It’s no secret that the Finance and Accounting field is being transformed by technology. In a study from EY (formerly Ernst & Young), 58 percent of Finance leaders are focused on combing leading-edge technologies with process improvement. Furthermore, where organizations once relied on their IT leaders to drive these changes, CFOs are now reporting their increased involvement in the decision-making and adoption of these new technologies. According to EY, there are a number of technologies that significantly impact hiring in the Finance function.
While every demographic of Finance and Accounting talent provides valuable skills to companies in the industry, no two have a bigger impact than Baby Boomers and Millennials. In their own way, each is shaping the environment and altering hiring and retention rates drastically. In order to avoid any information loss or decrease in output between these generations, hiring managers must understand the changes each group is bringing to the Finance and Accounting field.
The Accounting and Finance sector is under an extraordinary amount of pressure to respond to a shifting talent landscape. The root cause of this shift is multi-layered – a combination of generational differences, technological advancements, and economic growth. When it comes to the hard data, CareerBuilder’s Talent Intelligence tool reveals a Hiring Indicator score of 34 for Finance and Accounting positions, which suggests “relative difficulty” in hiring for jobs in the field. Over the past year, there have been just under 1 million job postings in this industry in the U.S., with only 128,609 active candidates. That number is comprised of only 6,387 entry-level candidates and 7,375 candidates with management experience, and represents a 16.3% decrease in candidates year-over-year.
As the developed world continues to thrive on technological innovation, nearly every industry is becoming further entrenched in the digital age. Even traditional fields such as Finance and Accounting are not immune to change, with advances in AI and big data altering decades-old processes. With 69% of CFOs believing digitalization will fundamentally change the Finance leader role, the future of Finance and Accounting is set to see the biggest changes since the invention of the computer.
Locating and successfully hiring a top Finance and Accounting candidate is cause for celebration. It’s difficult to find great talent, and once they are aboard your team it can be satisfying knowing your critical open position has been filled. But will that top candidate last long? Studies show that one-third of new hires will quit within the first six months of a new role. Losing a candidate during the interview process is one thing, but losing employees months after they start is another issue to address. Companies are having trouble with employee retention for several reasons and are losing top Finance and Accounting talent at alarming rates.
Ask an employee or customer to describe your organization in one sentence and their response is the current state of your employer brand. As the skills shortage in Finance and Accounting increases the difficulty of hiring, corporate image is more important than ever. For business leaders, the top objective of employer branding is to secure high-quality talent to work for their company. When all else is equal, including compensation and benefits, the deciding factor for candidates comes down to an organization’s image. In order to attract Finance professionals with better employer branding, there are a number of steps to take.
The change currently underway in the makeup of the Finance and Accounting field is nothing short of a total transformation. With 10,000 Baby Boomers retiring each day, a chasm has formed between the most experienced generation and the youngest ones in the workforce or poised to soon enter it. Compounding the industry skills shortage problem, the generational gap in Finance and Accounting must be explored in order to uncover ways to effectively hire in spite of it.
Being surrounded by information is an inescapable reality for today’s business leaders, especially those in Finance departments. An astounding 2.5 quintillion bytes of data are created each day, which is enough to fill 10 million blu-ray discs. While CFOs have been working with numbers for decades, the current data revolution has changed the game by turning Finance leaders from reactive company auditors into proactive strategic decision makers. Specifically, here’s how big data impacts the CFO.
Good people are hard to find. It may be an old adage, but it accurately summarizes the dilemma of those hiring in Finance and Accounting. Making matters worse, when a great candidate is finally found after painstaking weeks or months of searching, a new challenge arises: Compensation.
The ongoing skills shortage is not only driving up salaries, but is also making it more difficult than ever to determine the appropriate offer to extend to a candidate. Offer an exorbitant amount to “play it safe” and tens of thousands of dollars could be spent unnecessarily. Reach out with an offer that is drastically low and the candidate may immediately move on, leaving you with no counter offer or second chance. In order to level the playing field, let’s take a look at the salaries of some of the highest paying Finance and Accounting jobs in 2017.
The Finance and Accounting industry has been embedded in the framework of the U.S. business landscape for many years, so why are workers for this sector so difficult to find? It’s an issue facing every size company, with even behemoth Johnson & Johnson taking six months to fill a junior-level Accountant role. Leaving a role open for that long lowers productivity, and ultimately, profits.
The answer to this question is multi-layered and goes deeper than an initial analysis of the low supply and high demand. The reason it is so hard to find great Finance and Accounting talent is because recent trends have driven a need for roles with complex and rare skill requirements.
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