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IS THE LIFE OF THE INTERIM/FRACTIONAL CFO FOR YOU?





Recent years have witnessed a surge in interim hires, fuelled by the post-Covid era and the allure of relatively higher pay and more engaging lines of work. Traditionally, taking on an interim role meant temporarily filling a position until a permanent hire was made or assisting clients through business-critical gaps in their infrastructure. However, nowadays, interim roles offer far more fulfilment and engagement, with professionals diving into exciting projects such as business transformation. But is the interim life really the right fit for you?

 

First the positives, of which there are many.


1. Work/Life Balance: Interim roles offer the chance for a better work/life balance. You have the freedom to decide how you spend your time, with the flexibility to work when and where you want, easily changing your work environment.


2. Broadened Experience & Exciting Work: Given the transferable nature of finance skills, interims have the opportunity to explore multiple industries and broaden their experience. They can also gain more senior experience quickly, as organisations are more open to taking chances on individuals due to the short-term nature of interim roles. This enhances CVs, demonstrating versatility, the ability to ‘hit the ground running,’ and a diversified skill set attractive to permanent employers.


3.Less Corporate Politics: Interims can distance themselves from corporate politics, focusing on their work without becoming entangled in office dynamics. Since they are not full-time employees and typically move on to their next role within six to twelve months, they can avoid much of the office politics.


4. Exciting Project Opportunities: Interim roles provide opportunities for new experiences with each contract. Whether it's experiencing different cultures, roles, or project-based work, it offers a more dynamic line of work compared to the routine of a permanent day job.

 

However, along with the positives come some negatives.


1. Lack of Job Security: The primary concern is the lack of job security. It's easier for businesses to not renew a contract than to terminate a permanent employee. This insecurity, coupled with the risk of long periods between roles and lack of employment benefits, can outweigh the benefits of flexibility and work/life balance.


2. Constant Performance Evaluation: With an hourly rate on the invoice, businesses expect results for their money. Interims face constant performance evaluation, with little room for excuses. If employers feel they're not getting value for money, contracts may end abruptly.


3. Lack of Team Affiliation: Interims can feel isolated, seen as outsiders with limited incentive for permanent employees to engage. Building alliances and navigating office dynamics can be challenging without a sense of belonging to a team, leading to feelings of loneliness, especially when working away from home.


4. Increased Competition: Intensified competition in recent years has made it harder for interims to secure roles and maintain higher daily rates, adding pressure on job security.

 

The life of an interim is undoubtedly interesting, with significant benefits and challenges. It has gained popularity in today’s society, where people seek a greater work/life balance and exciting opportunities.




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