Canadian Treasurer

December 19, 2011

CFOs expect financial hiring to increase in first quarter

TORONTO-- Looking toward the new year, chief financial officers (CFOs) expect the financial hiring outlook to improve in the first quarter. Ten per cent of executives interviewed for the Robert Half Financial Hiring Index said they plan to add full-time accounting and finance employees, while only one per cent forecast staff decreases. The resulting net 9 per cent increase is up one point from the fourth-quarter survey.

As hiring plans may be gaining traction, companies are also increasingly optimistic about the overall outlook for their companies. Ninety-one per cent of executives expressed at least some confidence in their firms' growth potential, up from 89 per cent in the fourth quarter.

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 specializing in accounting and finance.

"Companies are hiring staff who can help make their organisations more efficient and profitable in the new year," said Kathryn Bolt, Canadian president of Robert Half. "In high-demand specialties, such as areas within accounting and finance, skilled professionals are now becoming increasingly comfortable with exploring new roles at other firms."

View the research highlights.

Accounting and Finance Hiring -- By Industry

Executives in the business services and finance, insurance and real estate sectors anticipate the most hiring activity in the first quarter, according to the survey. A net 21 per cent and 20 per cent of CFOs said they plan to add staff, respectively.

About the Robert Half Financial Hiring Index

First published in 1992, the Robert Half Financial Hiring Index was conducted by an independent research firm and is 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.

The Financial Hiring Index is conducted as part of the Robert Half Professional Employment Report, which tracks hiring trends among professional occupations. More information about the Professional Employment Report is available at




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