Top three golden finance roles in demand in Hong Kong for 2019

The Robert Half Salary Guide has identified the specific finance roles in demand for 2019 and the reasons behind the increased demand. Read more here.

2019 Robert Half Salary Guide

  • The top three most in-demand finance roles in Hong Kong for 2019: Finance Manager, Finance Accountant and Financial Planning and Analysis Manager. 

According to the newly-released 2019 Robert Half Salary Guide, China’s Belt and Road initiative is driving demand for skilled staff as headcounts increase within finance teams across Hong Kong, with the increased business investment across the city-state driving particular demand for finance managers and accountants. 

Amidst this recruitment drive, finance employers still battle an ongoing skills shortage within the sector. In fact, independent Robert Half research has found just under three-quarters (72%) of Hong Kong CFOs currently find it challenging to source qualified finance professionals, with the number rising to 75% who predict it will become even more challenging in the coming five years. 

Adam Johnston, Managing Director of Robert Half Hong Kong says: “Wage growth within Hong Kong’s financial sector has remained stable over the past 12 months, with salary increments mainly awarded to compensate for inflation. Chinese firms, in comparison to foreign companies, are one of the driving forces behind stable wage growth in the sector as they are behind active demand for entry-level financial professionals. This is partly caused by onshoring, where more companies are looking for quality local talent to fill these entry-level positions. Combined with the Belt and Road initiative that is spurring business investment and rising headcounts in Hong Kong, we expect continued demand for entry-level and value-add positions across the financial sector over the next 12 months.”

“While attractive salary and benefits packages remain crucial for Hong Kong’s financial employers to attract and retain top talent, training and development are also vital for hiring managers to win the ongoing war for talent. As traditional roles within finance become increasingly digitally-focused, companies need to identify opportunities to upskill their existing employees to prepare for a digital future.”

Robert Half has identified the top three financial positions [1] in demand in Hong Kong for 2019 and matched them with the job titles and their respective salaries as published in the 2019 Robert Half Salary Guide [2]:

1.    Finance Manager 

  Salary range  
  Minimum Maximum 
Small/medium company [3] $480,000  $600,000
Large company $600,000 $720,000

Source: Robert Half Salary Guide      

Financial professionals who can navigate an increasingly complex business market are currently in high demand, and finance managers who can guide companies through volatile and changing business landscapes and digitised workplaces find themselves highly sought-after. Compounding this demand, more than one quarter (27%) of CFOs say finance management is the key area within the sector most difficult to source skilled candidates. 

2.    Finance Accountant 

  Salary range  
  Minimum Maximum 
Small/medium company $291,000 $387,000
Large company $324,000 $431,000

Source: Robert Half Salary Guide 

Despite the changing landscape of the financial sector with new technologies impacting the workplace, the “nuts and bolts” aspect of any company remains the same which is why finance accountants with a proven track-record of successfully running accounting and financial activities, providing sound economic analysis and interdepartmental financial updates are highly sought-after. However, almost three in 10 (29%) CFOs find it challenging to source qualified candidates within this area.

3.    Financial Planning & Analysis Manager 

  Salary range  
  Minimum Maximum 
Small/medium company $410,000 $720,000
Large company $600,000 $960,000

Source: Robert Half Salary Guide 

Financial planning and analysis managers are in high demand in a digitised workplace as they are in a good position to make well-informed commercial decisions. However, the skills shortage continues with more than one in four (28%) CFOs finding it challenging to source skilled candidates within this area. Professionals with a heightened sense of awareness for how digitisation is changing the face of organisations, and who can forecast how revenue and expenditures will be impacted due to new technologies will be in high demand throughout 2019. 

[1] Within the industry and commerce sector. 

[2] In the 2019 Robert Half Salary Guide the salary ranges are presented in percentiles. These percentiles are determined by a candidate’s skillset and experience level, as well as the complexity of their role – the higher the percentile the more complex the role and the greater skillset and experience level required.

[3] Company size

Small company S <HK$50 million 
Med-size company HK$50 million < M < HK$150 million
Large company L >HK$150 million 


About the Robert Half Salary Guide
The 2019 Robert Half Salary Guide is the most comprehensive and authoritative resource on starting salaries and recruitment trends in finance and accounting, financial services and information technology in Hong Kong.

It offers a comprehensive overview of the current salary ranges, industry trends and specific job trends for finance and accounting, financial services and technology professionals. The results and insights of the 2019 Robert Half Salary Guide are based on comprehensive analyses, local job placements, local expertise and independent research of industry executives. 

About the research
The annual study is developed by Robert Half and was conducted in January 2019 by an independent research firm, surveying 75 CFOs in Hong Kong. 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]