Accountancy has a strong appeal to Gen Z with nearly half (47%) surveyed seeing benefits in the profession says report by ACCA and IPAC
The report published by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC) gathered the views of 9,000 Gen Z 18 to 25-year olds on their professional aspirations, with almost half saying that accountancy has strong appeal particularly as a gateway profession to a career in business.
The survey asked them about the issues that give them most concern right now, how may these be influencing what they want from their careers, as well as what attracts them to organisations, and their view on business.
Gen Z have higher expectations of their work life balance and job security with 48% saying a great work-life balance is a key attraction factor for employment and 58% of respondents say job security is a key concern.
It also highlights an existential moment for the profession and business because Gen Z will demand more accountability from the leaders of the organisations where they work with 41% saying that they are not wholly convinced that business leaders have integrity and do what they say.
Helen Brand, chief executive of ACCA, said: ‘The world now demands more accountability and transparency – the mantra is simple: stakeholders, not just shareholders. For accountancy, this represents a potential turning point and these young people will help create a workforce which is more diverse, more inclusive, and which will make businesses more cognisant of their broader role in society.’
Sustainability is a key concern with fewer than half of respondents, 39%, stating that businesses are currently pulling their weight in fighting climate change.
Other concerns brought up were the impact of technology, with 57% saying they are worried about the impact of technology on their own job opportunities in the future, 64% expect to have multiple careers in different disciplines in the future and 91% expect to update their capabilities continually to remain employable in the future.
Kevin Dancey, chief executive officer of IFAC added: ‘Employers have an opportunity to target a key population that includes those interested in a career that impacts long-term value creation and influences society on a wider scale. If we position the profession as one that encompasses economic, social, and environmental values, we will undoubtedly succeed in attracting young, invested talent eager to play a role in fighting climate change.’
The report said that the career of an accountant will be transformed as accountants are critical for helping to create sustainable value, and as businesses reframe goals to meet emerging needs, career paths will transform.
Brand concluded: ‘Our report explains how Gen Z will bring their talent and tech know-how to the profession and change it, pursuing careers with purpose and doing jobs that make a difference. It’s a message of opportunity and positivity as we work towards achievement in 2030 of the UN Sustainable Development Goals.’