Women are 30 per cent more likely to win an interim assignment than a man, according to the latest six month snap shot survey of 17,000 interims from Russam GMS.
Women account for just 13 per cent of respondents compared with 87 per cent of men; yet almost half of them are on assignment, compared with 36 per cent of men, highlighting the fact they are winning more assignments and outperforming men in interviews.
Compared with the permanent employment market, women in interim management are also on a more equal footing in terms of pay. On average they are paid £628 per day, compared with men at £655 whereas in the permanent employment market women are paid 19 per cent less than men.
Jason Atkinson, Managing Director, Russam GMS said: “Women in interim management are excelling and are winning the most work. There are major opportunities for senior level women in the market and we want to encourage and support more women to consider interim as a career.”
The research also revealed that interims in their 50s are getting the most work, with half of them currently on assignment. Next were interims in their 60s where 31 per cent are on assignment, followed by interims in their 40s where 8 per cent are on assignment.
Interims in their 50s earn the most too, averaging rates of £682 per day; however, they offer companies value for money compared with a full time employee as they are not paid pensions, holidays, healthcare and other benefits – making interims a cost effective way to bring senior level skills into a business.
Jason Atkinson said, “The fact that interims in their 50s and 60s are getting the lion share of the work highlights that Interims are recruited for their experience and skills – age and gender don’t influence the hiring process. The best people are recruited for the job and it is all about performance. The industry is progressive and enlightened and arguably one step ahead of the permanent recruitment market.”
The research showed that interims with change management, transformation and turnaround experience, especially in financial services were most in demand. Over 36 per cent of interims on assignment were hired to lead change management, transformation and turnaround roles in the last six months; 20 per cent for their specialist skills they offered and 11 per cent for restructuring roles.
The busiest sector for interims is financial services – with 12 per cent of all interim roles – followed by engineering and manufacturing at 9 per cent and not-for-profit and charities at 9 per cent. Interestingly, roles in healthcare were down in the past six months by almost 4 per cent with only 5 per cent of interim assignments in this sector.
Rates of pay for interims in financial services are amongst the highest with retail banking topping the rates by sector at £900 per day, along with telecommunications (£900), with business services (£888) and wealth management (£825) the second and third highest paid sectors.
Over the past six months, the average daily rates of pay remained static at £651 per day, although those working part-time have seen their pay increase from £597 to £633 per day since December 2014.
Interims specialising in communications saw a huge leap from £533 to £1,000 per day over the past six months, and those working in risk and compliance saw pay rates increase from £625 to £800 per day.
Most interims are committed to their profession and see if as a career rather than a stop-gap employment option. Over a third said they would never take a full time job and less than 1 per cent said they hoped that their interim role would become permanent.
Jason Atkinson commented: “Organisations are increasingly seeing interims as a reliable and strategic resource to drive change and transformation. Interims are helping such organisations become leaner and more efficient – enabling them to hire really good people with specialist skills on a project by project basis.
“Overall, the market is recovering well and demand for interims picking up in many areas – particularly in financial services. This buoyancy offers great opportunities for talented and experienced interims and especially women, to come into the market and carve a successful career.”