Mishandling incoming and outgoing payments is a quick and surefire way to derail a company's budget (and reputation). That's why high-quality accounts payable/receivable clerks are critical to your organization. And if you're currently looking to fill this position, data from Burning Glass shows you're in good company: In the past year there have been more than 63,000 job postings for accounts payable (AP) and accounts receivable (AR) clerks, and each has taken an average of 22 days to fill.
Considering how important clerks' daily responsibilities are to the financial health of your company, you want to be sure you hire the best candidate possible. But what's the best way to go about this?
Here are the simple steps we recommend for finding a great hire:1. maximize the efficiency of your hiring process 2. find out what a competitive pay rate is for the position 3. hone in on top skills for AP/AR clerks 4. ensure your job description is engaging 5. learn about hiring trends specific to the role and industry 6. decide on the best method for finding quality prospects
Keep reading for more detailed guidance and advice on each step in the checklist.
1. speed up your hiring process
While the average of 22 days to fill an accounts payable or accounts receivable clerk position is fewer than other roles in the accounting and finance industry, don't assume that figure couldn't use some improvement. After all, if incoming payments and employee paychecks are falling through the cracks due to an open position, your company has much bigger troubles coming down the pike. Use the below diagram to identify where your hiring process could be streamlined for efficiency.
2. develop a competitive compensation package
Accounts payable and receivable clerks have expert number-crunching skills, so you can expect them to have a grasp on what makes for a good salary. Now let's make sure you do, too. Take a look at Randstad's 2019 Salary Guide for compensation data on this and other in-demand positions. Here are average salaries for an accounts payable clerk and an accounts receivable clerk, broken down by level of experience:
accounts payable clerk
$33,655 – $37,998
$40,591 – $45,830
$46,791 – $52,830
accounts receivable clerk
$34,318 – $38,747
$41,392 – $46,734
$48,360 – $54,602
Salary range will also vary from region to region, so make sure to take advantage of our salary calculator to get accurate and up-to-date compensation information specific to your market.
3. identify the top skills for accounts payable/receivable clerks
Are you looking for one clerk to handle all incoming and outgoing payments? Or someone to manage just the payable accounts for a single high-priority project involving multiple vendors and contractors? Talk to hiring and business managers, as well as any other relevant parties like your payroll manager, to list the experience and skills that will be most valuable to your specific clerk need.
Next, split the list into "necessary" and "ideal" categories. For example, three-way match mastery may be nonnegotiable, while accounting management experience or QuickBooks expertise is nice to have, but not necessary to fulfill the role's responsibilities. This helps both to quickly rank applicants and get an idea of what would be a good salary.
To jump-start your specific list, take a look at the most sought-after skills for an AP/AR clerk:
4. write an eye-catching job description
If crafting the job description is a tough task for you, you're not alone. Many people find it to be a challenge. Apply these three tips to your writing, though, and you'll be on the right track.
These pointers make for the foundation of a solid job description, and should help increase the number of applications coming your way. If you'd like more comprehensive help, be sure to consult our guide to writing highly effective job descriptions.
5. brush up on the latest industry trends
Changes in the accounting and finance industry will have a direct impact on hiring. So companies need to make sure they have a grasp on where the industry — and the accounts payable/receivable clerk position, specifically — is headed in order to future-proof your recruiting efforts.
Below are a few current trends relevant to AP/AR clerk positions:
- While accounts payable/receivable clerks are currently high-demand positions, the projected demand is expected to stay flat (1.5% decrease) over the coming decade.
- Increase in automation and advancements in technology are credited as factors stagnating demand.
- As technology advances, the role of accounts payable/receivable clerks is expected to shift from a transactional to an analytical emphasis.
You can find out more information specific to the accounting and finance industry in Randstad's complete hiring trends guide.
6. choose your channels to find candidates
Finding accounts payable/receivable clerks that are reliable and ready to handle your company's financial transactions is a serious task. Given the great responsibility these clerks have, it's crucial that candidates possess not only the needed skills, but have the right mindset and understanding of their duties — after all, it's your bottom line that's on the line.
Working with a professional staffing firm is a great way to ensure your applicants are all high-quality candidates. Everyone in the (deep!) talent pool is prescreened and vetted to minimize the risk of a bad hire, while maximizing the efficiency of the hiring process as a whole.
Intrigued? Satisfy your curiosity and browse available prospects in our Find Employees portal. Or, reach out to our accounting and finance experts at Randstad today and we'll get you on your way to hiring the best-fit AP/AR clerk for your organization.