Extended Vacancy: On Average, CFOs Take Four Weeks to Fill Finance Positions

May 24, 2016

Finding talented employees for finance and accounting takes time.

Toronto, ON -- Imagine being without a valuable employee for a month. That’s the situation accounting and finance departments typically find themselves in when a member of the team moves on. According to a new survey from Robert Half Finance & Accounting, Canadian CFOs said it takes four weeks, on average, to fill an open staff-level accounting or finance position and six weeks to hire for a management-level role.   


“Considering the talent shortage in today’s hiring market for finance and accounting professionals, a drawn-out hiring process can prove detrimental for companies hoping to lock in the most skilled candidates,” said Greg Scileppi, president of Robert Half, International Staffing Operations. “Properly vetting potential employees remains essential, but hiring managers should be prepared to accelerate the hiring process in order to ensure talented candidates aren’t lost to more decisive and competitive offers elsewhere.”

Scileppi added, “Professionals with specialized finance and accounting designations are in particularly high demand, and companies must be especially diligent in extending job offers to these candidates.”


CFOs were asked, “On average, how many weeks does it typically take to hire for an open staff-level accounting or finance position?” The mean response was four weeks.


CFOs were also asked, “On average, how many weeks does it typically take to hire for an open management-level accounting or finance position?” The mean response was six weeks.


Robert Half Finance & Accounting offers five tips to help managers accelerate their hiring process:

  1. Move quickly. Develop an action plan that begins with creating a short list of potential hires and benchmarks for each step of the hiring process. The goal should be to carefully assess candidates, yet move swiftly toward extending an offer.
  2. Update your finance job description. Provide a clear summary of the skill sets you need, including technical and interpersonal abilities. A good description gives candidates a solid statement of your performance expectations.
  3. Solicit input. Enlist your top team members in updating the list of responsibilities, duties, and requirements of the job and with evaluating finalists. While the final decision is yours to make, key staff members can help prevent making the wrong choice and wasting valuable time and resources.
  4. Help your company stand out. Get creative in promoting your organization’s unique corporate culture, growth opportunities and benefits. Ensure the compensation you’re offering is in line with competing employers by comparing it against data in the Robert Half Salary Guide for Accounting and Finance.
  5. Work with a recruiting firm. Staffing professionals interact with hiring managers and job seekers every day and understand current employment trends. By tapping their extensive network, you may meet in-demand candidates you couldn’t find on your own.


About the Research

The survey was developed by Robert Half Finance & Accounting. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on telephone interviews with more than 270 CFOs from a stratified random sample of companies in Canada.

About Robert Half
Founded in 1948, Robert Half is the world’s first and largest specialized staffing firm. The Menlo Park, Calif.-based company has more than 325 staffing locations worldwide and offers online job search and management tools at roberthalf.ca. For career and management advice, follow our blog at blog.roberthalf.ca. Follow Robert Half on Twitter at @RobertHalf_CAN for additional workplace advice and hiring trends.

For further information contact: Naz Araghian, (416) 865-2140, [email protected]