The phrase “war for talent” was coined by McKinsey & Co. in the late 1990s to describe an environment where competition among employers for skilled workers was becoming more intense as the workforce began aging and employees exhibited less loyalty to the companies they worked for.
This so-called war has only intensified since then. The demographic and societal trends that started more than two decades ago have continued with baby boomers starting to retire in droves and highly skilled employees hopping from job to job as new opportunities arise. COVID-19 has also played a large role in the upheaval of the workforce as both businesses and employees adjust to new ways of working due to the pandemic.
In fact, one out of every four employees say they plan to change jobs once the pandemic subsides, according to the Pulse of the American Worker Survey conducted last spring by Prudential.
Challenges in Accounting and Finance
The war for talent can be even more intense in the finance and accounting industry. Highly skilled finance and accounting employees can often pick and choose from among the best jobs, which makes it hard for corporations and CFOs to build and maintain a stable finance and accounting staff.
The good news is that building such a staff isn’t always necessary anymore. Instead, businesses can utilize Finance as a Service, or FaaS, to meet their finance and accounting requirements. With FaaS, the finance and accounting back-office duties are outsourced to a third-party service provider. This relieves the CEO or CFO of the difficult, expensive and time-consuming job of hiring and retaining a full-time finance and accounting staff.
FaaS: A Comprehensive Approach to the Finance Function
Finance as a Service is sometimes confused with the services provided by outsourced accounting firms. However, FaaS offers a much more comprehensive approach to financial and accounting management than simple outsourced accounting, along with greater transparency and rigor.
First, FaaS provides a full suite of staff, services and software that’s capable of managing a corporation’s entire finance and accounting operations. This includes processing transactions and customer payments, paying vendors and producing monthly financials. In other words, FaaS is a one-stop financial and accounting services shop.
FaaS also offers a single, self-serve software interface instead of multiple programs that corporations have to manage themselves. This interface should provide clarity and transparency with regard to financial and accounting information. With FaaS, knowledge isn’t concentrated with a single individual who is the only one who can access relevant financial and accounting data. Instead, this data can be easily accessed by anyone on the team when needed. With a single, self-service interface, more than one person can get that system to meet their needs on any given day.
In addition, FaaS features flexible and transparent pricing which makes it easy to forecast what costs will be as the company’s needs change in the future. Practically speaking, this means that a FaaS provider charges based on the service offered, not by the hour or based on the level of staff assigned to the client. This way, corporations know exactly what they’re paying for and how their costs will rise or fall as they scale up or down
Finally, FaaS offers access to skilled finance and accounting professionals who have the appropriate level of expertise for the corporation’s specific needs. While much of financial operations is fairly straightforward, sometimes corporations need a higher level of strategic thinking and expertise, like when performing acquisitions and onboarding new entities, for example. With FaaS, corporations only pay for this higher level of service when it’s needed.
FaaS Service Brings Everything Together
In the end, Finance as a Service comes down to one word: service. This is what brings together the comprehensive offering, single self-serve interface, pricing transparency and customized level of expertise. A true FaaS provider will offer this kind of comprehensive approach to managing the finance and accounting function.
As a CEO, now would be a good time to think about how adopting Finance as a Service could help you win the war for talent. To discuss the potential benefits of FaaS for your business in more detail, please connect with us here.
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