Half of UK senior finance professionals expect their organisations’ ability to attract and retain key talent to worsen in 2016, reveals new research from Savant Recruitment.
Savant which recruits Accounting and Financial Management, report 2016 Employment & Skills Outlook for Accountancy and Finance’, unveiled that roles most in demand for 2016 will be those in Risk, Compliance & Governance as markets are shaped by regulations.
This follows research by the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (Apsco) that showed a 16 per cent rise in finance and accounting jobs across the UK, yet 75 per cent of hiring managers speaking to Savant expect the rising difficulties in finding these professionals to increase over the next 12 months. As a result, two-thirds will struggle to cope with rising workloads next year and only 5 per cent expect the situation to improve.
Despite recognising a growing concern in attracting and retaining key finance skills, Savant’s report highlighted an opportunity among companies to utilise and nurture the talent within the business. While, one in five senior finance professionals admitted ‘disruptive’ individual, people with the unique ability to innovate and challenge conventional wisdom, are not being recognised within their organisations for their unique potential. Around half (44 per cent) of accountancy & finance teams believe they do not contain any ‘disruptive talent’, at a time when this is intrinsic to business performance.
Mark Sheldon, Managing Director at Savant Recruitment, said “Our report clearly underlines the ongoing concerns around recruitment in the finance sector; companies are all fiercely competing for the industry’s top talent which is in short supply. But what is apparent is the seeming lack of vision with regard to nurturing disruptive talent within organisations. Having an element of ‘disruptive talent’ is a key asset, especially at a time when demand means that new thinking and new ways of working are needed. With around half of finance teams not containing any ‘disruptive’ individuals and another 20 per cent not recognising the ones they have, it seems that more outside of the box thinking is needed if employers are going to overcome some of the challenges created by the struggles of increasing workloads.”
Finance professionals with strong leadership and commercial understanding will be high on the skills hotlist for 2016; half of those interviewed believe candidates with the ability to make effective commercial decisions and to work strategically with teams across other areas of the business will succeed.
Sheldon added: “Working smart, mitigating risk, adopting new technologies and understanding or using data to make commercial decisions will be important factors for success, so it’s not surprising that key skills in leadership, commercial understanding, risk management and data analytics are high up on the much-needed skills list. As candidates become scarcer the specialist recruitment market will be under even greater pressure and firms will be looking to recruiters for their expertise to help in finding and securing the key talent they so desperately need.”