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Nontraditional applicants can aid in building pipeline

Written on Jul 31, 2020

As Silicon Valley continues to deal with increased scrutiny (looking at you Facebook and Uber), their hiring practices are under the microscope, too. This story from Fast Company covers how the tech industry, specifically IBM, is working to diversify their pipeline by looking at candidates with nontraditional backgrounds.

“For IT roles, educational pedigree often doesn’t make a huge difference. For instance, many gaming aficionados have built their own systems,” writes Cale Guthrie Weissman. “With this technical grounding, they would likely have the aptitude to be a server technician or a network technician. These roles require specific technical knowledge, not necessarily an academic curriculum vitae.”

Although the accounting profession is unlikely to begin accepting candidates with no formal education, an emphasis on hiring nontraditional applicants is another way to grow the pipeline that can’t afford to be ignored. Take the three accountants from Walthall CPAs we featured last year who all came to accounting after establishing successful careers in other areas. Nontraditional applicants can add a different perspective and offer insight into understanding other industries that can be beneficial in public or private sectors. Success in building the accounting pipeline will require contributions from all types of individuals, not just those who are accounting majors as undergrads.

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