Survey Finds Inquiries About Work/Life Balance More Common During Job Interviews

MENLO PARK, CA -- More accountants today are taking time during the job interview to inquire about work/life balance options, and businesses are responding accordingly. In a recent survey, 57 percent of chief financial officers (CFOs) said job candidates are more likely to ask about work/life balance programs when meeting with prospective employers than they were five years ago, and 68 percent of financial executives reported offering accounting staff some form of alternative scheduling arrangements.

The survey was developed by Robert Half Finance & Accounting, the world’s first and largest specialized financial recruitment service. It was conducted by an independent research firm and is based on interviews with more than 1,400 CFOs from a stratified random sample of U.S. companies with 20 or more employees.

CFOs were asked, “When interviewing job candidates today, are they more or less likely to inquire about work/life balance programs than five years ago?” Their responses:

More likely ……………………………… 57%

No change 11%

Less likely 26%

Don’t know/no answer 6%


CFOs also were asked to identify which, if any, scheduling options they offer their accounting staff. The most common were flexible hours, cited by 51 percent of respondents, part-time work (27 percent) and job-sharing arrangements (20 percent).

“As recently as five years ago, it was not as common for job candidates to inquire about flexible scheduling options or other alternative work arrangements during interviews,” said Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of Robert Half and author of Human Resources Kit For Dummies®, 2nd Edition (John Wiley & Sons, Inc.). “But today employers anticipate these requests and are designing programs to accommodate them where possible.”

Messmer pointed out that while policies must be equitable, a “one-size-fits-all” approach is not always practical because different jobs have different levels of inherent flexibility. “Telecommuting, for example, is often best-suited for professionals who can work autonomously and do not need to be on hand to directly supervise other team members or meet with clients or customers.”

Founded in 1948, Robert Half Finance & Accounting, a division of Robert Half, has more than 350 locations throughout North America, South America, Europe and the Asia-Pacific region, and offers online job search services at www.roberthalf.com.

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