Welcome back to work! After a very patchy 2014, we are all hoping that 2015 is a little easier and more consistent. Having now worked in the recruitment sector for over 25 years, I have certainly seen the overall job market a lot worse (particularly in 1989 – 1992), but I don't remember the highs and lows being as marked as they have been over the last two years. We have been a global economy for a long time now, and this is both good and bad, with any bad news in the financial markets overseas continuing to impact confidence in our market.
Although we have noticed a drop in salaries over the last twelve months, it has not been marked, and, in my opinion (if it counts for anything!), our salaries are still too high. We are seeing many of our candidates, whether they be admin, accounts clerical or qualified accountants, with inflated views on their worth, particularly those under the $110k level. The only people who consistently say they will consider a drop in salary are the senior end of the market, those between $150k - $300k. Even candidates who are in jobs currently have realised that if they want a new challenge, they will most likely need to take a drop in salary.
Another surprise has been the number of candidates at varying levels who decided to resign before Christmas, mainly because they could not stand their current job any longer, and this was before they found their new job! It seems many people have forgotten how quiet the job market is between December and February. Deliberately resigning without a job to go to, no matter how unhappy you are, signals a bad sign to a potential employer, particularly if you are a qualified accountant. It speaks of impetuous and impulsive behaviour, traits they will not find attractive.
Accountants, after all, are meant to be risk averse! If you have returned to work and are still miserable, feel free to call Chris or Ben for a reality check on 07 3118 0125. An updated CV is always advisable, and we can assist you with that for free!
Where did all the jobs come from in 2014?
A review of the industries we successfully helped last year showed that a large chunk of our work was in the services sector. This included the health, not for profits and aged care sectors. With the Australian dollar dropping to 80 cents, we are expecting we may see a pickup in manufacturing, agribusiness, tourism and any companies offering services to the overseas markets.
The jobs and skills most in demand in the coming year
(source) Corporate governance specialists, cyber-security experts and 'big data' analysts will not be short of job offers in 2015 and beyond. The key factors influencing demand are the ongoing dominance of big data in business, technological advances in security and risk, and the increased rigour demanded globally for corporate governance. 'Businesses are looking for leaders who can not only understand the massive amounts of information available to them, but also identify the threats and opportunities that come as a result of this evolving landscape.'
For the finance professional
Accountants should also be in demand in 2015, with an estimated 18,300 more jobs to be created by 2018, according to the Australian Department of Employment's Employment Outlook to November 2018. But it's not just about crunching the numbers. There's an emerging trend for companies to hire accountants who can use data to project for the future and steer a company in the right direction. 'Accounting and finance professionals who can turn business intelligence into business strategy are in high demand. Business leaders desire professionals who can delve into the numbers and explain their implications for top-line growth,' states CPA Australia.
Skills the finance professional will need
Businesses are seeking technology expertise as more finance departments move from a reporting-focused to an analytics-centric function.
- Big data is a trend impacting businesses of all sizes. Companies want individuals with:
- Advanced Excel skills
- Knowledge of large enterprise resource planning systems
- Expertise in data analytics, advanced modelling techniques and the use of SQL
- Knowledge of business intelligence software such as IBM Cognos and MicroStrategy
- Aptitude with Hyperion (for analyst and financial reporting roles)
- Knowledge of QuickBooks (for positions with small and midsize firms)
The hot roles in 2015
Finance Private equity CFO: With increasingly robust private equity activity underway on a global basis, this niche-oriented, rapid growth position necessitates an ability to make and move quickly on decisions.
Human resources Chief human resources officer: CEOs are now looking for much more out of their HR leader – and frequently from a global perspective. The CHRO of today and tomorrow will be required to act as a trusted adviser and reliable sounding board to the CEO.
Head of people analytics: With the richness of data and analytic tools at hand to CEOs, they are now demanding deeper and more meaningful information about human capital and increasingly factoring it into their decision-making.