The New Wave of Talent Headed For the Finance & Accountancy Sector

Empty 19 May 2021

The post-pandemic recruitment boom is no secret, nor is it a surprise. After a year of furlough, redundancies, closed offices and businesses working remotely, the entire recruitment sector was hit hard throughout 2020, while most organisations put a complete, indefinite pause on recruitment. 

Now that we’re out the other side, lockdown is over and “normal life” is almost visible on the horizon, the new wave of talent available on the market is unlike ever before.

Candidates in the Finance & Accountancy Sector

With unemployment in the UK currently at 4.5% of the total population, many candidates have understandably been concerned about the lack of opportunity in the UK finance sector at present. However, from a business perspective, things now look quite different - the number of jobs being advertised rose by 16% in March alone, as organisations prepared for life after lockdown.

Due to the sudden halt in recruitment last year - and also, the unforeseen shut down of some businesses - many finance professionals found themselves looking for work for the first time in years. Towards the end of last year, it was evident that the number of accountancy focused roles had shown a sharp decrease. For example, in August 2020, a trainee accountant role on CV-Library received a staggering 3,272 applicants - a stark contrast to the handful of responses such roles receive. This highlights that those who held those roles at the time are now either working elsewhere, or still looking.

This new wave of talent in the finance sector goes perfectly hand in hand with the increase in jobs being advertised across the country. A “war for talent” is taking place in all major cities throughout the UK, particularly in Manchester, London, Liverpool, Leeds and Birmingham. A range of finance departments across a number of organisations are currently on hiring sprees in order to rebuild their businesses at every level, following the difficulties faced in 2020.

What’s Next for Finance & Accountancy Recruitment?

It’s safe to say that recruitment for finance roles are definitely on the up, and hiring managers are keen to be put in touch with the top talent before anyone else now that their recruitment budgets have been reinstated. It’s common knowledge that across all industries roles such as Finance Directors, Financial Controllers and accountancy positions are vital to managing cash flow and maximising assets at hand, which is sure to be top of the business agenda for most organisations currently.

Attracting the most in-demand candidates may seem like fighting a losing battle for some companies recruiting for the same roles as every other finance department in the country. However, there are a number of ways to ensure your business stands out from the rest in regards to targeting the talent you need:

  1. Be an employer of choice - candidates want to know that their benefits are good, they have the option to work flexibly or remotely, and that their employer will take care of them. Demonstrate on your website and during the interview process why they should want to work for you.

  2. Pay the right salary - it may seem daunting to offer a higher salary than you’d originally planned, but if a candidate has more than one job offer and they’re the perfect fit for your company, it’s worth the investment.

  3. Be active on social media - you don’t need to tweet every five minutes, but companies wanting to attract the most in-demand candidates need to be seen as approachable and accessible. Write occasional blogs or do a couple of videos a month about roles you’re recruiting for, and share them on LinkedIn.

  4. Monitor your competitors - where are they advertising their jobs? What kind of benefits are they offering? Are they working with financial recruitment specialists? Whatever your competitors are doing, keep an eye out to see if you’re missing anything you should be on top of, too.

How Do I Know Who is Available?

The best way to access and leverage the skills that candidates are currently showing is to get your name out there. Speaking to recruitment specialists in the finance sector is a great place to start, given that they are actively involved with candidates at all levels that are available in the market right now. 

Also, it’s always beneficial to put an announcement on LinkedIn that your business will be hiring again soon. Even if you announce it without any job titles or salaries specified, if you ask your employees and recruitment partner to share your update, you’ll soon see who is immediately available, and who also could possibly be interested.

Get in touch

Keep an eye out for our next blog where we’ll be discussing the similar wave in talent in the UK tech sector.
If your business is currently recruiting and you need help finding the best talent in the finance sector, get in touch with WSH Recruitment for specialist services.

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