But all is not lost. As we see the number of female accountants entering the profession increase, so we should simultaneously see an evening-out of male and female professionals who hold the top jobs.
The statistics identified in the survey reflect similar trends at Robert Half Finance & Accounting. We are seeing an increasing number of applications from women, many of whom are newly qualified with clear career ambitions.
There is no distinction between the quality of male and female candidates, and this makes it very difficult for our clients to be biased when choosing the right person for the job. This is the case across the board, whether for a trainee role or a senior position.
Another point supported by the survey is that the accountancy profession has become a diverse field, attracting a broader spectrum of entry-level professionals.
The accountancy career path is no longer seen as a vertical one, reliant on a hierarchical promotion structure. To move forward with their career, accountants don’t just have to look at the opportunities directly above them, they can now also look sideways.
This diversification has meant that women entering the profession can find ways around the glass ceiling. More women are already making the ‘sideways’ movement, and thereby penetrating senior levels in many different types of businesses – from marketing to banking, law and IT. There is also good news on the salary front. As more women infiltrate the finance profession, and subsequently are responsible for the purse strings, pay for females in the industry will have to be on a par with their male counterparts. We not only see a bright future for women in accountancy, but we also believe that the here and now already holds excellent opportunities for ambitious female accountants. The glass ceiling is definitely starting to crack. ?: