2016 Professional hiring index: South-West and Wales based CFOs plan expansion of teams over the next six months

The latest Professional Hiring Index provides industry insights into the South West and Wales hiring trends

  • 58% of CFOs based in the South-West and Wales predict an increase in new roles in H1 2016
  • 85% of CFOs and FDs in the South-West and Wales are confident in their company’s growth prospects
  • The majority (85%) of South-West and Wales 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 general demand outweighing supply

BRISTOL, 2 February 2016 – CFOs and Financial Directors operating in the South-West and Wales 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 58% 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 85% of CFOs and FDs in the South-West and Wales stating they are confident in their company’s growth prospects.

CFOs in the South-West and Wales 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


Maintaining – Only filling vacated positions


Freezing – Not filling vacated positions and not creating new ones


Reducing – Eliminating positions



*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 or initiatives (48%), product or service expansion (39%) and domestic business growth or expansion (39%).

However, despite the best intentions of South-West and Wales 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.  In particular finding talented professionals with the right skills is most difficult for those in accounting (23%) and business/financial analysis (23%).

South-West and Wales based CFOs and FDs state that general demand outweighs supply (45%) as the main barrier to their hiring plans, followed by a lack of niche technical experts (23%) and a lack of commercial business skills (18%).

Matt Weston, Director, Robert Half UK said: “The index highlights that CFOs and FDs in the South-West and Wales are confident about their growth plans for 2016 and 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. We advise businesses in the South-West and Wales 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.”


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. We have once again been named to FORTUNE’s “World’s Most Admired Companies®” list and remains the top-ranked staffing firm (February 2020). Founded in 1948, the company has over 300 offices worldwide providing temporary, interim and permanent recruitment solutions for accounting and finance, financial services, technology, legal and administrative professionals. Robert Half offers workplace and jobseeker resources at roberthalf.co.uk and twitter.com/roberthalfuk.