Growing skills gap emerging in finance functions

by Richard Crump

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23 Aug 2012

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FINANCE DIRECTORS risk losing talented accountants because of a perceived deficiency in the commercial skills vital to career progression.

A study of more than 500 finance professionals by recruitment consultants Badenoch & Clark found that nearly half of all accountants and finance professionals believe they need greater exposure to wider commercial decisions and leadership skills.

According to the study, there is a growing skills gap emerging in finance functions as organisations fail to appreciate the importance of providing opportunities to develop a broader set of business skills.

"Many organisations are giving little thought to exposing their finance professionals to scenarios that will give them the skills to succeed and are spending time and money on retention and attraction strategies that no longer work," said Peter Howarth, operational director for accounting and finance at Badenoch & Clark.

Other findings included that eight in ten finance professionals plan to quit their current role in the next 12 months, while 80% of accounting and finance organisations believe their retention strategy is sound and remains successful.

"The finding that eight out of ten finance professionals are planning to quit their role over the next 12 months is shocking and a cause for concern for organisation's retention policies," said Howarth.

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