More than half (59 per cent) of Ireland’s business chiefs expect to award basic pay increases in the next year with business confidence continuing to grow across the country, according to a survey of chief financial officers (CFOs) by PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC).
The survey indicated that the vast majority of CFOs were likely to increase basic pay in the next 12 months, compared with around a third (38 per cent) when surveyed last year.
PwC collated the data during the summer months, involving 140 CFOs, which also revealed that maintaining margins and profitability continued to be the biggest challenge for business, followed by regulatory pressures.
The overall outlook for Ireland’s economy appears increasingly optimistic, with 43 per cent of respondents feeling positive compared with just 11 per cent when surveyed in 2012.
Three-quarters of CFOs surveyed expect business revenues to grow in the year ahead, up from 59 per cent in 2012, while almost two-thirds (65 per cent) expect profits to grow, up from 55 per cent last year.
Garrett Cronin, consulting partner at PwC, insists finance means more now than ever before, with the role of the CFO "evolving".
"As businesses increasingly look for analysis and data to support strategic decisions, the CFO’s role is likely to embrace better business alignment including the principles of performance and risk management more than we currently see today," said Cronin.
Other key takeaways from PwC’s business survey include:
42 per cent of CFOs are preparing for additional capital investment, up from 35 per cent last year.
Almost half (47 per cent) of CFOs expect expansion in employee numbers, up from 35 per cent in 2012.