Finance Hiring to Increase in Q4 2010

September 14, 2010 ( - Hiring in accounting and finance is expected to increase slightly in the fourth quarter, according to the Robert Half Financial Hiring Index.

Eight percent of chief financial officers (CFOs) interviewed said they plan to hire full-time accounting and finance employees during the fourth quarter, while 7% expect staff reductions. The net 1% increase in hiring activity is the first net increase since the first quarter of 2009, Robert Half said in a press release.   

Most CFOs, 84%, expect no changes to their personnel levels.   

Business confidence is strong among respondents, according to the press release. A majority (86%) of executives interviewed are at least somewhat optimistic about the outlook for their businesses, including 39% who are very confident.   

CFOs in both the manufacturing and wholesale sectors are optimistic about their hiring plans for the fourth quarter, with a net 4% of executives in each industry forecasting increases in personnel levels. Thirteen percent of manufacturing respondents anticipate expanding their teams, and 9% expect staff reductions. In the wholesale sector, 9% of CFOs surveyed plan staff additions, while 5% said they will decrease headcount.  

The West South Central states are projected to see the most active hiring in the fourth quarter, with a net 6% of CFOs in the region expecting to add full-time accounting and finance employees. The Pacific states also are expected to see above-average hiring activity, with a net 5% of CFOs in the region expecting to add personnel.  

The Robert Half Financial Hiring Index is based on telephone interviews with more than 1,400 CFOs across the United States.