Remote working is more popular today than ever before.
Many financial managers, accountants, and other finance professionals have been looking for more flexible roles for years. Not only does remote work give individuals more control over their work/life balance, but it can also improve productivity and reduce stress.
When the pandemic hit in 2020 and companies started moving their teams into remote working, many business leaders discovered that remote working was also beneficial. It reduces office overheads and offers access to a broader pool of talented professionals.
Unfortunately, even though by 2025, around 70% of the workforce is set to work remotely at least five days per month, not every company offers remote work opportunities as standard. If you fell in love with the freedom of remote work in 2020 and want to continue in your new role, you need to know how to negotiate for this crucial benefit.
Step 1: Know Your Goals
It’s important to do your research before you start entering job interviews and immediately ‘demanding’ a hybrid work strategy. The good news for financial professionals is that many roles are perfectly suited to remote working.
Cloud-based tools and software make it easy to connect with clients, create balance sheets, audit, and analyse financial performance, create financial forecasts and risk analysis and deal with other common tasks from anywhere. However, this doesn’t mean remote work is the best option for every role.
Before looking for the ideal flexible role, ask yourself what you want to accomplish with your career. What kind of job do you want to end up in? A financial manager might be able to get a lot done from home, but they won’t be able to build the human relationships necessary for great leadership without the occasional face-to-face interaction.
Depending on your personal targets, you might decide it’s best to look for a role that supports part-time remote working. Alternatively, you might discover your dream job isn’t suitable for remote working at all.
Step 2: Do Your Research
Now you have an idea of the kind of role you want, it’s time to think about the type of business you want to work with. There are financial roles available in virtually every industry and vertical, especially since the pandemic. You could find yourself working for an up-and-coming start-up or a well-known and established market leader. Whichever route you take, it’s important to do your research.
If you find a business you want to work for, take your time to read through the information on their website, check the reviews left by former employees, and even examine social media posts. Usually, you’ll be able to see hints as to whether this company offers “flexible” working or not.
If you see people talking about their experiences working remotely with a company on a site like Glassdoor, or an industry forum, there’s a good chance you may be able to negotiate for a similar opportunity. There’s no guarantee that a business will give every employee the opportunity to work remotely, however – so keep that in mind.
If you can’t see any mentions of remote work online, think about the kind of business you’re going to work with. Tech-savvy companies and start-ups are more likely to support flexible working if it means they can maintain business agility.
Doing your research will give you valuable information you can use when you bring the question of remote work up in your interview.
Before you approach anyone, make it easy on yourself and talk to a financial recruiter first; let me explain why.
Step 3: Get Some Help with Preparation
If you’re worried about nailing your job interview in an uncertain financial market, the best way to invest in your future is to work with a specialist recruitment agency. A recruiter can pay attention to your needs as a candidate (such as the desire to work remotely) and help match you with potential employers who need the specialist financial skills and experience you can offer.
Recruiters are also excellent for giving you the guidance you need when making a case for yourself as a remote employee. Recruiters in the financial industry can get to know the kind of businesses you want to work for and advise you on which strategies to use to negotiate remote working as part of your package.
For instance, certain companies might not be willing to support remote work all the time. Still, they could consider giving your idea a trial run if you’re willing to come into the office two days a week and track your work using productivity management tools.
Step 4: Ask the Question Carefully
When the time comes to interact with a potential employer (usually in a job interview), you’ll be able to ask what they think about the concept of remote work.
To ensure you make the right impression on your possible boss, don’t rush in and “demand” anything. Instead, ask how the company handled the pandemic and social distancing rules and whether they usually have people working in the office full-time. It’s a good idea to ask about remote working opportunities after you’ve had a chance to showcase your talent and skills.
The good news is that if you are working with a financial recruiter, they will likely know the company’s stance on remote or hybrid working.
Step 5: Know Your Worth
If the company indicates you’ll have to always work in an office environment, you can ask questions to determine why this is the case. In some situations, you and your recruiter might be able to convince an employer to consider remote work as part of your package.
If there’s no hope of swaying the employer, that’s when you need to decide how important this benefit is for you. If your career goals centre around the ability to work remotely, it may be time to step back and look for opportunities elsewhere.
Now you know how to approach the remote work negotiation, you can begin searching for the right employer. Do your research into available roles carefully and keep your eye open for job listings where the words “flexible” and “remote” are used.
If you need help finding the right role, reach out to Rebus for our specialist help in finding you the perfect financial position.
You can connect by emailing us here or calling our direct line on 01282 930 930
About Rebus Financial Recruitment
Rebus Financial Recruitment provides a specialist and focused recruitment service to its customers, which historically range large PLCs to smaller SMEs and start-ups.
We strive to offer both the client and candidate a seamless recruitment experience. Using our expertise, we get to the heart of employer and employee needs, and, in doing so, we match the two perfectly. To find out more, get in contact with one of our team today, or you can call us on 01282 930930.