What Type of Consultant Salary Can You Expect?

By Robert Half September 30, 2019 at 11:08am

Are you considering a career as a financial consultant? Leaving a full-time position isn’t an easy decision. However, senior-level consulting offers many benefits, including a consultant salary that can match or exceed that of a similar full-time position.

Organizations frequently rely on interim professionals and consultants to supplement in-house staff during busy periods, fill gaps caused by employee turnover, evaluate workers for potential full-time hires, and spearhead strategic financial initiatives for projects such as systems conversions. And research by our company shows that 90% of CFOs find the consulting path appealing — with nearly half (47%) saying they view consulting as a very attractive career option.

See an infographic featuring the findings from the recent Robert Half Management Resources survey of CFOs at U.S. companies here.

Cash in on your skills

As an in-demand, specialized interim professional, you can expect to earn a competitive consultant salary, especially if you work with a specialized staffing agency like Robert Half Management Resources. Salaries for skilled accounting and business consultants are on the rise. This is especially true for senior-level finance professionals experienced in risk, compliance and technical accounting, or with expertise in reporting, financial analysis and internal auditing.

Business systems consultants, such as senior business systems analysts, are also highly sought, as many organizations look to maximize efficiencies while monitoring costs. Many of these businesses seek to hire consultants with a financial or accounting background and expertise in enterprise resource planning (ERP) packages and corresponding software and applications.

For advanced-level accounting, finance and business systems roles, a master’s degree in business administration often goes hand-in-hand with a higher pay rate.

Know what to expect

Below is a list of midpoint salaries for several types of senior-level accounting and finance positions in the United States. More detailed information is featured in the 2020 Robert Half Salary Guide for Accounting and Finance Professionals. (Note: Additional experience and in-demand certifications typically boost the amount of compensation for a senior-level consultant.)

  • Chief financial officer: $202,750
  • Vice president of finance: $185,750
  • Director of finance: $152,250
  • Corporate controller: $177,750
  • IT auditor: $95,500
  • Budget analyst: $84,000
  • Business analyst: $91,500
  • Business intelligence analyst: $97,000
  • Business systems analyst: $96,000
  • Financial analyst: $85,500
  • Financial reporting: $84,500
  • General accountant: $80,500
  • Cost accountant: $81,250
  • Tax accountant: $90,250

Your consultant salary will correlate to the size of the organization you work with, as well as your overall experience, certifications and graduate degrees. You can use the Robert Half Salary Calculator to refine the salary ranges for your local area and specific type of position.

With organizations looking to hire highly skilled, senior-level consultants to help support key initiatives, it’s a good time to consider launching a consulting career. Whether you decide to pursue the consulting path on your own or work through a specialized staffing firm, you’ll likely find opportunities to earn just as much as — and perhaps, even more — than you would in a full-time position.

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