New research shows that 18% of finance departments are comprised of non-permanent employees.

Nearly two thirds (63%) of Chief Finance Officers (CFOs) plan to add temporary and/or interim staff to their finance teams in 2012, according to new research from Robert Half UK.

Despite changing working practices such as the Agency Workers’ Regulation (AWR), UK businesses consider specialist interim staff an essential way to support the current skills shortage, which otherwise could potentially affect their ability to grow. London-based companies in particular are taking full advantage of the talent and expertise temporary staff can offer, with four in five (80%) CFOs planning to increase their teams next year.

Phil Sheridan, Managing Director, Robert Half UK said: “With the challenging business environment and continued global economic uncertainty, some hiring managers are taking advantage of the knowledge and skills that temporary and interim staff can bring to a company’s bottom line. By continuing to capitalise on the readily available and highly specialist temporary market, businesses can adjust more easily and quickly to workload variations, and bring in functional experts with the required experiences to manage strategic initiatives.”

Temporary and interim employees make up a sizable portion of the overall financial workforce, with 18% of a company’s finance and accounting department, on average, comprised of non-permanent employees. This increases to 28% for large companies and 25% for UK PLCs.

Phil Sheridan concludes: “Increasingly, highly specialist professionals, in areas such as accountancy and finance, are choosing interim employment for the flexibility, variety and career progression that it affords. While once considered a bridge to permanent employment, interim opportunities can provide exciting careers in high-growth areas such as regulatory reporting and management accounting, playing an integral role in a company’s strategic direction and growth.”