Construction Industry Projected To See Growth, Survey Shows

MENLO PARK, CA -- Chief financial officers (CFOs) anticipate increased hiring activity in accounting and finance in the third quarter, according to the Robert Half Financial Hiring Index.  Seven percent of executives polled plan to bring in full-time employees and
3 percent anticipate reductions in personnel.  The net 4 percent increase is up three points from the second-quarter forecast.


Forty-three percent of CFOs who expect to add to their accounting and finance teams said business growth is the primary factor driving the demand; 24 percent of respondents attributed the need for more staff to rising workloads.


The national poll includes responses from more than 1,400 CFOs from a stratified random sample of U.S. companies with 20 or more employees.  It was conducted by an independent research firm and developed by Robert Half, the world’s largest staffing services firm specializing in accounting, finance and information technology.  Robert Half has been tracking financial hiring activity in the United States since 1992.

“Companies are expanding and moving forward with new projects,” said Max Messmer, chairman and CEO of Robert Half.  “As a result, firms are seeking accounting personnel -- in particular, staff and senior accountants -- to support growth initiatives.”


Messmer added, “The rising demand has led to competition for top talent, and, in many cases, employers are expediting their hiring processes to avoid losing strong candidates to other career opportunities.”


Accounting and Financial Hiring -- By Region

Hiring is projected to be the strongest in the Pacific[1] and West South Central[2] states.  A net
7 percent of CFOs in each of these regions expect to add accounting and finance staff in the coming quarter.


“As hiring picks up in the Pacific states, there is a premium on experienced accounting and finance personnel,” said Messmer.  “For many financial executives, corporate governance compliance is driving the need for additional employees.  Demand is especially high for individuals who possess U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission-reporting experience.


“Led by the energy and manufacturing sectors, hiring in the West South Central region has accelerated,” added Messmer.  “The labor market has tightened in many cities, and experienced professionals often receive multiple employment offers.”


Robert Half has conducted additional CFO interviews in major metropolitan areas to provide more detailed analyses of financial hiring trends in these markets.  The local results are available at


Accounting and Financial Hiring -- By Industry

Among industries, executives in construction are most optimistic about their hiring plans. 
Nineteen percent of CFOs in this sector anticipate hiring full-time accounting and finance employees in the third quarter and none expects to reduce personnel levels. 

Hiring activity in finance, insurance and real estate is expected to outpace the national projection as well; a net 8 percent of respondents from this sector plan to expand their teams.  Retail also is forecast to see above-average gains, with a net 7 percent of executives anticipating bringing in additional staff during the quarter.


Robert Half was founded in 1948 and is traded on the New York Stock Exchange.  Its financial staffing divisions include Robert Half® Finance & Accounting, Accountemps® and Robert Half® Management Resources, for full-time, temporary and senior-level project professionals, respectively.  The company has more than 330 offices throughout North America, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand, and offers online job search services on its divisional websites, all of which can be accessed at



[1] Alaska, California, Hawaii, Oregon, Washington

[2] Arkansas, Louisiana, Oklahoma, Texas

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