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Hiring Finance & Accounting professionals: Tips and insights from our recruitment team

If you’re looking to hire in this competitive space, read these key insights from our Finance & Accounting team.

Published on

September 6, 2022


Despite reports of a possible economic slowdown, demand for Finance & Accounting (F&A) professionals continues to soar, keeping our Finance & Accounting recruitment team busier than ever. For example, compared to this time last year, we've seen an increased demand of 480% for finance admin professionals and 200% for accounts payable professionals.

If you’re looking to hire in this competitive space, read on.

We’ve gathered key insights from our Finance & Accounting team, including top roles, tips for attracting talent in this competitive sector, our forecast and more.

Top roles we’re seeing this year include:

  • Finance Officer/Analyst
  • Accounts Payable/Receivable
  • Finance Director/Manager/Business Partner
  • Accountant
  • Accounting Admin/Clerk
  • F&A Administrator
  • Payroll
  • Controller
  • Property Accountant

Top three insights from 14,000 candidates

Our team has interviewed more than 14,000 candidates since the beginning of 2022. Here are their top three insights.

1. Finance and accounting candidates prefer remote work  

Like many IT professionals, finance and accounting candidates cite the need for a quiet space to do their job and feel they can accomplish their tasks more easily from home than onsite. While many organizations are not able to provide flexible work options and are seeking a return to full-time onsite work, the majority of finance and accounting candidates we’ve spoken to are looking for either fully remote or hybrid roles.  

2. Salaries for finance and accounting roles are rising  

Rising inflation combined with stiff competition in the F&A space means many of today’s candidates are asking for higher salaries. Whereas candidates used to request a salary increase of 10% when switching jobs, we’re now seeing requests for 15-20% above their current salary. We recognize that many employers can’t increase their budgets, but if there is an opportunity to adjust your F&A salaries, now would be the time to consider doing so.  

3. Finance and accounting candidates want clear expectations 

Candidates report being so disappointed when the requirements and terms of a role are different than advertised, they either drop out of the hiring process or quit after starting the job. They request clear, transparent descriptions of the role, expectations, career growth opportunities, work location and schedule, reporting structure, challenges and issues, and so on.  

Three pro tips to attract top talent  from our Finance & Accounting recruitment specialists

Our specialized Finance & Accounting staffing agents have three tips to attract talent in today’s market:

Job Titles Matter: Some candidates are exploring new opportunities so they can have a more senior title. To retain or attract talent, consider adding “senior” or “manager” to the position—a simple, non-monetary reward that gives a candidate or employee the feeling that they are being acknowledged and progressing in their career development. - Stefanie Hopkins, Senior Account Executive, Finance and Accounting at Altis Recruitment
Look Beyond Specific Skills & Titles:  Consider candidates who might not have the specific skills or title you’re looking for. We often find great, motivated candidates from other industries who have a different job title than the one you’re looking for. For example, could you hire a full-cycle accountant into a project accountant role, and then offer training on specific skills and your industry? - Julie Page, Senior Account Manager, Finance & Accounting at Altis Recruitment
Avoid Counteroffers: These days, candidates aren’t necessarily switching roles for pay increases—it could be more work-life balance, extra vacation, a more positive work culture, career growth opportunities. Find out in the interview process what is motivating the employee to consider a change, and then consider how you could improve your package. For example, can you add another week of vacation? Have you put together a career progression plan that is clear? Have you offered any additional upskilling or professional development opportunities? - Nadine Girard, Account Manager, Finance & Accounting at Altis Recruitment

More tips: How to compete in a candidate-driven market

Here are some additional tips for attracting and hiring the best Finance & Accounting candidates on the market today:

  • Respond quickly: Today’s candidates move fast, and employers need to keep pace. Within 48 hours of receiving a promising resume, book an interview with the candidate.
  • Create a great first impression: Include at least two key decision-makers in the first interview, indicating you’re highly interested and serious about hiring.
  • Be nimble with your interview process: If you require multiple interviews, have the entire interview team prepped and ready to participate and book all interviews as close together as possible.
  • Enroll the candidate in your company: During interviews, share the values of your organization, including skills development and career growth opportunities.
  • Make your first offer your best one: Now is not the time to negotiate because you risk losing a top candidate to another offer. Make your first offer your best. Some of our clients even go above and beyond candidates’ initial salary expectations to get them excited. True tale: We worked with a client recently who lowered their salary offering because the candidate’s expectations were low. Guess what happened? The candidate ended up declining the client's offer one week before starting because they accepted a higher salary from another organization. Result: The client lost out and had to start their search over again.
  • Re-think must-haves: Does your candidate need to be fluent in both French and English to do the job? Do you really require PCP certification, or would many years of on-the-job experience suffice?
“To boost retention of your finance and accounting team members, I recommend implementing an employee-driven career pathing process that boosts growth and development through meaningful work.” - Tharie Ouelette, Controller, Altis Recruitment

Our forecast for the rest of 2022

With the number of vacancies across the country (more than one million) outnumbering unemployed workers for the first time since tracking began in 2015, we don’t expect the demand for talent to slow down this year. And while some positions are onsite only or hybrid, we see more employers trying to re-think their workforce strategies and deciding how to accommodate employees who want more flexibility. As businesses look to facilitate business decisions with information at a glance, the ability to visualize and tell a story with data is a hot skill, so it’s no surprise we’re seeing increased demand for Financial BI reporting experience.

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