Finance Transformation Recruiting Trends 2024

Posting date: 27 Feb 2024

External market forces have compelled businesses to re-evaluate their strategies, striving for heightened operational efficiency and innovative approaches. This shift in focus has spurred a notable rise in Finance Transformation programmes, seeking specialised talent to spearhead the modernisation of processes and systems.

Conversations with C-Suite executives and business leaders reveal a strategic pivot beyond mere cost-saving endeavors. To stay competitive, organisations are now directing their attention toward the fundamental transformation of processes and systems, with a forward-looking perspective.

An integral part of this paradigm shift includes the adoption of purpose-built ERPs and EPMs, replacing outdated systems to bolster business growth. As we navigate through 2024, the landscape will continue to evolve with a focus on sustainable transformations and technological advancements. 

In this blog, I will pick out the most in-demand Finance Transformation skills and roles in 2024.

ERP Programme Leads


The perception of Enterprise Resource Planning (ERP) has evolved beyond being a magical 'fix' for organisational issues; instead, ERPs are now regarded as drivers for automation, improvement, and centralisation across entities and divisions grappling with complex processes and legacy systems.

The demand for SAP S4 Hana specialists has surged as organisations embark on upgrading their SAP systems from legacy versions. Additionally, there is a noticeable uptick in the implementation of ERPs like NetSuite or D365, perceived as more scalable and cost-effective solutions. However, some of these programmes faced delays last year, a cost-saving measure that we anticipate will continue in 2024.


Sponsors overseeing existing programmes are adopting a more discerning approach to recruiting transformation expertise, often preferring to bring in Programme Directors or ERP Implementation leaders on a permanent or fixed-term contract basis. This choice is rooted in the belief that such arrangements foster a stronger sense of belonging and help integrate ERP leaders into the business for the long-term. While this aligns with sound cultural logic, it's crucial to ensure that it doesn't compromise the individual's capacity to provide honest and independent advice.


Despite this trend, the talent pool still leans heavily towards day-rate contracts rather than fixed-term or permanent roles, with ERP Programme Directors commanding rates well over £1,000 plus per day. To attract and retain these professionals on a permanent or fixed-term basis, companies must offer competitive salaries and packages.


An advantage of hiring a Programme Director with extensive interim experience is their exposure to multiple assignments across diverse companies, cultures, and technical landscapes. These seasoned professionals bring valuable insights that help mitigate potential pitfalls and inform better decision-making.



Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) System Experts


Beyond ERP, there has been notable growth in Enterprise Performance Management (EPM) programmes in the past year. C-Suite Finance Executives are expressing a strong inclination towards enhancing performance reporting to improve forecasting and consolidations.


The pursuit of refined Management Information (MI) and Business Intelligence (BI) remains a persistent priority for finance leaders, aiming to elevate levels of insight and contribute to well-informed decision-making. Consequently, there has been a noticeable surge in the demand for Finance Transformation specialists possessing analytical and business partnering skills, coupled with expertise in EPM/MI reporting tools like Tagetik, OneStream, and Anaplan.


In the realm of Financial Planning and Analysis (FP&A), programmes are becoming increasingly prevalent among mid to large-scale businesses with international or global implementations. This has led to a substantial demand for interim specialists, particularly for projects spanning an 8 to 12-month duration.


Corporate Finance, M&A Experts, Project Managers of Acquisitions/Integrations/Transitions


Despite a decrease in Private Equity (PE) acquisitions throughout 2023, there remains strong demand for Finance Transformation specialists. Various sectors have witnessed ongoing M&A activities as organisations actively pursue growth through acquisitions.


Consequently, there is a sustained need for expertise in due diligence, financial modeling, and the post-merger integration of finance processes and systems.


Some PE firms are restructuring their portfolios, leading to an increased demand for individuals with experience in carve-outs and the extraction of finance systems from the parent company.


With several M&A activities slated for completion in 2024, we anticipate a pivotal role for professionals with these specialised skills in the coming year.


Target Operating Model (TOM)


Irrespective of industry sector or organisational size, the surge in remote working and shifts in consumer behavior have compelled businesses to reassess their strategy and operating models for survival, growth and success.


In many instances, a shift in business strategy necessitates a corresponding adjustment in the Target Operating Model (TOM), accompanied by Organisational Design and Development (OD&D) initiatives to effectively implement that strategy.


From startups to FTSE100s, organisations across the spectrum are actively seeking efficiencies within their Finance functions. For larger enterprises, this often entails centralising or the merging of Finance functions.


In 2023, a significant number of organisations opted to defer their system-related challenges, prioritising TOM design initiatives instead. The establishment of new offshoring models to streamline costs across organisations has been a prevalent trend.


Consequently, there has been a noticeable rise in demand for TOM design professionals, particularly those with experience in collaborating with large Business Process Outsourcing (BPO) providers and overseeing the global transition of processes and roles.



Download Our Salary Guide


Finance Transformation candidates and the employers hiring them always ask for our advice when it comes to compensation. With deep specialism and market knowledge across different industry sectors, we are in a strong position to provide day-rate, FTC and permanent salary guidance, for different Finance Transformation roles, across the UK.

Download you copy of our salary guide and discover complete coverage of all the key job roles and rates, which you can use as a benchmarking tool to ensure you offer the right level of compensation to compete in the marketplace. 

We look forward to continuing this conversation with you and supporting you with your professional career or hiring needs.