Nine out of 10 Singaporean finance teams depend on interim managers

Singaporean finance teams are increasingly relying on interim managers to manage projects and transform their businesses. Read more here.

  • 92% of Singaporean CFOs plan to work with experienced interim managers in 2016 – a trend reflected across both SMEs and large companies*. 
  • The demand for financial interim managers is strongest for project management (53%) and business transformation (47%).
  • 85% say working with experienced interim managers is cost-effective and 79% say it is efficient.

Singaporean finance teams are increasingly relying on interim managers to manage projects and transform their businesses, according to independent research from specialist recruiter Robert Half. 92 per cent of CFOs and finance directors in Singapore say they will work with an experienced interim manager in 2016. 

The demand for financial interim managers is strongest for project management (53 per cent) and business transformation (47 per cent). Business continuity (42 per cent), management and leadership enhancement (39 per cent), and change management (26 per cent) are other initiatives that will prompt finance leaders to employ interim managers in 2016.

David Jones, Senior Managing Director Robert Half Asia Pacific said: “Singaporean companies – from small to large – are increasingly attracted to and reliant on a flexible resourcing policy, which they achieve through a combination of permanent and temporary employees with the right mix of skills.”

“Temporary professionals through to interim consultants can be used for various reasons. Along with meeting traditional needs like covering peak periods of the business calendar, such as reporting season, or filling the gap between one senior staff member leaving and finding a permanent replacement, interim consultants are also sought after to provide specific expertise typically in areas of business transformation and special projects.”

“The days of interim consultants solely being viewed as crisis managers are over. They have become a catalyst to drive change and profitability. Many companies are hiring flexible resources who, as an external expert with an objective view, can re-evaluate the challenges and growing pains within the company, implement the required changes and provide alternate perspectives for growth and expansion,” said David Jones.

How to rate the level of success of an interim manager?
Interim managers are rated highly by finance leaders for both efficiency (79 per cent) and cost effectiveness (85 per cent) in achieving specific business goals.

"Companies are seeing the benefits of utilising interim consultants to upskill their department and gain strategic advantages at a lower cost versus the global consulting providers. Bringing on board these expert professionals also indirectly benefits the existing employees of the businesses through offering new perspectives, mentoring and knowledge transfer,” said David Jones.

How to evaluate the success of an interim manager?

More than half (57 per cent) of CFOs and finance directors say the success of interim managers is evaluated through increased efficiency or performance, half (50 per cent) refer to cost savings and a third (31 per cent) identified continued involvement and a hands-on approach as the key metric.

In today’s market interim managers are not just being evaluated on their ability to manage a specific project or implement change, but also on more substantial metrics such as increased revenue (29 per cent) and knowledge mentorship (29 per cent). 

How do you evaluate the success of an interim manager in your company?

Increased efficiency/performance  57%
Cost savings 50%
Successful project/change implementation 47%
Continuous involvement and successful hands-on approach 31%
Increased revenue 29%
Knowledge transfer/mentorship 29%
Less time spent on employee onboarding 22%

Source: Independent survey commissioned by Robert Half among 100 Singaporean CFOs and finance directors – multiple answers allowed.


[*] Company Size Definitions

Number of staff in the respondent’s business

Small 50-249 staff
Medium 250-499 staff
Large 500+ staff


About the research
The annual study is developed by Robert Half and conducted by an independent research firm, surveying 100 Chief Financial Officers (CFO) and finance directors in Singapore. This survey is part of the international workplace survey, a questionnaire about job trends, talent management and trends in the workplace.


Katherine Mills
Public Relations Manager, Asia Pacific
P: +61 2 8028 7757
E: [email protected]