As hiring managers and business leaders in the Finance and Accounting industry continue to grapple with a profound skills shortage, securing knowledgeable talent has never been more difficult. The field’s low, 2.2% unemployment rate has magnified this shortage, leaving hundreds of thousands of positions unfilled.
No longer just a trend, today’s tight labor market is something that hiring managers in every industry grapple with each day. With demand in most fields outpacing supply, a dramatic skills shortage has driven the national unemployment rate down to 4.1%. Such a low level indicates the country is at a level of full employment that has talent happily employed while hiring managers struggle to keep their organizations fully staffed. This phenomenon stunts the growth of businesses in a number of ways and magnifies the importance of implementing a new hiring strategy.
When skilled talent is in high demand, hiring managers must tailor their hiring strategies and open roles to better meet the preferences of job seekers. As more and more candidates desire short-term jobs or freelance-type work, it has led to the rise of the gig economy. It’s estimated that by 2020, 40% of Americans will be working outside of traditional permanent full-time jobs. Nowhere is this future more visible than in the creative field. A study of LinkedIn users found that 46% of all freelancers work in Art/Design and 35% work in Media/Communication. In all, creatives make up 80% of the gig economy.
When you need to hire for an in-demand role like Internal Auditor, Web Developer, or Creative Director, does it turn into a long and difficult process that doesn’t even result in the best candidates? You’re not alone. Today, a skills shortage affecting the Finance, IT, and Creative fields is no passing trend but a new normal that cannot be ignored. Regardless of your industry, continuing with the same hiring strategy will only achieve the same subpar results. It’s time to adopt a new recruiting approach that can increase your talent pool while placing the best candidates into your open roles.
Those looking to hire in the creative field are quickly faced with a hard truth: locating and recruiting creative talent is a challenge. CareerBuilder numbers confirm this difficulty, as in the last year there have been 401,498 creative job postings but only 65,869 available candidates.
It goes without question that hiring managers in nearly every industry are finding it more difficult to fill roles with top talent. Part of the reason stems from external factors that make it harder to locate the right candidates when there are so few of them available. However, the lion’s share of recruiting difficulty arises from internal factors related to the hiring timeline. The average hiring process has stretched to 23 days, an eternity in high-demand fields. There are many risks associated with a long hiring process, but luckily, many solutions exist.
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.
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