CFOs Report on Fourth-Quarter Accounting and Finance Hiring Expectations: Executives Expect Modest Uptick in Hiring; Business Confidence Improving

TORONTO, Sept. 20, 2012 /CNW/ - Staffing levels in accounting and finance are projected to increase slightly in the fourth quarter, according to chief financial officers (CFOs) interviewed for the Robert Half Financial Hiring Index. Six per cent of executives plan to add full-time staff during the last three months of the year, while 2 per cent anticipate personnel cutbacks. The net 4 per cent is up two points from last quarter. The large majority, 90 per cent, expect no changes.

The Robert Half Financial Hiring Index, part of the company's quarterly Professional Employment Report, is based on telephone interviews with more than 270 CFOs across Canada. It was conducted by an independent research firm and developed by Robert Half International, the world's first and largest staffing services firm specialising in accounting and finance.

"Organisations are adding skilled accounting and finance professionals to meet increased business demand," said Kathryn Bolt, Canadian president of Robert Half International. "Hiring is expected to be most active in areas, such as financial analysis, payroll and accounting."

CFOs also expressed increased optimism regarding their businesses. Nearly six out of 10 (59 per cent) executives said they are somewhat confident about their growth prospects for the fourth quarter; 27 per cent are very confident. The overall confidence number, 86 per cent, is up five points from last quarter.

Accounting and Finance Hiring -- By Industry

Among industries, CFOs in the finance, insurance and real estate sector expect the most active fourth-quarter hiring. A net 16 per cent of financial executives plan to add staff. Sixteen per cent of respondents said they anticipate hiring, while none foresee personnel reductions.

Above-average hiring is expected within the professional services and manufacturing industries as well. A net 7 per cent of CFOs in each sector anticipate adding accounting and finance employees in the fourth quarter.

About the Robert Half Financial Hiring Index

First published in 1992, the Robert Half Financial Hiring Index is conducted by an independent research firm and based on more than 270 telephone interviews with CFOs from a random sample of Canadian companies with 20 or more employees. For the study to be statistically representative and ensure that businesses from all segments were represented, the sample was stratified by industry and company size (by number of employees). The results were then weighted to reflect the proper proportions of company size within each industry.

Information from the study is featured in the Robert Half Professional Employment Report, which was launched in 2010 and is the first study of its kind to monitor the hiring environment for professional-level positions exclusively. Based on more than 1,000 telephone interviews with executives throughout Canada, it provides insight on employment trends to help businesses and job seekers prepare for the upcoming quarter. To see how hiring in accounting and finance compares to other sectors, please visit www.roberthalf.ca/per.

About Robert Half International

Robert Half International was founded in 1948 and is traded on the New York Stock Exchange. Its financial staffing divisions include Accountemps, Robert Half Finance & Accounting and Robert Half Management Resources, for temporary, full-time and senior-level project professionals, respectively. The company has more than 350 staffing locations worldwide and offers online job search services on its divisional websites, all of which can be accessed at www.roberthalf.ca.

SOURCE: Robert Half Canada

For further information: Nadia Santoli, (416) 350-2330, nadia.santoli@rhi.com


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