Given today's strong demand for skilled professionals in critical accounting and finance roles, businesses are increasingly turning to interim staffing solutions to access the talent they need. For the professional consultant, the benefits are obvious: The volume and variety of consulting jobs are now higher than ever, allowing ever more flexibility in choosing the next engagement and managing a work-life balance.
If you're in a career transition, looking to sharpen skills or stuck in a rut at your current job, this might be the time to consider consulting work.
Benefits of consulting jobs
Consulting jobs offer freedom, variety and possibilities for professional growth. They allow professionals to take the driver's seat in their career progress while remaining in senior-level accounting and finance positions.
Is consulting the right career path for you? It could be, if you're looking to add some or all of the following perks and benefits to your working life:
- A flexible schedule — One of the greatest benefits of working as a consultant is the ability to set your own work hours and schedule. Consulting jobs offer the chance to work as little or as much as you want. If you're hoping to go part time, you can. Or if you prefer, you can continue to work full-time hours. Some consultants even juggle two or more engagements at the same time.
- Freedom to pick companies and colleagues — Imagine being able to control where you work and whom you work with. Many professionals are invigorated by the freedom to move from challenge to challenge.
- Pay rates comparable to full-time positions — The best staffing firms can find you engagements with pay rates comparable to — or sometimes exceeding — the market rate for full-time positions. Some also offer benefits. Take a look at the Robert Half Salary Guide for Accounting and Finance to get an idea of how much your services might be worth on the open market.
- The chance to learn new skills — Working as a project-based consultant broadens your professional experience, as you typically must adapt to new environments and systems with every engagement. In addition, you can learn new skills: Larger staffing and consulting firms usually offer a range of online training and certification programs for the consultants they represent.
- A bridge to new opportunities — If you're thinking of branching out into new areas on a full-time basis, some staffing firms offer temp-to-hire positions, which give you the opportunity to test the waters before committing for the long haul. Consulting jobs also make it possible for senior accounting and finance professionals nearing retirement to continue working — on a more flexible schedule — before they begin to enjoy the life of a full-time retiree.
For expert insights and help getting your foot in the door, consider working with a staffing firm that specializes in placing midlevel and senior accounting and finance professionals so you can be sure the specialist you're paired with is knowledgeable in your particular area. These companies are more likely to have the knowledge to understand your needs and to have the contacts to match you with a position that is appropriate for your level of expertise.