New England and the East South Central regions are expected to experience the greatest growth as Chief Financial Officers (CFOs) across the country anticipate a modest increase in full-time accounting and finance staffing levels. Eight percent of 1,400 CFOs responding to a survey from Robert Half International, Inc. plan to add staff in the coming quarter with only 2 percent foreseeing personnel reductions. In the New England and East South Central regions, 14 percent of CFOs are planning to add full-time employees and no reductions are forecast.
“Businesses in the East South Central states report the need for senior managers, as well as staff-level candidates who can meet a variety of need,” said Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of Robert Half International, Inc. “In New England, growth within the manufacturing sector is generating demand for financial professionals. Firms in both regions seek financial analysts for projects such as budget forecasting and strategic planning, as well as staff with strong information technology skills to help with systems upgrades and data management.”
Sixty-one percent of executives cite business growth as the reason for increasing staffing levels. Larger workloads were cited by 17 percent.
Hiring activity is expected to be strongest in the finance, insurance and real estate sectors. Twenty percent of CFOs polled from these sectors project adding full-time accounting employees. None of the CFOs in these sectors expected to decrease staffing.
Manufacturing and wholesale industries are also expected to exceed the national average. Nine percent of CFOs from manufacturing firms nationwide plan to grow their finance teams in the coming quarter. A net six percent of wholesale executives anticipate increased hiring.
“Companies appear to be more confident, pursuing new initiatives as well as ones that were previously postponed,” according to Messmer. He adds “Corporate governance initiatives continue to fuel demand for skilled accounting and internal audit staff as firms address ongoing Sarbanes-Oxley compliance.”