert.

If I were the OP I would:

1. ensure I held, outwith the office, all correspondence/e mails re the matter.

2.stay calm and see if employer is stupid enough to make a mistake.

3. take legal advice and follow it to the letter.

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Red Leader
By Red Leader
13th Oct 2017 17:40

"All I have ever done is complete my work in a professional manner with an excellent attitude."
This made me stop. I don't think I would ever have considered that I could honestly say that about myself in any job I've had.
I don't know you but reading between the lines, perhaps you have a personality issue, other than the bullying boss? Only you will know that about yourself. And any personal comments are very difficult to accept, I know. The bastards who tried to make personal comments to me learnt that.

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