August 5, 2020

Anders Ranks #104 on IPA’s Top 200 Accounting Firms List for 2020

Anders jumped up two spots to #104 on the 2020 Top 200 Accounting Firms list by INSIDE Public Accounting (IPA). IPA 100, 200, 300 and 400 firms are ranked by U.S. net revenues and are compiled by analyzing the more than 540 responses received this year for IPA’s Survey and Analysis of Firms. This is IPA’s 30th annual ranking of the largest accounting firms in the nation.

In the 11th annual ranking of the IPA 200, this list picks up where the IPA 100 left off, identifying the largest firms in the country ranking from #101 to #200. For the most recent fiscal year, IPA 200 firms range in size from $20 million to $39.5 million.

INSIDE Public Accounting reports and analyzes the news, trends, strategies and politics that affect the nation’s public accounting firms and provides information and resources to compete and operate more profitably.

Download the full list of IPA Top 100, 200, 300 and 400 firms.

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July 29, 2020

Anders Named a 2020 Top Workplace by the St. Louis Post-Dispatch

The St. Louis Post-Dispatch has honored Anders as a 2020 Top Workplace. The Top Workplaces list is based solely on employee feedback gathered through a third-party survey administered by research partner Energage, LLC. The anonymous survey measures several aspects of workplace culture, including alignment, execution and connection. Anders has been on the Top Workplaces list several times, and was ranked at the top of the Midsize Employer Category in 2016 and 2017 and second place in 2018.

“Top Workplaces is more than just recognition,” said Doug Claffey, CEO of Energage. “Our research shows organizations that earn the award attract better talent, experience lower turnover, and are better equipped to deliver bottom-line results. Their leaders prioritize and carefully craft a healthy workplace culture that supports employee engagement.”

Attributes that make Anders a top workplace include the open, collaborative work space reflecting the culture of the firm, a generous PTO and benefits package, flexibility and extensive technical and professional training programs. Anders supports and encourages employees to follow their passions in the community, and provides development dollars to help them do so.

The complete list of Top Workplaces can be found in the August 2 issue of the Post-Dispatch. Meet the 2020 St. Louis Post-Dispatch Top Workplaces.

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July 6, 2020

David Hartley Inducted as 2020-2023 MOCPA Board Member

David E. Hartley, CPA, CISA, Anders Partner and Director + Advisory, was sworn in as a Member of the Board of Directors for the Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants (MOCPA) for a three year term effective July 1, 2020.

About David Hartley

Dave has been an active member of the MOCPA throughout his career. Most recently, he has held leadership positions in the organization as an Educational Foundation Board Member and a Transformation Committee Member since 2019.

As a partner and the Director of Advisory at Anders, Dave has over 25 years of experience in C-suite leadership roles and consulting with privately-held businesses on technology planning and enterprise risk services. He has experience defining the technology strategy and roadmaps for middle market businesses. At Anders, Dave oversees the strategy of the firm’s advisory services practice, identifying areas to enhance existing services and expand into other areas. A former Chief Information Officer (CIO) for a St. Louis-based public company, Dave participates in various CIO knowledge-sharing and collaboration forums and frequently offers his thought leadership at industry conferences and in publications.

About the MOCPA

Established in 1909, the Missouri Society of Certified Public Accountants (MOCPA) is the premier professional development organization dedicated to CPAs in Missouri, representing more than 8,000 members in public practice, industry, government, and education.

Membership in MOCPA provides a professional advantage by enabling CPAs to stay current on rapidly changing technical issues, improve the quality of their work, and advance their careers.  In turn, MOCPA members carry this advantage on to the individuals and businesses they serve.

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June 24, 2020

Anders Announces 2020 Promotions

2020 promotions were announced at the Anders virtual firm meeting on June 24th. Those promoted include Auditors Brad Soderstrom, Brian Loose and Kailey Johnson. Tax promotions include Ryan Huff, Jane Maddox, Nathan Stonner, Pam Ditch, Valerie Fohne, Erin Mueller, Adam Bauer, Chrysa Cousley, Claire Rogers, Darin Winkelman and Dalton Zieser. In Outsourced Accounting, Sam Burton and Skylar Trankle were promoted. Tyler Kaberline, Alex Grosse, Rob Kotsybar, Cory Gegg, Jon Ciembronowicz, Brett Hodges, Kris Nye and Michael Mitchell from Anders Technology received promotions. Ally Bruening in Marketing, Gretchen Best in Finance and support staff member Jen Bettag were also promoted. Click on the individual’s name below in blue to read more.

Jennifer O. Bettag has been promoted to Facilities Coordinator.

Samantha N. Burton, MBA has been promoted to Senior + Outsourced Accounting.

