The future role of financial leaders in recruitment

9th Apr 2020
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Currently worth over £35bn to the UK economy, the recruitment industry has shown an ability to adapt where other industries have struggled. However, keeping this part of the economy thriving will require foresight, preparation and innovation. While the recruitment industry is flourishing, it is still subject to a fast-paced, ever-changing world that shows no sign of slowing down in 2020. Changing work cultures, new regulations and technological advances are just some of the things presenting challenges and opportunities to businesses and finance leaders this year.

So, what does the future have in store for your recruitment organisation? Make sure you’re one step ahead — read on for what you need to prepare for, as well as advice for how you can make 2020 your best year yet.

Intelligence technologies

Artificial intelligence (AI) is one of the most prevalent and significant technological changes currently disrupting the business world. Sectors across the economy are beginning to seriously consider how they can harness AI to make their businesses smarter and more efficient — if they haven’t already implemented these technologies, that is. Recruitment is no exception. A recent study conducted by recruitment agency Robert Half found that 53%of CEOs in the UK are concerned about lacking digital skills in their workforce, which will be essential for businesses to evolve and adapt to digitisation, automation and AI. Therefore, businesses will need to search out talent with the necessary skills to ensure future success and the new technological revolution takes over.

Finance leaders and accounting departments are now being called upon more and more to support digitisation in alignment with the new technologies, which includes such processes as implementing company-wide systems and software, as well as introducing, supporting and working with outsourced functions, in addition to interpreting and analysing huge amounts of data to support business strategies and growth. With the help of AI all of this can be streamlined — and when you add to the fact that AI and smart machine learning can also sift through fast amounts of data during the recruitment process, AI looks set to become the norm for finding the best talent in the accounting sector.

Faster payments

One exciting technological development to keep an eye out for is the use of blockchain to facilitate secure, real-time payments. This means freedom from delayed 30-day payments and the ability to invoice clients and settle them immediately on a day-to-day basis.

The significance of this development is huge for recruitment businesses. For a start, cash flow can be improved considerably, allowing for capital to be freed and used for development and growth. Equally, being able to pay your contractors daily will make you a more attractive prospect for new candidates – as well as boosting the performance of your current talent!

Blockchain technology carries other advantages as well, including heightened data security. Make sure your business is making the most of this straightforward, but financially lucrative, opportunity and start making a case for investing in it.

Culture and diversity

Workplaces are set to continue to change, both in terms of working culture and employee makeup. Nine-to-five office jobs are quickly becoming recognised for what they are — a constraint on staff wellbeing and productivity. Recruitment organisations should be keeping a close eye on changing ways of working that are being adopted across the industry. They should strive to be bold in their own adoption of a modern work culture. Flexible working hours and locations mean happier staff who are more productive, more efficient and more likely to stay loyal to the company.

Diversity and equal opportunities are an increasing priority for workplaces. Ensuring that women and minorities are represented in the workforce is not just a social justice issue but also financially beneficial for businesses. Recent analysis from McKinsey & Company indicated that increased diversity corresponded with improved financial performance — up to 33% — across different indicators, including profitability and long-term value creation. The recruitment agencies who are ahead of the game, with a clear strategy to attract diverse talent to their organisations, will be those reaping the cultural and financial rewards.

Out with the old, in with the new

Growing your recruitment organisation in 2020 will be dependent on becoming fully focused on the future. The business landscape is changing quickly, and you must be ready to take advantage of the opportunities that are out there.

For a strong financial performance in 2020, make sure you’re investing in the latest software and technology — they will more than pay for themselves in the long run. Be bold and adventurous when it comes to recruiting your own talent and aim to create a vibrant, modern working culture. Your employees and your bottom line will thank you for it!