This study by IMA®, the ASEAN Federation of Accountants, and other research partners, examines the factors contributing to turnover in the accounting and finance profession in the Asia-Pacific region and presents actionable solutions to accounting and finance leaders for effective talent retention. Canvassing over 1,700 current and former accounting and finance professionals in the Asia-Pacific region in the countries of Australia, Indonesia, Japan, the Philippines, Singapore, Thailand, and others, the study revealed that accounting and finance professionals in the Asia-Pacific region are leaving employers at a high rate, with 27% of respondents saying they expected to leave their current employer in the next 12 months. One in ten professionals in the region even considered leaving the profession altogether in the next 12 months. Particularly, respondents in the 18-to-38-year-old age cohort are most likely to leave their current employer (36%) or the profession (12%) in the next 12 months.
While there exist variations across countries in the region, we found that job satisfaction, perception of career advancement, work flexibility, employee engagement, and a sense of belonging, were key contributors to employees’ decision to leave a job or the profession. As CFOs and other accounting and finance leaders consider talent retention as one of their top priorities, continuously reevaluating talent retention strategies in response to emerging challenges caused by rapid advancements in technology, shifts in workforce demographics, and evolving employee expectations, is paramount to sustaining long-term organizational growth.
Strategies employers can utilize to stem this exodus from the profession include:
- Providing competitive compensation and benefits
- Creating a supportive and inclusive work environment
- Cultivating a culture of respect and recognizing outstanding performance
- Providing professional growth and development opportunities
- Promoting a healthy work-life balance through flexible work arrangements