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3 Key Traits To Look For When Hiring An Accountant

Sonia Varkey
Published January 29, 2016

When building your accounting practice, hiring an accountant can be a daunting task. An accountant is a crucial role that helps people and businesses make important financial  decisions. When it comes to hiring an accountant, the process can be long and there’s lots to consider. While many skills and professional qualifications are necessary to become an accountant, there are some key personality traits that you should look. Personality traits are important because they indicate how one will actually perform or behave once in the role. You’re looking for employees who will contribute to the growth and success of your firm and be happy in that role. And you want them to stay! This match of attitude and behavior to the actual needs of the accountant role also contributes to reducing turnover.


hiring an accountant


3 Key Personality Traits to Look for When Hiring An Accountant:

  1. High Orderliness: Individuals high in Orderliness prefer activities that require skills at organization, they like to have a plan, and have high attention to detail. They tend to develop specific goals and prioritize their efforts. Because accountants have to prepare, examine, analyze and maintain records to assess their accuracy and generate reports on this information, those high in Orderliness can make for better accountants. Another Important aspect of people that score high in this trait is they tend to adhere to rules and policies. This trait aligns perfectly because there are so many accounting rules to follow.
  2. High Industriousness: Workers that are high in Industriousness maintain high standards of work and are willing to put forth effort to attain excellence. Successful accountants have to establish long-range objectives and specify the strategies and actions to achieve them. The job requires establishing and achieving personally challenging goals and doing what it takes to master those tasks. People high in Industriousness are deadline and objective driven which is ideal when accountants have multiple projects they have to work on.
  3. High Intellectual Disposition and Problem Solving: People high in Intellectual Disposition and Problem Solving enjoy analyzing complex problems and formulating solutions. They also excel at generating new ways to solve problems and how information gets used. Those high in Intellectual Disposition and Problem Solving tend to  do well at accounting jobs.

To find out more about what these traits mean, click here.

These personality traits are based on the “Big 5” personality model which has the most research backing it when it comes to describing personality in a work setting.  When it comes to hiring an accountant, knowing their personalities will help identify who will is the best matched. But these aren’t the only behaviors you need. Build your team by identifying other traits you deem necessary to match your unique company’s culture and watch your firm produce results and grow!

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