Match of the Month - June 2024

Through my network, I came into contact with this family business. They were looking for a new treasurer, but it was a tough job: stuck between a rock and a hard place. After my first contact, it took a while before I was invited for an interview. Other agencies had already tried in vain to find the perfect candidate. As a result, I was already behind when I sat at the table.

“There you have another one who claims he can do it”. Still, I convinced them of our expertise and unique approach.

They gave us a chance and soon I was able to present several suitable candidates. Most of them went for interviews. Then, unexpectedly, a known contact person and treasurer from another company presented himself to me: a contact from the company itself. Surprised by his interest, I went to talk to him anyway. It turned out that he was the perfect candidate! And he is now the company’s new treasurer.

This case shows that sometimes you can find the best candidates in the most unexpected places. Through our unique approach and my extensive network, we helped this family business find the perfect treasurer for the future.

Can I help you too in finding a perfect match? Feel free to get in touch.

 

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Understanding the Difference Between Interim and Consultant Roles in Treasury Recruitment

As a recruitment consultant, I speak on a daily basis with interim treasury candidates and large corporations. I often notice that during these conversations, a distinction is made between interim managers and consultants. For many, an interim manager is seen as a freelancer who temporarily fills a role within a company, essentially keeping operations running smoothly. This might be due to a long-term illness, maternity leave, or the departure of an employee, providing the company with time to find a permanent replacement. These candidates are often labeled as relatively “cheap.”

A consultant is viewed as a highly experienced specialist in their field, taking on projects with a clear start and end, such as implementing a Treasury Management System (TMS), setting up a securitization process, guiding the establishment of a new Treasury department, or building an in-house banking environment. These candidates are generally more expensive and come from well-known firms.

However, when I look at the market and listen to my clients and candidates, things are not black and white but often. I believe there are some misconceptions here.

  1. Interim manager as Specialists: Many of my freelance candidates have extensive experience in Treasury and can often hit the ground running when it comes to keeping a seat warm. Yet, having seen so much over the years, they could also be placed on various specialized projects that I mentioned above in the text on consultants. This brings me to my second point;
  2. Cost Perception: Whether something is perceived as expensive or cheap varies from person to person or company to company. However, my freelance candidates often charge a fee within a small range, depending on the assignment, its complexity, distance, and duration. Yet, their rates are nowhere near the prices of the major consultancy firms. Consultancy firms do of course have their merits and can pick up projects with a result guarantee. they often have a broad and deep expertise basis and broader relevant networks

What I’m trying to convey here is: look at what you need as a company and at the individual’s experience and suitability for the assignment, rather than the label they carry or the firm they come from. This approach ensures you get the right person for the job, maximizing value and expertise without unnecessary costs.

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The Rise of Hybrid Work in the Current Labor Market: Why Remote Roles Attract More Applicants

The COVID-19 pandemic has irrevocably changed the labor market. One of the most significant shifts has been the rise of hybrid working models, where employees split their time between working remotely and being in the office. This has been embraced by both employees and employers, leading to a redefined understanding of productivity, work-life balance, and workplace satisfaction. Interestingly, we see with job openings that offer 100% remote work a substantial increase in applicants, highlighting a strong preference among job seekers for flexibility and autonomy. And you attract more candidates as they are not restricted to a certain location, and have to commute to an office.

The Appeal of Hybrid Work

Hybrid work models offer a balance that many employees consider appealing. By allowing workers to spend part of their time at home and part in the office, these models provide the best of both worlds. Employees enjoy the flexibility to manage their personal and professional lives more effectively, reducing commute times and increasing the time available for family and personal activities. At the same time, periodic in-office days facilitate team bonding, collaboration, and a sense of belonging that can sometimes be challenging when working only remotely.

The Surge in Demand for 100% Remote Work

While hybrid models are popular, there is a notable surge in demand for jobs that offer 100% remote work. Many job seekers now prioritize roles that allow them to work from anywhere. This trend is driven by several factors:

  1. Location Independence: Employees can live in more affordable or personally desirable locations without needing to be near a physical office.
  2. Global Opportunities: Workers can apply for positions with companies worldwide, significantly expanding their job prospects.
  3. Personal Preference: Some individuals simply prefer the home office environment and the routines they have established during the pandemic.

Statistics and Trends:

  • A survey by FlexJobs found that 65% of respondents want to be full-time remote employees post-pandemic.
  • LinkedIn data shows that remote job postings attract 2.5 times more applications than non-remote postings.

