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Treasury Strategy & Transformation
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Perspectives – Deborah Thomas – Michael Page Executive

Michael Page Executive

In the first article in this series, we talk to Deborah Thomas, responsible for senior financial executive recruitment at Michael Page. We ask her the current state of the treasury market and in a competitive environment, how treasury professionals who are serious about moving to the next stage in their career can distinguish themselves against other candidates.

How would you characterise today’s treasury employment market?

Over the past two years or so, the top end of the market - Group Treasurers, Directors of Tax and Treasury positions - has got tighter. Treasurers tend to stay in their position for some time as there is not always an obvious next career move, leaving fewer opportunities for their deputies. Also, with more merger and acquisition activity, departments end up downsizing and it is the upper positions which tend to be the ones to go. In some cases, treasury departments are being relocated overseas, particularly as a result of M&A, so when a treasurer leaves, there is no vacancy left behind.

It is important to look at ways in which you and your treasury department can become more involved in the wider business.

Consequently, the market for senior treasury positions is highly competitive. Although there were a number of senior appointments made during the fourth quarter of 2007, there was strong competition for these positions. It is slightly easier for Deputy Treasurer and Assistant Treasurer/manager roles, as there is higher staff turnover; furthermore, in some areas of treasury, such as treasury accounting, particularly IAS 39, there is still a shortage of skills. But in an employer’s market, treasury professionals need to distinguish their talents and their experience from other candidates.