Skylar E. Trankle has been promoted to Senior + Outsourced Accounting.

Kailey M. Johnson, CPA has been promoted to Senior + Audit and Assurance.

Adam T. Bauer, CPA has been promoted to Senior + Tax.

Chrysa A. Cousley, CPA has been promoted to Senior + Tax.

Dalton R. Zeiser, CPA has been promoted to Senior + Tax.

Darin L. Winkelman has been promoted to Senior + Tax.

Brett M. Hodges has been promoted to Senior Systems Administrator + Technology.

Jon M. Ciembronowicz, MBA has been promoted to Senior Systems Administrator + Technology.

Kris R. Nye has been promoted to Senior Systems Administrator + Technology.

Michael C. Mitchell, CCNP has been promoted to Senior Systems Engineer + Technology.

Gretchen A. Best, CPA has been promoted to Accounting Supervisor + Finance.

Stephen S. Kohler, CPA has been promoted to Supervisor + Audit and Assurance.

Ally L. Bruening has been promoted to Marketing Manager.

Brian C. Loose, CPA has been promoted to Manager + Audit and Assurance.

Erin E. Mueller, CPA has been promoted to Manager + Tax.

Pam E. Ditch, CPA has been promoted to Manager + Tax.

Valerie S. Fohne has been promoted to Resource Manager + Tax.

Alex P. Grosse, VMTSP has been promoted to IT Manager of Infrastructure and Security + Technology

Tyler A. Kaberline, CHSP, VCP-DTM has been promoted to IT Manager of Applications and Customer Service + Technology.

Rob A. Kotsybar, MCTS, MCP, MCSA has been promoted to Service Manager + Technology.

Cory N. Gegg has been promoted to Service Desk Manager + Technology.

Bradley R. Soderstrom has been promoted to Senior Manager + Audit and Assurance.

Jane M. Maddox, CPA has been promoted to Senior Manager + Tax.

Nathan P. Stonner, CPA has been promoted to Senior Manager + Tax.

Ryan M. Huff, CPA has been promoted to Senior Manager + Tax.

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June 19, 2020

Anders Ranks #5 on St. Louis’ Largest Accounting Firms

Anders is ranked #5 on the St. Louis Business Journal’s largest accounting firms list by number of professionals. With 93 CPAs as of January 2020, Anders is ranked #6 in St. Louis on total number of local CPAs.

View the largest St. Louis accounting firms ranked by CPAs.
View the largest St. Louis accounting firms ranked by local professionals.

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April 21, 2020

Tips for Acing Your Next Virtual Job Interview

As recruitment processes for many companies continue to change due to COVID-19, virtual interviews are becoming a normal part of the process. There are many similarities between interviewing in-person and virtually, and ultimately, the end goal is the same. Whether your next virtual interview is done via Microsoft Teams, Skype, Zoom, or Google Hangouts, below are some tips to consider to help ace your next virtual interview.

Prepare Your Setup

There are many things you can do ahead of time to help get prepared for your virtual interview. First, get yourself comfortable with the technology you will be using for the interview. There are many videoconferencing tools out there today, so be sure you know what system you will be using and that it works properly on your computer. Test out your camera and microphone capabilities and ensure that your internet speed allows for good video quality. It is also important to put yourself in a professional setting. Finding an area where there is a blank wall or a professional scene in the background is best. Most video software allows you to set your own virtual background during your session – if needed, you can always pick a professional virtual background. It is also important to pick a spot where there will be minimal distractions (background noise, lighting issues, etc.). If you are in a shared living space (roommates or family members) it might be a good idea to let them know what time your interview is so they will not interrupt.

Do a Test Run

If possible, ask a friend or family member to do a virtual interview test run with you. Not only will you be able to test the video/audio capabilities, you will also be able to ease some interview nerves by doing a mock interview.

Dress Appropriately

Although it might be hard to get dressed up with nowhere to go, it is important you still dress professionally for your virtual interview. Dress the same as you would if you were going in for a face to face interview. Business professional attire would likely be expected unless otherwise stated in interview instructions.

Prepare Yourself

Same as you would do when going into a face to face interview, be sure you are prepared for the interview. Think about what questions might be asked and how you would respond. Know your resume and be able to speak to your qualifications and skills. Do your research on the company and interview team and be sure to have questions prepared to ask the interview team and what the next steps in the process might be.

Think About Your Body Language

Interviewers can still get a sense for body language in a virtual interview just the same as they can in an in-person interview. Be sure to sit up straight, talk clearly, and maintain eye contact throughout the interview. It can be easy to look at yourself in the computer screen, so try your best to not let that distract you.

Be Yourself

In the end, an interview is designed to get to know the candidate and if they would be a good fit for the team and culture. Be yourself and don’t be afraid to initiate some small talk to get to know one another. This will help you relax and feel more comfortable throughout the interview.

