3 Accounting and Finance Compensation Trends for 2015

Accounting and Finance Compensation Trends

To attract and retain talented professionals, companies will need to be prepared to up their compensation packages. According to the 2015 Salary Guide from Robert Half, accounting and finance salaries are expected to increase an average of 3.5 percent this year, with even larger jumps for in-demand positions.

Following are three trends shaping the financial compensation outlook this year.

1. Demand and heightened competition driving salary increases

Business growth, technology advancements and regulatory compliance issues are fueling demand for talented accounting and finance professionals. Competition for skilled staff has intensified accordingly, leading to higher salary offers, including significant increases for top candidates.

Exacerbating the issue for employers are persistent talent shortages and recruiting difficulties. If they don't offer attractive salaries in this environment, hiring managers risk losing their favored applicants to other opportunities.

Separate research predicts a continued strong outlook. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics’ Occupational Outlook Handbook projects employment growth for accountants and auditors and for financial analysts will exceed the national average through 2022.

2. Compensation affecting retention

Companies are recognizing increasing pay isn’t just key to attracting new staff. It’s also key to retaining top performers already on board.

Robert Half research showed just how important compensation is to retentionChief financial officers and workers agreed inadequate salary and benefits is the main reason good employees quit. (This is a change from previous surveys, when poor compensation wasn't cited among the top responses.)

3. Nonfinancial incentives gaining increased attention

Work/life balance, professional development and flexible work arrangements also serve as powerful motivators for practitioners considering whether to join or stay with a firm. Many employers have responded by stepping up their offerings in nonfinancial areas to attract and retain top performers.

What are the predominant compensation trends you’re seeing?

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