Accounting Professionals Optimistic On Economy, Job Security

BOSTON -- When it comes to job security and their outlook on the nation's economy, most finance and accounting professionals remain optimistic, according to The Mergis Group Finance and Accounting Employee Confidence Index, which declined marginally by 0.8 points to 62.3. The Index, which measures overall confidence among finance and accounting workers, continues to be one of the highest confidence levels among all sectors tracked by Randstad, including IT, healthcare, manufacturing, office and administration.

Data was collected July 9-11, August 5-7 and September 9-11, 2013, and thus do not reflect the attitudes of employees during the government shutdown.

Despite the high level of overall confidence, finance and accounting workers showed lower levels of optimism in the strength of the economy, with nearly a quarter of respondents (22%) saying they believe the economy is getting weaker. Additionally, employees reported slightly lower confidence in the future of their current employer.

The study, conducted online by Harris Interactive among 135 accounting and finance workers, also showed that employees were less likely to switch jobs. Nearly a third (31%) responded that they are likely to look for a new job in the next six months, and more than a third (35%) indicated more jobs were available.

"Companies are actively seeking finance and accounting talent within various industries. Looking into 2014, we see sector growth being driven by certain positions, including financial analysts, staff accountants, business analysts and internal auditors/public accountants," said Ursula Williams, EVP of Randstad Finance & Accounting, Randstad Human Resources, Accountants International and The Mergis Group–which will combine to form Randstad Professionals on December 9th.

"Several key aspects of the Index also showed signs of growing confidence, such as the availability of jobs and employees' ability to find new jobs. Workers in the finance and accounting field also continue to report high levels of job security, with 80 percent indicating it is not likely they will lose their job in the next 12 months."

Q3 2013 Survey Highlights: 
Increasing Percentage of Finance and Accounting Workers Believe the Economy is Getting Stronger

  • Forty percent of finance and accounting employees believe the economy is getting stronger, falling two percentage points from the second quarter of 2013. The number of finance and accounting workers who believe the economy is getting weaker rose six percentage points, from 16 percent in Q2 2013 to 22 percent in Q3.

More Finance and Accounting Workers Believe More Jobs are Available

  • More than a third (35%) of finance and accounting employees believe more jobs are available, rising four percentage points from the previous quarter.  

Rising Confidence in Ability to Find New Jobs

  • Nearly half (49%) of finance and accounting workers are confident in their ability to find a new job, rising seven percentage points from the previous quarter.

Workers Ambivalent About Job Search

  • Nearly a third (31%) of finance and accounting workers say they are likely to look for a new job in the next 12 months, falling seven percentage points from the previous quarter. A majority (59%) say they are not likely to job search, rising three percentage points from the previous quarter. 

This survey was conducted online within the United States by Harris Interactive on behalf of The Mergis Group from July 9-11, August 5-7 and September 9-11, 2013 among 3,163 adults 18 and older, of which 135 are employed in finance and accounting. This online survey is not based on a probability sample and therefore no estimate of theoretical sampling error can be calculated. For complete survey methodology, including weighting variables, please contact lesly.cardec@randstadusa.com.

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