As an interviewer, we understand things happen – kids may rush in at any moment, dogs might be barking at something outside – know that we understand there may be things out of your control, especially during times where you may be playing the role of parent, teacher, and employee. Do your best to eliminate the things that could go wrong, but if they do, apologize and continue on!

Following these tips will hopefully help you ace your next virtual interview and get you into the next round of the recruitment process, or even an offer! By being prepared and being yourself you are sure to make a lasting impression.

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March 25, 2020

What Recruiters Look for in a Resume

If you are just beginning your career, you may have recently had a professor or advisor help you with your resume. If you already have years of service under your belt, it has probably been a while since you edited or received feedback on your resume. In either of these situations, you may not have ever had a professional recruiter give you tips on how to maximize the impact of your resume for the firm you are applying for.

The Anders recruiting team is comprised of Jenna Morris, who focuses on university recruiting, and Trey Meier, who focuses on experienced recruiting. We asked Jenna and Trey what they look for in the resumes that come across their desks.

Resume Tips for Recent Grads

Jenna suggests these tips for recent college grads:

  • Include your college GPA. This is important to university recruiters when looking at students for internships or entry level positions.
  • Pay attention to formatting. Everything should be lined up, uniform, and consistent.
  • Include school and activity or athletic involvement and leadership roles. If you don’t have a lot of professional experience this will help show leadership, teamwork and initiative.
  • Include previous internship experience, job shadows, leadership programs and dates of experience and involvement for each.
  • It’s okay to have high school job experience, but if there is more current, relevant experience to your field/major, include that instead.
  • It’s not necessary to put the name of your high school or your high school GPA.
  • Include any awards, scholarships or accolades that help you stand out.
  • Make sure your contact email address is current. It’s okay to put your school email, but if you are getting ready to graduate or graduated recently you may want to put your personal email address in case your school email gets shut off.

Resume Tips for Experienced Candidates

Trey suggests these tips for more experienced professional hires:

  • There is no set standard for resume length but be mindful about your decision on what to add to a resume. Only include what is relevant about the role you previously held and the role you are applying for. Long resumes may get skimmed through while shorter resume highlight key areas.
  • Formatting is very important. If it isn’t well organized or is hard to read, that can be a red flag to a recruiter.
  • Start with an overview or summary. This can be just a few sentences on who and what kind of candidate you are that the rest of the resume will give further information on.
  • Include the month and year at your previous employers. For example: May 2019 – September 2019. This is especially important for project or contract work that was less than a year. Noting that a position was a short-term job and including the months worked shows that the position was not cut short for some reason.
  • Include skills that apply to the position you are applying for. Buzz words are always going to be helpful for the candidate and recruiter. If a job requires certain experience in a specific area, elaborate on any experience you have in that area. For example: if the job description includes ‘experience in scanning documents’ and you have experience with this, specifically state it in the resume “Scanned 50 employee’s personnel files into the company’s HRIS system”.
  • Include any achievements, accolades and promotions obtained at previous employers due to the work performed that is relevant to the role you are applying for.

Interested in learning about the open positions at Anders? Check out our current openings.

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March 3, 2020

How Anders is Focused on a New Decade of Wellness in 2020

As a firm, we strive to inspire people to be the best they can be, both personally and professionally. To help empower our employees’ overall health and well-being, each year Anders has a Wellness Initiative that focuses on helping improve employee’s well-being in all aspects of their lives. The initiative offers activities and programs to improve health while working towards an incentive based on points earned by attending and participating in these events and activities.

For 2020, the theme is ‘A New Decade of Wellness’ because we are revamping the initiative and introducing several new factors.

2019 Wellness Initiative

In 2019, 140 employees – about 72% of the firm – participated in the wellness initiative. The program was a points-based system where a certain amount of points were awarded for events and activities such as running a 5k, preventive health care visits, or attending a wellness lunch and learn.

There was also a six-week walking challenge where employees were put into teams and they tracked how many steps they got collectively each week. At the end of the six weeks, the winning team was announced and recognized. 105 employees – about 54% of the firm – participated in the walking challenge in 2019.

Employees were responsible for entering their points and steps into a wellness points tracking system set up in the firm’s intranet. The points would then go to HR for approval. At the end of the program, HR downloaded all of the point data from the intranet to determine which employees qualified for each incentive level based on the points they earned.

Changes for 2020

For 2020, we have partnered with CHC Wellbeing to use the CHC Wellbeing online portal to track points, steps, and to offer a wide variety of new ways to earn points.

One of the great benefits of using the portal is that it can be accessed from any mobile device, meaning employees can enter points for activities and events as they occur instead of waiting to get to their desk at work.