The Employer’s Perspective

From the employer’s standpoint, offering remote and hybrid work options can be a strategic advantage. Companies that adapt to these preferences can attract a broader and more diverse talent pool, often including individuals who might not consider relocating for a job. Additionally, remote work can lead to cost savings on office space and other overhead expenses. Or hiring staff in geographies who have a lower cost of living and thus lower salary expectations.

Challenges and Solutions:

  • Maintaining Culture: Employers can maintain company culture through regular virtual events, periodic in-person meetups, and robust communication channels.
  • Ensuring Productivity: Utilizing performance management tools and setting clear expectations can help ensure employees remain productive.
  • Managing Remote Teams: Training managers to effectively lead remote teams and fostering a culture of trust and accountability is crucial.

Hybrid Work: The Future Standard?

As businesses and employees adapt to the new normal, hybrid work models are likely to become the standard rather than the exception. Companies like Google, Microsoft, and Apple have already implemented hybrid work policies, setting a trend that many others are following. The hybrid model offers the flexibility and balance that modern employees seek, while still maintaining the essential elements of teamwork and collaboration.

Case Studies:

  • Google: Plans to have 60% of employees work in the office a few days a week, 20% work in new office locations, and 20% work from home.
  • Microsoft: Allows employees to work from home up to 50% of the time without approval from managers.
  • Apple: Initially required employees to return to the office three days a week but faced pushback, illustrating the strong desire for remote work.
    Conclusion

The labor market has undergone a significant transformation, with hybrid and remote work becoming highly valued by employees. Offering 100% remote work attracts a larger pool of applicants, providing companies with access to a wider array of talent. As businesses continue to navigate this new landscape, those that embrace flexibility and adaptability will be better positioned to attract and retain top talent.

Employers must recognize that the preferences of the workforce have shifted. Providing options for hybrid and remote work is no longer just a perk but a necessity to stay competitive. By understanding and responding to these changes, companies can create a more satisfied, productive, and diverse workforce, ready to meet the challenges of the future.

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Match of the Month - May 2024

Many times, I stood at this client’s front door before I was finally allowed in. Several fellow recruitment agencies had preceded me and failed, so I could understand their skepticism. However, after a good personal intake, I walked out with the assignment!

In parallel, I was in close contact with another client, where we have placed successfully several times. The contacts there are very good. One of their employees indicated internally that he was open to a new position that was unfortunately not available within the company, so he started searching the market. While he was open about his search, we were able to approach him and a few conversations later the contract could be signed.

We don’t give up on finding the right fit, and we cater to both companies seeking top talent and individuals searching for their dream job.

Feel free to contact us for advice on your recruitment process.

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CFO vs. Group Treasurer: Charting Your Course in Treasury

As an experienced treasury professional, you might find yourself at a crucial point in your career where you are trying to figure out: what’s next? If your ambition is to go up in hierarchy, two obvious paths come to mind: Group Treasurer (GT) and Chief Financial Officer (CFO). While both offer significant leadership responsibilities and strategic influence, each requires a different skill set and career path. Understanding these differences is important to help you determine which path suits you best.

Group Treasurer: Deepening Expertise and Fostering Collaboration

The Group Treasurer oversees the financial health of the organisation with a focus on core treasury functions: cash flow management, risk mitigation and capital structure optimisation. This role is for individuals who also enjoy technical mastery. You will dive into complex areas such as foreign exchange, derivatives and cash pooling strategies, cementing your position as a treasury expert.

But the GT role is not just technical. Effective leadership and communication are increasingly important. You will bridge the gap between treasury and other departments, ensuring alignment with business objectives. Building strong relationships with stakeholders across the organisation is essential to your success.

Chief Financial Officer: Broader Leadership and Strategic Decision-Making

The CFO position elevates you to the C-suite and places you at the forefront of the company’s financial strategy. You will oversee not only treasury, but also financial planning, accounting, reporting, budgeting and organizational development. And connecting these finance fields to the strategy of the company, reactive as well as proactive. This broader portfolio requires a more diverse skill set. Strategic intelligence is essential. You will provide critical financial insight to the CEO, ensuring decisions drive growth and profitability. Understanding the bigger picture and how finance contributes to the broader business strategy is essential. While treasury expertise remains valuable, a strong understanding of financial analysis, accounting principles, and regulatory compliance is crucial.

