Recruitment in finance and accounting remains strong: Hays

By Eleanor O'Neill, CA Today

3 May 2017

There appears to be no slowdown in UK recruitment for finance and accounting, according to research by Hays.

The UK Salary & Recruiting Trends 2017 report has shown that finance skills remain in high demand as businesses seek to fill skill shortages in the face of growth and uncertainty.

In particular, this year has seen an increased demand for those with technical financial reporting skills, knowledge of data and information security, and experience in audit, risk and compliance.

This may reflect a focus on minimising reputational risk as transparency in business becomes a bigger issue in the public eye. There has also been a rise in the number of open positions for internal control functions to improve levels of impartiality.

Auditors trained within the Big Four remain in high demand as banks and professional services firms continue a steady hiring agenda, expanding the skill sets of their regional teams. As such, entry level audit salaries are rising.

The public practice market and other areas of financial recruitment are expected to experience a shift in priorities as regulatory changes and requirements develop in the wake of Brexit.

Increased opportunity for finance professionals?

Atholl Duncan, Executive Director, UK and Global at ICAS, commented in the report: "The UK's exit from the European Union may present a dividend for some finance professionals in the short term, as British business reconfigures or life after Brexit.

"However, any positivity may be offset if the gloomier predictions about the economic outlook for the coming years become reality. Amid this uncertainty, there will be much opportunity where the skills and judgement of finance professionals will be in great demand."

The future outlook for recruitment in finance is largely positive with opportunities apparent in a broad range of organisations and sectors.

Skills shortages will continue to present a challenge and salary inflation is likely in the areas of audit, treasury, payroll, credit and for newly qualified accountants. The report states that organisations able to adapt to more agile recruitment processes will find themselves well-placed in such a competitive market.


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