2016 Professional hiring index: Scotland based cfos plan expansion of teams over the next six months

01 February 2016
  • 50% of Scotland-based CFOs predict an increase in new roles in H1 2016
  • 86% of CFOs and FDs in Scotland are confident in their their company’s growth prospects
  • The majority (85%) of Scottish based CFOs say that it is either very or somewhat challenging to find skilled professionals
  • The key challenge in hiring for CFOs in the region is a lack of niche technical expertise

EDINBURGH, 1 February 2016 – CFOs and Financial Directors operating in Scotland plan to increase staff levels significantly over the next six months, according to the latest Professional Hiring Index1 (‘the index’ from Robert Half UK. An average 50% of CFOs and FDs in the region predict that they will create new jobs in the next six months.

The index demonstrates that growth will continue to be on the agenda for finance and accounting leaders, with 86% of CFOs and FDs in Scotland stating they are either very confident or somewhat confident with their company’s growth prospects.

CFOs in Scotland were asked ‘What are your company's hiring plans for permanent finance professionals in the first half of 2016? Would you say you are:’

H1 2016

Accountancy & Finance Executives

Expanding – Adding new positions

50%

Maintaining – Only filling vacated positions

40%

Freezing – Not filling vacated positions and not creating new ones

-

Reducing – Eliminating positions

10%

 

*Responses do not total 100 per cent due to rounding

Source: Robert Half, 2016

 

Adding extra headcount is the result of several factors with the most common being new projects and initiatives (65%), new market penetration (35%), domestic business growth or expansion (35%) and international business growth or expansion (35%).

However, despite the best intentions of Scotland based CFOs and FDs, hiring may prove to be difficult, as 85% of respondents stated it is very or somewhat challenging to find skilled professionals. It is most difficult for Scottish CFOs and FDs to find candidates skilled in business analysis (28%), financial planning (28%) and compliance (25%).

CFOs and FDs state that a lack of niche technical experts (48%) is the main barrier to their hiring plans, followed by general demand outweighing supply (23%) and a lack of commercial business skills (18%).

Kris Flanagan, Associate Director, Scotland, Robert Half UK said:  “The index highlights that CFOs and FDs in Scotland are confident about their growth plans for 2016 and as such are actively seeking skilled professionals to add to their headcount. This will not only drive up salaries but will also impact on the ever growing war for talent in the region, which is being fuelled by Scotland’s Economic Strategy 2015 and other initiatives. We advise businesses in Scotland to act quickly if they find a candidate with the right skill set and commercial acumen, as candidates are often receiving multiple offers. It is also vital to ensure that salaries are benchmarked and existing employees are looked after if businesses wish to remain competitive in the current jobs market.”

-ENDS-

Notes to editors

1 The annual study was developed by Robert Half UK and is conducted by an independent research firm.  The study is based on more than 300 interviews with senior finance executives from companies across the UK, with the results segmented by size, sector and geographic location.

About Robert Half

Robert Half is the world’s first and largest specialised recruitment consultancy and member of the S&P 500. Founded in 1948, the company has over 340 offices worldwide providing temporary, interim and permanent recruitment solutions for accounting and finance, financial services, technology, and administrative professionals. Robert Half offers workplace and job seeker resources at roberthalf.co.uk and twitter.com/roberthalfuk.