The Choice: Aligning Aspirations with Role Requirements

Choosing between these two career parts, it is crucial to look at yourself and think about what drives you. You will want to assess what are your strengths and weaknesses, and what about your job makes you happy?

  • Do you thrive on technical challenges and diving deep into treasury topics? Then the Group Treasurer role may be more suitable for you. You will act as a specialist and will need strong communication skills to explain treasury to laymen, to collaborate with other departments and to maintain relationships with external partners (such as banks and investors).
  • Or, perhaps you like to have a broader role and expand your knowledge outside the treasury field? And have more of an impact on the overall financial health of an organization? Then looking into the CFO path could be a good choice for you. As a CFO, you will also need strong communication and leadership skills to manage multiple finance teams, communicate with stakeholders (board of directors/shareholders/investors), and drive organizational change. But maybe most important, with this expansion of influence also comes greater responsibility, and you will need to feel comfortable being the one making tough decisions that impact the whole organisation. Because when you make a misstep, the ripple becomes a tidal wave!

At the end of the day, both the CFO and Group Treasurer positions are rewarding top-ups to a successful finance career. Do you find yourself wrestling with this decision? At Treasurer Search, we specialise in connecting top treasury professionals with their ideal career opportunities. Contact us when you want to talk about your career path! We are happy to provide you with our guidance.

You can also read our other blogs about strategic career planning:

Strategic Career Planning: How to use the SWOT analysis Mind the Gap: Gap Analysis in Strategic Career Planning

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Match of the Month - April 2024

Next to international treasurers moving around the world for their careers, we see an increasing number wanting to stay where they are or return to the place where they were born.

In The Netherlands, for example, many enjoy living near the border. Like we do in Venlo. Our client in the match of the month also has an office close to the German border and had a demanding assignment for us: find local talent that speaks Dutch AND has expertise in project finance. The talent pool for this in that region is near to non-existent, especially in the current tight labour market.

At the end of the process, the client had the option to choose between a local hero with a lot of long-term potential for the company, and a project finance expert. The first landed a new position. What made the match extra sweet for us, was that we met him already over ten years ago, kept in touch and the investment paid out. That’s why we love our jobs.

Feel free to contact us for advice on your recruitment process.

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The Treasury Leader's Responsibility: Building a High-Performing Team

As a treasury leader, you understand the importance of effective cash flow management, risk mitigation and strategic financial planning. But your role goes beyond these core responsibilities. Building a high-performing team is fundamental to your department’s success. This blog explores key considerations for treasury leaders in building a strong talent pool.

Proactive Succession Planning

While internal recruiters can facilitate the initial stages of hiring, the responsibility for maintaining a robust talent pipeline ultimately falls on your shoulders. Succession planning is a critical aspect of this responsibility. By anticipating potential departures and identifying the skills required for future growth, you can proactively source and develop talent internally. This proactive approach ensures a smooth transition and minimises disruption.

Build a well-rounded Treasury Team

While technical skills are essential, focusing solely on resumes creates a narrow lens. Look for candidates who have complementary skills and personality traits that contribute to a high-functioning team. A strong leader may need a detail-oriented teammate to ensure a balanced and efficient operation. Prioritising cultural fit alongside technical competence will encourage collaboration, build team spirit and ultimately drive departmental success.

Expand your Search

Relying solely on internal recruiters or external agencies introduces an element of risk. To mitigate this, explore alternative recruitment channels. Industry conferences, professional organisations and targeted online platforms can be valuable sources of highly skilled individuals. Proactive outreach demonstrates initiative and commitment to strengthening your team.

Strategies to Retain Your Top Treasury Talent

Attracting talent is only the beginning. Retaining high performers is just as important. Prioritise professional development opportunities to enhance their skills and keep them abreast of evolving industry trends. Clearly defined career paths provide motivation and demonstrate a commitment to employee growth. In addition, fostering a culture of open communication, appreciation and work-life balance creates a positive work environment, promotes employee satisfaction and reduces turnover.

Conclusion: Building a strong treasury team together

At Treasurer Search, we understand the unique challenges faced by Treasury leaders in building exceptional teams. Our extensive market knowledge, combined with a focus on long-term client relationships, positions us as your trusted partner in managing the talent spectrum.

We invite you to get in touch with us! We look forward to discussing your specific needs and working with you to build a high-performing treasury team that will enable your department to achieve its strategic goals.

