As an ambitious accountant you probably want to get on and achieve career success. Being successful in your career obviously depends on a whole host of factors. The choices that you make, the experience you have, your skills, your knowledge and attributes all have an impact.
Of course you want to accumulate as much as you can to increase the chances of success. A question that often comes up is whether you need to change jobs regularly or whether it is best to be seen as a stable employee.
Most research suggests that if you change too quickly and too often it can do more harm than good. As a rule of thumb it seems like changing more frequently than every 2 years is likely to hurt you in the longer term.
You have to remember that recruiting someone is a big investment decision. It is also very costly, especially when you start to get to the more senior levels. It is not uncommon to be paying up to 30% of the first year salary if you are using a recruitment consultant or executive search organisation.
So back to you, and the question of when the right time to change job? Here are some of the factors to consider.
You are not being challenged
If you are turning up every day and are able to do your work in automatic pilot then it might be time for a change. It might be nice for the pressure to be off for a day or two but not long term as you just get bored.
You are not getting the right experience
At different stages in your career you want to acquire extra experience. You might be able to get this in your current organisation if you ask. If not you might need to move on to a new role to get the experience you are seeking.
You have no promotion prospects
You might find that there is someone or several people in the roles at the next level who are quite content where they are and are unlikely to move on. In this situation you may as well look elsewhere to progress your career.
You are not enjoying your work anymore
We all spend a lot of time at work. In any job there are going to be good and some not so good days. On the other hand if you are going into work unmotivated and finding it a bind, it is probably in the best interests of you and your employer to move on.
The Bottom Line: Every one of us is different and only you can really understand when the time is right to make a change. The most important thing is to make an informed choice.
Duncan Brodie helps accountants achieve more career success. He invites you to sign up for his free report, The 7 Biggest Barriers To A Successful Career In Accountancy
Since 2006 I’ve worked with in excess of 8,000 accountants and professionals in workshops, seminars and one to one helping them land their next jobs and become better leaders, presenters and business partners. Before that I spent 25 years in accountancy climbing the career ladder from Payments Clerk to FD. I’m a CIMA Fellow, Certified Professional Coach and Team Coach Facilitator.