The market for finance professionals has changed noticeably in recent months. In an economy short on confidence, one would expect limited demand for finance professionals. Political uncertainty, the combination of slowing growth, rising inflation, and underwhelming economic forecasts, have all contributed to an environment of uncertainty. Despite this, the real challenge has not been in business demand but in the supply of candidates who can fulfil client requirements. Clients have opted for a blended model of both interim (gap management) and executive search to find long term solutions to key hires within their finance leadership team. Detailed below are summaries of our key findings in those categories where most client demand has fallen:
Finance Director: Alongside technical acumen, commercial and leadership intelligence are critical in ensuring Finance Directors play the combined roles of strategist, operator, leader, steward, and catalyst for change. It is clearly unusual to find all of these skills in one individual and as a consequence, organisation across all sectors have been finding it challenging to identify candidates with the right mix of skills and competencies when appointing Finance Directors. Hiring managers have had to prioritise which competencies are most critical to business success, and many have been utilising Psychometric Assessment as a key part of their Search methodology to remove subjectivity and help optimise hiring decisions.
FP&A: Many clients have experienced significant challenge in driving greater commercial insight into areas such as FP&A and Data Analytics to improve business partnering within the business. One such client challenged us to find their new Head of Group FP&A, asking us to look for “someone who is capable of being disruptive in a collaborative way and has the tenacity and resilience to get to the right answer.” Both the IQ and EQ to thrive in the role is often hard to secure, therefore opting for an executive search-based methodology to unearth individuals with skills in equal proportion is essential.
Financial Control: In addition to traditional accounting and cost centre management roles, the modern-day Financial Controller is increasingly becoming a catalyst for change, working with the CFO and other departments in the analysis and origination of strategic solutions. Consequently, the role is more three dimensional than in the past and factors considered in hiring decisions are increasingly complex and varied. This complexity, paired with fierce competition for top performers, means it is often hard to find candidates with the unique set of skills needed. As a result, we are hearing from many clients who are failing to appoint Financial Controllers through direct advertisements, internal talent teams, and contingent recruiters.
Treasury: Due to last years’ volatile and uncertain business climate, organisations were acutely aware of the need to remain sufficiently liquid and manage any risk exposure. Consequently, Treasurers are increasingly being called upon to act in an advisory capacity to the Board. Group Treasurers have also expanded their influence across the organisation, meaning any gaps between treasury and key strategic influencers are closing. With ongoing technological advancements, Group Treasurers are constantly looking for new ways to provide up to date, or real time information on cash positions and cash forecasts. This deeper insight allows Group Treasurers to better react to any cash and/or working capital needs. Therefore, they are significantly increasing their spend on treasury technology and innovations to gain maximum visibility over their function, achieving greater strategic control. As a result of this evolution, we have seen significant demand for Group Treasurers and Heads of Treasury with a process improvement mindset.
Norman Broadbent Group provides a range of Talent Acquisition & Advisory Services to corporate clients. Regardless of whether your company is in growth mode, consolidation, or turnaround, we have the expertise and knowledge to work with you. If you’d like to hear more about our track record, or to discuss a specific assignment, please contact Jonathan Stringer on +44 (0) 207 484 0036 or via email@example.comContinue Reading