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Finding Your Perfect Interim Treasurer: Fast & Efficient

You are busy with the day-to-day running of the business, right? The crucial treasury responsibility may also lie with you. Then you know this part is never finished, and that’s where we step in.

Treasurer Search is THE PARTNER for finding interim treasurers, we are the biggest party in the Benelux in this field, and this is why:

Treasurer Search has…

  • A high-quality network: We have more than 300 interim treasurers worldwide, and almost 200 in the Netherlands, with diverse expertise and experience.
  • Fast results: Most of our assignments are filled in within a few days.
  • Familiarity: We know all our interim treasurers personally, know what they are capable of, and when they are available.
  • Personal service: We take the time to discuss your needs and requirements.

Do you already know in which area you need reinforcement? We have interim staff available for various treasury disciplines, such as:

  • TMS implementation
  • Managing operations
  • FX management & policies
  • Funding
  • Daily Cash Management

Connect now with your partner for interim treasurers, and let me bring you added value to your business. In for a quick call?

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Match of the Month - March 2024

The story of this Match of the Month is about a non-European with a great education, a lot of talent and a bit of relevant experience. We presented him to many clients both for permanent as well as interim roles. Often him not being an EU citizen seemed to be an issue. His first assignment in The Netherlands he picked up through our services and he delivers ever since.

We found him various positions and not too long ago he picked up a new assignment through another recruiter. As turned out, it wasn’t made a match in heaven, and the assignment ended prematurely. Contracts in interim management deserve a professional approach, both in setup as well as roll out. Luckily one of our clients asked him to return so he is back on track with the support of our interim management expert Ron.

This experience underscores a crucial element we consider during interim placements: matching personalities, not only just skills. The most qualified candidate on paper might not always translate to a smooth working relationship within the client’s team.

Feel free to contact us for advice on your recruitment process.

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Group Treasurer Recruitment: A Specialized Approach to Finding Top Talent

Recruiting for a treasury specialist is different from recruiting for a Group Treasurer. Technical skills and knowledge are considered a given at this level, personality becomes a more important factor, and stronger connections to business leaders are expected. Mass recruiters are not used anymore, companies are less likely to do the search themselves, and senior executive firms and niche firms like ours are used to find the candidate.

Why finding your next Top Treasury Executive requires a specialised approach

Finding a new Treasury Professional may seem straightforward, but when it comes to group treasurers, a whole new level of expertise is required. At Treasurer Search, we understand the nuances of these critical roles and the specialised approach required to attract top talent. Pieter found his first Group Treasurer of a listed firm before 2000, a first in a string of many that is still being extended.

The Importance of Soft Skills

While technical skills and financial knowledge are essential, they only paint part of the picture for a Group Treasurer. Even more than for junior and medior treasurers. At this senior level, soft skills become paramount. The ideal candidate will possess:

  • Strategic thinking: The ability to align treasury functions with overall business objectives.
  • Strong communication skills: Collaborate effectively and communicate complex financial concepts to diverse stakeholders.
  • Leadership: Inspiring and guiding a team to achieve key financial goals.
  • Business acumen: Understanding the broader business environment and its impact on financial strategy.
  • Relationship building: Fostering strong relationships with internal and external partners.

Tailored Recruitment Strategies

Finding a Group Treasurer demands a far more targeted approach than relying on bulk recruitment methods. These senior positions are rarely filled, and companies often lack the internal expertise to conduct a thorough search. This is where specialized executive search firms like Treasurer Search come in. Identifying & screening candidates, approaching them, and guiding the process are handled more thoroughly and discretely than with junior positions.

Our Approach

  • Deep industry knowledge: We possess and continue to invest in a comprehensive understanding of treasury across various sectors, allowing us to identify the best-qualified candidates.
  • Extensive network: We cultivate long-lasting relationships with top treasury professionals, granting us access to a pool of talent not readily available through traditional methods who pick up the phone when we call.
  • Customized approach: We take the time to understand your specific needs and company culture, ensuring a perfect match between candidate and employer.
  • Confidentiality and discretion: We handle all searches with the utmost confidentiality and respect, protecting the reputations of both companies and candidates.

Partnering for Success

At Treasurer Search, we believe in fostering long-term partnerships. We don’t just fill vacancies; we build successful teams. By leveraging our specialized expertise and targeted approach, we connect you with the ideal Group Treasurer who can elevate your organization’s financial performance and contribute to its long-term success.

Ready to find your next Group Treasurer? Contact us today and let’s discuss your specific needs.

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