Talent management 'inconsistent', says ACCA

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Finance departments are not making the most of their staff, according to a global survey by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). 

Recruitment, training and career development in finance departments, including shared services, is “patchy and inconsistent”, the survey of 1,200 organisations found.

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About Nick Huber

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I’m a specialist business journalist and have a particular interest in tax and technology. 


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03rd Oct 2012 14:33

Not surprising at all

As an accountant who has worked in practice and in industry I can honestly say that I'm not surprised in the least by the findings of the ACCA survey.

Most businesses view Finance personnel as just pure overhead - It goes like this; if you're not directly responsible for bringing in sales then you are unable to justify the business spending any more than the bare minimum on you. This means that functions such as Sales and Marketing will get all the personal development and good conditions/salaries. IT and HR will follow very closely behind (well, their work is more tangible than that of a Finance person,isn't it!) and that leaves Finance to bring up the distant rear.

Over recent years we have seen increasingly more use of (non-UK, and therefore supposedly cheaper) shared service centres, all contributing to lower budgets for UK Finance teams to recruit, train and develop their key talent. Of course, the current economic climate is not helping things either as belts are being tightened further still.

In many ways it's down to the misguided belief that one accountant is just as good as another. No account is taken of technical/commercial expertise or those ever-so-hard-to-acquire softer skills. If a good Finance professional wants to leave the business due to lack of support from their employer then the employer will just get another (cheaper) one to replace them. Or better still just lump their work onto some other bod. Simple!

Thanks (2)