Whether you're new to Meet the Firms or a seasoned veteran, it doesn't hurt to refresh your memory on how to be a successful recruit at this critical event.
Meet the Firms (MTF) Crash Course
If you are planning to pursue a Spring or Summer 2019 internship or need a full-time job within the next year, you need to attend Meet the Firms! This event is your chance to network with premier employers and allow them to put a face with your resume. RSVP for Meet the Firms by 5:00 p.m. on Friday, January 19, 2018.
For those of you who are underclassmen, this event is still important to you. Even
if you don't speak to any firms at MTF, it is in your best interest to go to the event
and do a "dress rehearsal" to see what it's like. When it's your turn to be recruited
as juniors, you know exactly what to expect and you're ready for it! Don't be afraid
to tell the firms that you are early in your ACCT curriculum and attending the event
to learn more about the employers and career paths.
Rules For A Good Meet the Firms Performance:
Do Your Homework on the Firms:
Know your firms of interest, especially their office locations, approximate size, and something they brag about. To find out more about your firms of interest, review the Meet the Firms Employer Profile Book (emailed to you on 1/16).
Have a Game Plan:
Review the hotel floor plan and exhibitor map documents (emailed to you on 1/16) to develop your strategy for meeting your firms of interest during the two-hour event. When attending the event, budget your two hours (120 minutes) wisely based on the number of firms you want to meet. For example, if you plan to meet 12 exhibitors, you'll have only 10 minutes per exhibit.
Know Your Location Preferences:
- Pursue an internship in the city where you want to work full-time
- Identify two city preferences and recruit with firms in your #1 location preference.
- If your GPA is below a 3.5, you should exercise caution with selecting locations outside of the Georgia/Alabama area, as you will begin to limit your employer options to the national firms, who have stricter GPA requirements.
- Most of the accounting employers are located with Alabama/Georgia.
- If your location preference is outside of Alabama/Georgia, you must have a concrete reason for wanting to go there (family is a great one!) and be sure you have previously visited that city.
- Avoid saying, "Anywhere in the Southeast," as firms want to see that you have a desire to work in their location specifically.
Know Your Service Area Preferences:
- Larger firms will want to know your service area preference - Audit, Tax or Advisory.
- Do your homework about the services areas, and be specific. It's always best to say SOMETHING, as opposed to "I'm open," which portrays a lack of commitment.
- Audit and Tax are the most common services areas, but Advisory is a growing service area within the Big Four.
Print Your Resume:
- If you do not leave a resume with every firm of interest, they are unaware of your interest.
- Print PLENTY of resume copies (at least 25) on professional resume paper to give at least one person at every firm.
- Keep your resume copies clean and crisp in a leather padfolio that you carry with you.
Dress for Success:
- Proper attire for students is BUSINESS PROFESSIONAL even though employers will be dressed business casual.
- Dress for the job that you WANT, not the one you have.
- Men, shave and get a haircut.
- Ladies, avoid wearing too much perfume and jewelry.
- Make sure your attire is neatly pressed and doesn’t distract from what is really important
- you and your resume!
Before Leaving Each Table, Drop Resume, Request Business Card:
- Provide each firm of interest a copy of your resume.
- Request the firm representative's business card in exchange for your resume.
- Write notes on back of business cards to help you remember details about the firm representative that you met.
- The hotel layout map provided via email (1/16) will identify the student waiting area where you can make notes on business cards.
- These notes will assist you with your follow-up thank you notes to firm representatives that you met.
Say THANK YOU:
Not only is it important to express your gratitude for the professionals' time (after all, some of them drove two hours one way to see us!), sending a follow-up thank you email or note is a good way to solidify your name in their minds. Remember that business card you wrote notes on about your conversation? This is a great way for you to jog that person's memory about who YOU are. For example, if you wrote "Bob just graduated from the MAcc program and loves NASCAR," you can incorporate that into your follow up message to Bob. Email is instantaneous and the best route to take, especially if you have a question to ask.
Ask the firms if they host a Summer Leadership Program (SLP): You'll hear more about summer leadership programs. SLPs are selective, 2-3 day conferences hosted in the firms' offices aimed to introduce prospective interns (juniors) to the firm culture. These all-expenses paid conferences typically consist of a mix of career development, firm education, and networking events. Although not all students are ultimately able to attend, you should inquire about them and APPLY. Your weekly ACCT Recruiting News & Events Newsletters will advertise SLPs and the details will be posted on the SOA Blog.