AFP Survey Finds Increased Support for FP&A Professional Development

  • By AFP Staff
  • Published: 2/29/2024

FP&A Professional DevelopmentCompanies are providing increased levels of support for FP&A professional development.

In a series of questions first asked in AFP’s 2018 Digital Readiness Survey and again this year, results from the 2024 AFP FP&A Benchmarking Survey: People Strategies and Development, underwritten by Workday, reflect improvement in each of the areas covered by those five questions. Overall, respondents rate their satisfaction with company-offered professional development opportunities a 3.5 on a 1-to-5 scale.CHART_Org-Assist-Empl-Skill

Three factors may be driving this trend:

Defining the Field of FP&A

FP&A may have suffered an identity crisis a decade ago, but currently, the field is well-defined with its own recruiting titles, conferences, certifications and skill definition. This specialization is reflected in the survey data that show practitioners with the Certified Corporate Financial Planning & Analysis (FPAC) credential are more likely to focus solely on FP&A rather than spreading their efforts across other finance functions in their work. Overall, maturation is leading to specialization, which makes it easier to identify and justify training to Human Resources and an organization’s CFO.

Low Unemployment Rate

Except for a 20-month pandemic period, the U.S. unemployment rate has been below 4% for six years; the unemployment rate for FP&A professionals is estimated to be below 1% and below 2% in other corporate finance and accounting roles. Investing in your employees is a good retention and recruiting strategy.

Recognition of the Need for Reskilling

Companies understand that technology is changing the way finance delivers its services, creating both new opportunities and minimizing costs. Some tech investment happens from the top down, i.e., developing new systems. Others happen from the bottom up, i.e., investing in people and having them drive the change. Both create opportunities for increased learning.

Action Item

Ask for support. Your employer should want you to be successful and can support you with funding, time and/or insights as to what is most useful in your career path.

This article is an excerpt from the 2024 AFP FP&A Benchmarking Survey: People Strategies and Development, underwritten by Workday. Read the full report to learn more.

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