We want to create an exceptionally simple work process that will allow us to have a healthy work schedule even during the busy season.
I currently serve as the Manager of the Financial Accounting Group of the Accounting Management Department. Our biggest mission is to disclose the non-consolidated and consolidated financial results of Recruit Holdings and the Recruit Group respectively in an appropriate and timely manner. We gather the necessary information and create financial statements, but our job is not simply to gather and summarize information, we must understand the meaning behind these numbers, which reflect the various events that occur throughout our business activities and the individual actions of the tens of thousands of employees in Recruit Group. We are expected to convey this information, along with the current state of our various businesses, so that there is no misunderstanding. It is also important that we understand the business and disclosure strategies and reflect them in the financial statements. The data included in the disclosure documents we create are critical tools used to communicate with the capital market. We must, therefore, coordinate closely with management and IR to create financial statements that promote our management’s message.
The international revenue ratio has risen in recent years, and in particular, the HR Technology business is continuing to grow rapidly. Back when Recruit’s business was mainly domestic advertising, performance was mostly swayed by Japan’s economic fluctuations, so it was relatively easy to explain the changes in numbers. However, many changes are now influenced by international events, making the situation more complex. Furthermore, Recruit adopted the International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) several years ago. The standard requires decisions to be made based on company policies, so the entire Group needs to engage in accounting work with a properly shared awareness. For example, what sort of packages do we use to collect data from each company in the Consolidated Group, and how are they reflected in the financial statements? As Recruit’s businesses grow more global and diverse, I believe our most crucial challenge is to simplify and optimize the accounting process so that we can disclose financial results in an appropriate and timely manner.
I joined the Company eight years ago, and since then, there have been drastic changes to the environment surrounding the accounting department, both inside and outside the Company. As such, we have been extremely busy trying to adapt to the changes as quickly as possible. Since becoming a listed company 10 years ago, the department has been responding to many changes including the globalization of business, the adoption of IFRS, changes to the management and organizational structures, and revisions to various systems. We continuously adapted so that we could disclose financial results in an appropriate and timely manner no matter the circumstances, but the inevitable consequence was that our processes grew more complicated. Against this backdrop, we held discussions on what our goals should be as an accounting department. The answer was to condense accounting operations so that we could also focus on planning operations. We established these new goals and spread awareness throughout the team members. To achieve our goals, our members thoroughly reviewed the process of creating financial statements and established a project aimed at condensing operations. Our goal is to create an environment where we can reduce heavy work loads even during the busy settlement period and have a healthy work schedule. To do so, we are taking on the challenge of radical reform. Widespread use of remote work today has made working easier, but with our efforts, we hope to create an even more comfortable working environment.
The Accounting Management Department is also where management data from across the entire Group is gathered. If we can condense the man-hours needed in our operations and focus more on analyzing data and communicating with each business, I’m sure accounting will be able to provide useful insights to management. Going forward, I hope to continue evolving with our members to become a top-level global finance organization.
Challenging myself to take on things I’m not good at made me who I am today.
When I joined the Company eight years ago, I was looking for a career change that would allow me to work globally and find myself new challenges. During the interviews, I was drawn to the fresh, almost naive seeming string of messages like “having a sense of ownership” and “the reward for work is work.” At the same time, I felt that simply putting forth the correct arguments wouldn’t get me anywhere in this company. In my previous job at an auditing firm, we put our all into just doing what needed to be done, but at Recruit, we need to think about “what we want to do” and “for what reason.” I wasn’t good at efficiently conveying my thoughts like that, so diving headlong into Recruit’s corporate culture, where I needed to communicate myself or fail, was a big challenge. But I knew that if I was going to challenge myself to tackle the things I’m not good at, this was the time.
I was appointed as a manager in 2018, and here again, I was met with challenges. I had served as a manager during my time at the auditing firm as well, but the managers I met at Recruit were different. They were constantly thinking about each member of their teams, such as what their strengths are, what they struggle with, and what they want to do. It was here that I really understood what management is about. Since I felt I was not good at understanding people, I thought, “I want to become like these managers.” After becoming a manager, I received advice from several executives whom I respect. They said, “It’s important to get each member to leverage what they want to do, and their WILL, and elevate them to the organization’s agenda.” Also they added, “There are three types of management: operational, talent, and organizational. As manager, you must cooperate with team leaders and members to carry out operational management. To manage human resources, you must understand what each person’s strengths are and what they want to do. You must help them grow and achieve their goals. Once you do that, you must work with heads to consider what the organization needs to do to keep growing in the future and make sure your voice is heard in strategic planning.” In an organization like Recruit, which values individuality, the role of middle management is extremely important; It aligns each person’s strengths, and what they want to do, with the department or Group’s policies and missions to maximize the organization’s performance. I’m still figuring my way around through learning from mistakes and realizing how difficult it is every day. But that may be why things don’t get old even after eight years in the Company, and the reason I can keep working with a sense that I still have room to grow.
Supporting and encouraging taking on challenges as a member of the business.
I want people to enjoy the process of evolving with the business.
Among those who are considering a career change, some may be thinking of going from a professional or consulting firm to a business company. From my experience, the work in an auditing firm focused on ensuring that our client’s accounting and disclosure documents were correct. To do so, we needed to complete all necessary procedures and eliminate all issues. This is, of course, very crucial to ensuring the appropriate disclosure of financial results. However, in a business company, we are expected to decide on which tasks to prioritize within limited resources, and also fully consider what we want to achieve in the first place, and how to go about doing it. Another thing, which may be unique to Recruit, is that when someone wants to try something new, but it poses the risk of infringing on a rule, you can’t convince anyone by just saying, “It’s not possible because it goes against the rules.” You need to thoroughly think about how you can enable the business to achieve its goals by asking yourself, “Why is it not possible?” “Why is the rule the way it is?” “Is there another way?” As a member of the business, we must support and encourage challenges.
Even after eight years in the Company, I still find myself surprised by the scale and dynamic speed of changes that take place. These constant changes will likely continue into the future. As such, I believe the work and role of accounting will also be expected to change continuously. Just as I explained how we are challenging ourselves to radical reforms, our organization is still in the process of evolving. Nevertheless, all of our members are working hard to create change with our own hands by discussing how we should and want to be. I hope people who want to enjoy this process of reform will join us. I look forward to meeting you at our interview.
This article is based on information available at the time of publication.
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Accounting Management Dept.
Accounting Management Dept.