Philip Douglas May 5, 2015 5:00:00 PM 3 min read

How to Find and Keep Good People in the Finance Function

The ability to hire and keep great staff delivers the backbone of every business. The better the people, the better the business.

This is just as important in the back-office function and too many senior finance managers fail to recognize the importance of the quality of the jobs they offer. If the finance department is always under stress from their colleagues, suppliers, and customers, it usually shows up in staff churn.

Each person that leaves simply exacerbates the problem. The workload increases for everyone that remains and if you can’t hire great staff, the problem just rolls on. It lurches from one crisis to the next as people abandon the ship, looking for a better job elsewhere – and finding it.

Finding replacements is equally difficult. If a bright and capable prospective new hire walks into your accounts department, does it reflect their ideal next job?

Consider two job options:

  • A 100% paper-based process, where 75% of all the work is dealing repetitively with paper with little to no value add or learning opportunities. Everything is “invisible” to everyone unless they are holding the relevant piece of paper in their hand and a large chunk of the job is finding a specific piece of paper in the finance department’s “haystack”. From the prospective hire’s perspective, this shows a finance department still living in the dark ages in an environment that is always under stress that has no plans to do anything about it.

  • A zero paper-based process, where 100% of the activities are value add. Budget holders have real-time sight of their budget position, everyone can see every transaction in play, access every historic transaction, and undertake approvals from any connected device 24x7. The job is focused on value add with all the learning opportunities that deliver, working with a team of smart, forward-thinking, and like-minded people.

Which job are you offering? If it is the first one, where are you leading your company?

Perhaps the next hire should be to recruit someone that can help your move to paperless, or is that something you should really do yourself?


Once you are satisfied with your new finance hires, why not have them read our free white paper for our 6 top tips on how finance professionals can tackle the challenges facing spend control in your business. 

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Philip Douglas

Philip Douglas is Chief Executive of Compleat Software. As a chartered accountant, Philip has extensive experience in UK, European and North American accounting. As a technical and application leader working with many leading accounting/ERP software vendors his accounting knowledge molds our products of today. Philip is the driving force behind our culture, products and vision and is the reason Compleat is the disruptive leader in the market.
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