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US treasury and finance professionals average 3.5% pay rise

US treasury and finance professionals earned an average 3.5% base salary increase in 2018, according to the Association for Financial Professionals’ (AFP) latest Compensation Survey. The figure compares with a core rate of inflation in the US of 1.9% last year, against 2.1% in 2017.

The AFP, which got responses to its survey from more than 3,500 US treasury and finance professionals, reports that executive and management-tier professionals enjoyed average pay rises of 3.2% and 3.6% respectively, while staff garnered a 3.9% raise.

Nearly 70% of all employees were awarded bonuses in 2018; a figure essentially unchanged from the year before. Executives’ bonuses increased 23%, possibly due to receiving greater salary hikes from incentive compensation instead of traditional pay increases. More than six in 10 organisations (61%) awarded bonuses based on operating income/EBITDA targets.

Career advancement

When asked about upward mobility and career advancement the criterion that the 3,500-plus survey respondents cited most often was “increased job responsibility” at 86%. Other factors included:

  • Contribution to profitability (69% of respondents);
  • Earning a professional certification such as AFP’s Certified Treasury Professional or Certified Cash Manager (36%);
  • Earning an MBA or other advanced degree (30%).

Asked about critical job competencies and talent gaps, the skill respondents cited most was “strong analytical skills” at 55%, followed by “leadership and people management” (37%). However, 37% believe financial professionals lack leadership and people management skills and one third say their colleagues are wanting in strategic and innovative skills.

“The 2019 AFP Compensation Survey underscores the contributions treasury and finance professionals make to their organisations,” said Jim Kaitz, president and CEO of AFP. “Yet the survey also reveals a skills gap. Treasury and finance professionals need to invest in their careers to stay relevant, especially in this age of digital disruption.”

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