• First market slowdown recorded since 2000
• 11% fall in Interim management volumes
• Younger Interims and Interims in their 60s losing out to Interims in
their 40s and 50s
• Daily rates, paradoxically, at record high of £612
• Serious grounds for optimism about new opportunities
4 February 2009 – Interim Manager’s daily rates were still rising at 31st December 2008, according to the latest Snapshot market survey of 9000 Interim Managers from Interim Provider, Russam GMS. However, the survey revealed also an 11% drop in the volume of Interim Management work - the first slowdown recorded since the Russam GMS Snapshot Surveys started in 2000.
In spite of this market slowdown, the average daily rate rose by 1.5% from £603 to £612 a day which is an all time high. Russam GMS cautions that this could be because daily rates are agreed at the start of Interim assignments and the market slowdown has not yet impacted daily rates.
Interims specialising in IT commanded the highest daily rates – an average of £697 a day, followed by general managers on £669, with Interims working in HR and purchasing and distribution being paid on average £597 per day.
Unsurprisingly, Interims working in the financial sector have seen their daily rate drop by 4% from £607 in June 2008 to £583 in December. In addition, for the first time ever, Interim Managers working overseas are earning considerably more than their UK counterparts – an average of £707 a day.
Commenting on the findings, Charles Russam founder and Chairman of Russam GMS, says: “This is the third recession that Russam GMS has lived through. The slowdown in the number of assignments is probably an accurate reflection of the market right now. It is however, encouraging that there remains a strong demand for Interims in many sectors including central and local government, the NHS, education and in the not for profit sectors in particular.”
Interims in their 20s and 30s appear to be losing assignments to Interims in their 40s and 50s. 65% of them were on assignment in June 2008 but this had fallen to 48% by December. Interims in their 60s also saw a drop in the number of assignments they handled with 46% working in June and just 37% on assignment in December. However, over half (52%)of all Interims in their forties were on assignment at 31st December.
Russam believes this has nothing to do with ageism. He says, “When times are good and demand increases the engagement net spreads wider and when the market contracts, it’s all about competition and perceived merit. Our advice to all Interims is to keep skills up to date, stay sharp and look the part at all times and there is no reason why older Interims should not play the same game.”
Interestingly, there was also a shift in the way Interims saw their careers. There was a 4% rise in the number of Interims willing to consider a return to permanent work in search of greater job security. There was also a 2% rise in the number of Interims willing to move between Interim and permanent work. But, there was still only about 15% who were actively looking for a permanent job or hoping their interim assignment would turn permanent.
Russam says, “With fewer assignments, there will be tougher competition for jobs this year and it is inevitable that daily rates will be squeezed but “a fair rate for a good job” has always been our creed and Interims should NOT to work for less than a fair rate. Given the uncertain outlook, it is unsurprising that a greater number of Interims stated they would consider moving to permanent jobs – presumable taking the view that there is greater security in permanent employment."
Another trend was the drop in the number of assignments being sourced through Providers. Russam comments, “Providers like us need to develop excellent client relationships, because with more Interims on the market, we will be relied on less to find Interim talent. We also believe there will be new opportunities emerging out of the recession. While we cannot predict how the market will turn out this year, we know that projects still need to continue. Our experience has shown that businesses will see Interim Managers as a highly flexible, cost effective resource particularly when if they don’t have the budget for permanent hires.”
Charles Russam also believes that this recession, as none before, will highlight the fundamental differences between stereotypical employees and the best Interim Managers. He concludes, “Employees often talk about rights, legal obligations, stress, work-life balance and are rarely quick to relate their pay to the actual value to their organisation. The best Interims don’t talk much about these issues; their thoughts are about competing, winning, delivering results, providing value for money and proving their worth. This is why, in the serious challenges that now lie ahead of us all, the best Interim Managers are going to be glad that they are Interims. And so are their clients.”
Notes to Editors:
Comparisons can also be made against every six month period going back to 1/1/01 – being when this series of the six-monthly Russam GMS Snapshot surveys started. These figures can be seen in detail on our website –www.russam-gms.co.uk
All the quantitative material supporting this survey is based on the Russam GMS database of registered interim managers, which they present as the most comprehensive working database in the sector and, in any case, is consistent with all previous surveys since 2001.
About Russam GMS Ltd:
• Russam GMS is the longest established mainstream provider of interim managers in the UK with a 28 year track record.
• Russam GMS has the most comprehensive working database and range of contacts with Interim Managers within the UK.
• Russam GMS founded the Interim Management Association and is a founder member of the international Taplow Group.
• Russam GMS is a leading specialist provider of interim managers for central and local government, financial services, manufacturing, charity and not for profit sectors and to the private equity and venture capital sectors.
For further information please contact:
Russam GMS Ltd
Tel: +44 (0)20 3249 1072 / 07801 823 839
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