Accounting and Finance: Emerging trends contracting

New Zealand’s accounting and finance contracting market has seen significant changes over the past 12 months.

New trends are emerging that are reshaping the industry.

A shortage of skilled candidates remains across several verticals within the Accounting and Finance space – resulting in a very real imbalance between supply and demand. Employers are competing for talent, and contractors with in-demand skills can command high rates and attractive working conditions.


The talent shortage within the Accounting and Finance market has been well documented over the last 12-24 months and we’ve seen this heightened within the contracting space.

We believe some of the contributing factors include:

  • Lack of international talent coming into New Zealand. The influx of Kiwi returners or immigrating skilled professionals from the UK, Australia and various other countries has always made up a large share of the contracting candidate market.
  • Career contractors joining the permanent workforce. We’ve seen a lot of candidates opt for the security of permanent employment due to the volatility over the last 12-24 months.
  • Reduced turnover of contract roles. Businesses are locking many candidates into longer-term roles, and extensions are occurring more frequently. A lot of our clients have experienced the difficulties of getting strong immediately available talent, so have opted to carry slightly more cost by holding onto talent longer.
  • Temporary to permanent conversions. We’ve seen an incredibly high conversion rate over the last 12 months – contractors being offered permanent roles during, or at the conclusion of their contract assignments.


We’ve seen fluctuating demand for contractors over the last 12 months. Different role types within the accounting vertical have been more in demand than others.

Trends we’ve noted over this period include:

  • An increased demand in fixed-term contracts versus independent contracting arrangements. This has been mainly budget-driven as there is a reduced overall cost for businesses in taking contractors directly onto the company’s payroll for longer term assignments.
  • A mindset shift from our clients in ‘exact fit’ recruitment. With a reduced candidate pool, businesses have had to be very open minded in terms of how we can find a solution. Through stripping a contract requirement back to key deliverables, we can prioritise ‘essential skills and experience’ versus ‘nice to have’ skills and find outstanding solutions that might look slightly different to the initial brief.
  • Transactional accounting requirements have remained steady. Accounts Payable (AP) temporary roles have been our most in-demand skill set in this space. A lot of organisations are automating and streamlining their AP function which has meant an increased demand for candidates who are more tech savvy. This has been followed by the demand for temporary Credit Control roles as businesses looked to improve their cash flow going into 2023.
  • Financial and Management Accounting roles have been in huge demand. We’ve seen a mass exodus of permanent candidates in this space heading overseas, so businesses are scrambling to backfill these positions with contractors who are hands-on and willing to get the routine tasks completed.

The senior contracting/interim market was quiet through the back end of 2022, but we are seeing the demand continue to increase throughout 2023. The demand for roles at this level has been hugely buoyant overall, but we’ve seen the majority of these roles being taken directly to market on a permanent basis

For more insights from our Accounting and Finance recruitment specialists download our 2023 Market Insights:


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