How Project HIRED is helping ease the accounting skills shortage

How Project HIRED is helping ease the accounting skills shortage
Gary Culverhouse
Gary Culverhouse
    4 minute read

The numbers tell the story.

An alarming 73% of employers have experienced some form of accounting skills shortage in the past year1. Nearly a fifth of organisations do not have the accounting talent needed to achieve their business objectives2. One study found a 33% decline in candidate applications in one month alone3, while Chartered Accountants ANZ executive Simon Grant says the Australian accounting industry is dealing with an estimated 9,000 accounting vacancies with everyone from large practices to micro businesses struggling to recruit and retain people with accounting skills4.

Amid such pressures, it is little wonder CPA Australia chief executive Andrew Hunter has suggested more Australian firms will need to look overseas to fill the accounting skills gap5 and when they do, they will find at least one innovative firm going the extra mile to meet their needs.

As one of Australia’s most trusted outsourcing providers in the Philippines, Beepo has a proud history of helping businesses grow sustainably and manage costs through accessing offshore Philippines-based talent. A key factor in our success is our ability to foster quality talent pools and as the accounting skills shortage continues to take it’s toll, we have launched an initiative to ensure more of our candidates have the skills and certifications to meet the needs of Australian businesses.

Why? Because we want to see them get HIRED.

5 qualities of a top accountant

What is Project HIRED? 

Project HIRED is a custom-designed training program that provides pre-identified candidates with specialist skills to perform in the Australian accounting environment. With focus areas including Xero Payroll, Australian Taxation, Introduction to GST and software such as MYOB and QuickBooks, the three-week course is conducted by a respected training institute and sees participants graduate with certification for Australian accounting, bookkeeping and taxation.

How was Project HIRED born?

Nurturing a quality talent pool is one of the highest priorities for outsourcing providers. As part of our commitment to connecting businesses with professional, qualified Filipino staff, we spend countless hours identifying candidates and ensuring they are ready to support onshore teams. In recent times, we wanted to take this commitment to the next level by not only finding quality accounting and finance candidates but ensuring they have the skills to perform the moment they are hired by an Australian business.

In late 2022 we started the search for a training institution that would work with us to develop a hand-crafted curriculum and were excited to partner with a respected organisation that shares our enthusiasm and passion for the project. Our focus then turned to recruiting the first batch of trainees who would benefit from the initiative.

Who can participate in Project HIRED?

When sourcing participants, we have strict criteria to ensure a high standard of talent. Trainee qualifications include:

  • A Bachelor’s degree in a finance-related course (eg: BS in Accountancy, BSBA major in Financial Management)
  • At least one year’s local work experience in general accounting
  • Extensive experience in the Philippines tax system
  •  A willingness to work in the Clark Freeport Zone, where our Beepo HQ is located.

In further good news for candidates, Beepo is subsidizing the cost of the training program as part of our effort to invest in people.

Program stages - A simple stage defining milestones in the prorgram

How does Project HIRED unfold?

The inaugural training course commenced in mid-February, with participants attending online classes from 7-10 pm, Monday to Friday. The decision to host the course in a virtual environment ensures a wider range of candidates can participate, while evening classes open the opportunity up to people already in the workforce as well as those searching for employment. After two weeks of training in Australian accounting practices, trainees then complete a week-long certification process.

How successful was the inaugural course?

An online ceremony was held at the completion of the first training course, with 44 proud ‘students’ graduating from the program. Of these, 32 are now XERO-certified and five have already been hired by Australian firms. More importantly, the remainder have entered what is now a stronger talent pool and are ready to hit the ground running when our clients require not only hard-working but highly qualified accounting staff.

This is only the beginning…

One of the most exciting things about Project HIRED is this is just the beginning. We are continuing to place graduates, recruiting another round of trainees and fine-tuning processes to deliver even better results. At a time when accounting skills shortages are creating headaches for many of our clients, it is reassuring for them to know their outsourcing partner is striving to find creative and valuable solutions to ease the load.

If 2022 was about implementing digital capabilities to improve accounting efficiencies, 2023 is about capitalising on those investments. Discover four key accounting trends to watch for this year.


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