Confidence rises as finance leaders look to hire again
There are positive signs the UK job market is set to improve this year, according to the latest 'Robert Half CFO Confidence Index'. Nearly half (47%) of chief financial officers (CFOs) and finance directors said they felt more or slightly more confident at the economic prospects facing their companies in the next six months. This is a significant change from this time last year, when 84% of finance leaders were pessimistic about their companies'prospects.
In the bi-annual index by Robert Half, the specialist recruitment firm,nearly one in five (17%) of the UK's CFOs said their companies would be
looking to hire permanent accounting and finance staff over the next six months. This is a dramatic improvement from the 1% of CFOs who had plans to add accounting and finance staff this time last year.
CFOs based in London were the most optimistic, with nearly a third (29%) saying they resume hiring in the next six months. Rising workloads were cited as the primary reason for increasing personnel levels (65%), with business growth (55%) as another driver.
According to the survey, the majority of finance leaders who hope to recruit over the next six months will be filling new graduate roles (17%) and more junior positions (27%), which is good news for those about to set out on their careers.
The index also revealed that two thirds (67%) of CFOs intend to maintain their current accounting and finance staff levels in the next six months.
Commenting on the findings, Phil Sheridan, Managing Director of Robert Half UK said: "Our index shows that finance leaders anticipate an eventual upturn in the UK market and are planning their hiring strategies accordingly. The increase in confidence currently being felt by finance chiefs is promising for job seekers looking for either permanent or temporary positions.
However, our findings also show that half of CFOs are concerned about losing their top performers to other job opportunities. It is, therefore,
even more important that workers feel valued by employers and are given access to training, skills development and career progression within their firms. Salary progression is also being taken seriously, with our findings showing that nearly two thirds (63%) of finance chiefs will be looking to attract talent by boosting salaries."
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