The employees are also able to link their tracking devices such as Apple Watches or Fitbits to the portal so that their steps are tracked without them having to manually enter numbers. This has allowed us to expand the walking program to be year-round instead of a six-week walking challenge. On top of earning points for their average daily steps, we will have a few two-week distance-specific walking challenges throughout the year.

The portal also offers health webinars and e-learning courses to help employees make up points for any onsite activities they may miss points for because they are out at clients or working remotely.

Why a Wellness Initiative

The benefits of investing in our employee wellness initiative is first and foremost about the wellbeing of our employees. The healthier and happier our employees are, the better they will perform at work. The onsite activities offer a fun way to build employee engagement and encourage team building throughout the firm. This is also a way we can get employees from all departments together throughout the year.

In addition to all of the positive effects the wellness initiative can have for our employees, it can also help the firm’s bottom line by lowering insurance claims and the amount of lost time at work due to illness.

Overall, the Anders Wellness Initiative helps promote positive habits for our employees which helps the continued success of the firm. If you’re interested in working for a firm that values wellness, check out current job openings at Anders.

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January 29, 2020

Anders Releases Annual Community Impact Report

Giving back is part of our social responsibility and corporate culture at Anders, and we proudly support local charitable, civic, community and trade organizations. The Anders Community Impact Report takes an in-depth look at our commitment, connections and involvement in the community in the past year, individually and collectively as a firm.

In 2019, Anders employees gave back to the community by:

  • Volunteering 3,024 hours

  • Sitting on 94 not-for-profit boards

  • Being active members of 176 local organizations

  • Participating in 115 charitable sponsorships

  • Donating over $24,700 to our 2019 Charity of Choice

Read more in the Anders Community Impact Report.

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October 23, 2019

Dealing with Occupational Burnout in Your Career

Occupational burnout is one of the top reasons cited for employees leaving a position or organization. One of the causes of employee turnover is occupational burnout which is defined as a physical or mental collapse caused by work overload or stress due to factors in one’s occupation. A common misconception is that occupational burnout occurs only because of long hours or a high volume of work. While these are both potential factors, they are not the only causes of burnout. It’s important for employees to know what burnout feels like, how to avoid it, or how to overcome it if they are already feeling burnt out.

What causes burnout?

Below are some of the most common causes of burnout in the workplace:

  1. Lack of control in your position
  2. Insufficient rewards/recognition
  3. Lack of community in or outside of the workplace
  4. Absence of fairness in the workplace
  5. Conflict of values between the employer and the organization
  6. Work overload
  7. Negative culture in the workplace/organization
  8. Poor management/leadership
  9. Lack of job security

How does burnout manifest?

Burnout can look or feel different depending on the person and the issue that is causing it. Some common effects are:

  1. Lack of enthusiasm
  2. Making mistakes or missing details
  3. Losing focus
  4. Feeling irritable with coworkers or bosses
  5. Feeling constant stress/anxiety about work
  6. Angry outbursts at work or at home

How can one avoid burnout?

There are different ways to avoid heading down the path towards burnout. Depending on your personality and needs, one or several of these options may help:

  1. Measure your wins by effort, not outcome
  2. Integrate more passion, less responsibility- if you’re adding activities to your schedule, try to make them activities that bring you happiness
  3. Take care of your body- exercise, eat healthy and drink plenty of water
  4. Try to set strict times for bed so that you are receiving 7+ hours of sleep every night
  5. Work on your positive inner monologue- be kind and encouraging to yourself
  6. If possible, try changing your work schedule to be more flexible to your needs- like coming in at 10:00am instead of 8:00am

How does one overcome burnout when it has already happened?

Again, this will depend on the issue occurring and the personality and needs of the employee. Here are some ways to overcome occupational burnout:

  1. Ask your employer for more responsibility or new education to expand your skills
  2. Request a raise if possible, or find intrinsic motivation if you cannot change your salary
  3. Take steps to connect with your colleagues or surround yourself with a positive group of peers
  4. Bring up the issues to your employer and suggest alternative strategies
  5. If there is a conflict between the employee and employers’ values- either try to align your values with the organization’s or leave the organization
  6. Avoid chronic overwork- build in non-negotiable time for recovery following particularly stressful times that can’t be avoided
  7. Take time off and actually turn work off while you’re out of the office- don’t respond to emails or phone calls until you are back to your workplace

Many employees will experience occupational burnout at some point in their careers. It is vital to know the signs of burnout and how to avoid it for both employees and employers. Human Resources and management should be watching out for their employees’ well-being so that burnout does not cause the loss of good talent. Employees have to take their work satisfaction seriously to dodge falling into the trap of occupational burnout. Satisfied employees make for a successful organization.

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