Last updated on April 19, 2014 at 1:20 EDT

St. Louis CFOs Report Fourth-Quarter Hiring Plans

September 16, 2013

Survey Finds Most Companies Optimistic About Business Growth During Quarter

ST. LOUIS, Sept. 16, 2013 /PRNewswire/ — Eight percent of chief financial officers (CFOs) in the St. Louis area expect to add new professional-level positions in the fourth quarter, according to the St. Louis Professional Employment Forecast from Robert Half. Fifteen percent of respondents will not be hiring, even to fill an open position, and 6 percent plan to reduce staff levels. Another 70 percent said they will hire for roles that open during the next three months.

Most executives are optimistic about their business prospects for the fourth quarter. Nearly nine in 10 (88 percent) CFOs expressed confidence in their companies’ growth potential for the quarter, with one-third (36 percent) of respondents saying they are very confident.

The survey suggests, however, that organizations looking to expand and add staff may face difficulties. The majority of CFOs surveyed, 57 percent, said it is at least somewhat challenging to find skilled candidates for professional-level positions today.

“We are seeing demand for temporary workers to supplement existing work teams in anticipation of year-end business needs,” said Melinda Alison, regional vice president for Robert Half in St. Louis. “As industries such as healthcare, logistics and distribution, financial services, and manufacturing continue to drive local economic growth locally, employers in these sectors are seeking highly skilled project professionals to meet their shifting needs.”

The Professional Employment Forecast was developed by Robert Half, the world’s first and largest specialized staffing firm, and conducted by an independent research firm. The local results reflect a two-quarter rolling average based on interviews with 200 CFOs from a stratified random sample of companies in the St. Louis area with 20 or more employees.

CFOs were asked, “What are your company’s hiring plans for full-time professional-level employees in the fourth quarter?” Their responses:

                                      Fourth Quarter      Third Quarter
                                      --------------      -------------

    Expanding - adding new
     positions                                         8%                10%

    Maintaining - only filling
     vacated positions                                70%                67%

    Freezing - not filling
     vacated positions or                             15%                17%
      creating new ones

    Reducing - eliminating
     positions                                         6%                 6%

    Don't know/no answer                               1%                 1%
                                                     ---                ---

                                                     100%             101%*

    *Responses do not total 100 percent due to rounding.

Founded in 1948, Robert Half is the world’s first and largest specialized staffing firm. Find more information at www.roberthalf.com.

Note to editors: To speak with a local expert on employment trends in the St. Louis area, please contact Meghan Lockhart at (206) 749-0960.

SOURCE Robert Half

Source: PR Newswire