Treasurer and finance hiring set to soar

Bosses set to invest in finance staff as they aim to capitalise on recovery

Job prospects for treasurers and other finance professionals are on the up, with the latest Hiring Index from leading recruiter Robert Half predicting that vacancies in the finance sector will rise by 54% in the coming six months.

With all other types of professional roles set to increase by 47%, the message of the research is that with higher-than-average growth on the horizon, finance roles will be the driving force of the UK labour market for the immediate future.

A fast-rising demand for specialist skills was cited as a key factor behind the trend.

Among the HR directors surveyed for the index, an overwhelming 91% said it was either ‘very’ or ‘somewhat’ challenging to find the skilled professionals they needed to meet their firms’ objectives.

A small, but tell-tale, 13% of HR chiefs said that a slowdown in recruitment during the recession years had resulted in a lack of candidates with the correct skills, while 35% said that a shortage of technical experts in niche areas made it difficult to hire for specific tasks.

Now that firms in the sector are gearing up for big plans to capitalise on the recovery, however, the stage is set for an applicants’ market. In financial services, 59% of senior executives are planning to recruit for new projects and initiatives, and 52% with the aim of achieving entry into new markets.

In the accountancy field, meanwhile, 44% of bosses are looking to expand upon their existing products or services.

Phil Sheridan, senior managing director at Robert Half UK, explained: “All of the indicators demonstrate that senior executives are hiring for growth. Despite recent news of restructuring in some areas of the financial services industry, confidence levels among senior executives are high and momentum will continue to build.”

He added: “We anticipate that demand will continue to build over the next 12 months for permanent and interim professionals in financial services, accountancy and finance – further extending skills shortages as business look for specialised professionals with strong commercial acumen and communications skills.

“As we head into the second half of the year, companies who are looking to hire should do so with haste as financial professionals on the market today are often receiving multiple offers.”

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