CHICAGO - With job opportunities in the technology industry remaining abundant, most technology CFOs are optimistic about their hiring plans in 2014, according to data released today by BDO USA, LLP. Ninety-one percent of CFOs expect the number of employees at their companies to increase or remain the same in the coming year, consistent with the survey’s findings over the past four consecutive years (88 percent last year, 91 percent in 2012 and 93 percent in 2011). According to recent reports, employers remain focused on hiring in several areas, including big data, cloud computing and data security. Moreover, employment in all information technology fields is expected to increase by 22 percent by 2020, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.
In addition to stable employment, nearly all of the CFOs who participated in BDO’s survey (98 percent) anticipate total compensation for workers to remain the same or increase in 2014. As BDO’s study previously reported, 94 percent of CFOs anticipate stable or better sales revenue in the coming year, so it’s no surprise that many are optimistic about their ability to provide their workforce with competitive salaries.
“Although the overall U.S. employment market has been slow to recover, the technology industry has been a bright spot for employment opportunities, particularly in major U.S. technology hubs,” says Aftab Jamil, partner and leader of the Technology and Life Sciences practice at BDO USA, LLP. “As demand for the latest technology offerings remain strong, hiring wars will continue, and companies will need to compete for the strongest, most innovative talent in the domestic and global markets.”
Tech Companies Plan to Keep Business Functions Onshore
As costs to maintain overseas operations rise, more U.S. companies are carefully considering their offshore strategies and expanding jobs domestically. The vast majority of CFOs (95 percent) do not anticipate to offshore their operations in the coming years.
Of those who currently outsource or offshore services outside of the U.S., 59 percent indicate that manufacturing is the most heavily outsourced function, followed by research and development (54 percent) and information technology (IT) services and programming (41 percent). However, an increasing number of technology companies have begun to promote their efforts to bring manufacturing back to the U.S. For example, Apple is preparing to open a manufacturing facility in Arizona, which will create hundreds of new jobs, and has also recently retained U.S. manufacturer Flextronics to assemble its Mac computers.
These findings are from the seventh annual BDO Technology Outlook Survey, which examined the opinions of 100 chief financial officers at leading technology companies throughout the United States. The survey was conducted from December 2013 to January 2014. The full executive report will be released in the coming weeks.
Other major findings from the 2014 BDO Technology Outlook Survey include:
- China and Southeast Asia are leading outsourcing destinations for manufacturing. Among the CFOs who currently outsource or offshore their manufacturing function, 65 percent report that China is the primary location for their manufacturing needs as production skills have become more sophisticated, followed by Southeast Asia (48 percent) and Western Europe (19 percent). As for future targets for outsourcing, a majority of CFOs (57 percent) said they are most likely to consider Latin America in the coming years.
- Sales and marketing will be a key area for employment growth in 2014. Sales and marketing positions continue to be top of mind for technology CFOs, with 49 percent planning to hire the most new employees in this sector, up more than 50 percent from last year. This significant increase could be attributed to the intense competition within the industry and companies having to stay ahead of rapidly changing technology. CFOs are also looking to hire for positions in manufacturing and R&D, with 21 percent citing each as recruitment priorities.
About the Technology & Life Sciences Practice at BDO USA, LLP
BDO has been a valued business advisor to technology and life sciences companies for over 100 years. The firm works with a wide variety of technology clients, ranging from multinational Fortune 500 corporations to more entrepreneurial businesses, on myriad accounting, tax and other financial issues.
About BDO USA
BDO is the brand name for BDO USA, LLP, a U.S. professional services firm providing assurance, tax, financial advisory and consulting services to a wide range of publicly traded and privately held companies. For more than 100 years, BDO has provided quality service through the active involvement of experienced and committed professionals. The firm serves clients through 52 offices and more than 400 independent alliance firm locations nationwide. As an independent Member Firm of BDO International Limited, BDO serves multi-national clients through a global network of 1,264 offices in 144 countries.
BDO USA, LLP, a Delaware limited liability partnership, is the U.S. member of BDO International Limited, a UK company limited by guarantee, and forms part of the international BDO network of independent member firms. BDO is the brand name for the BDO network and for each of the BDO Member Firms. For more information please visit: www.bdo.com.