Since the global financial crisis of 2008, businesses have been running a lot leaner, rarely extending beyond ten per cent above or below capacity. Cutting back has become the norm, with excess on the balance sheet seemingly a thing of the past.

This more prudent management of resources has given rise to a steady growth in Interim roles in companies, and in particular Interim leadership positions. In turbulent times, these senior Interim roles can provide much needed breathing room between permanent candidates. Where a leadership vacancy is not the issue, specialist resources are parachuted in to provide expert knowledge or experience for specific projects, providing targeted insight and solutions to maximise project outcomes.

Not only does this approach neatly match up precise business needs with expert candidates but also reduces the creation of potentially unnecessary and expensive permanent positions, thereby keeping overheads down and shareholder spirits up.

Certainly more and more SMEs and growth enterprises are experiencing times in their growth cycles where specialist Finance knowledge is required, beyond the remit of the current management. This can include fundraising, selling the business or listing the company, where the business requires a Finance expert with very specific skill sets which are crucial to the business at one particular time, but not necessarily in the longer term. Savvy high growth businesses are embracing a quick injection of highly specialised and experienced people with traditional corporate backgrounds, that can successfully apply that knowledge and insight to the SME environment.

fdu’s Interim Practice has seen a surge in demand and as a result of our strong network combined with focused research we have continued to make multiple successful Interim placements throughout the UK. From an Interim Finance Director building a bespoke financial model and raising extensive funds over a short period for a software business, to an Interim Head of Finance’s strong M&A background successfully steering a division of a FTSE listed company through a sale – not only managing the detail with vendor due diligence, but also supporting negotiations in relation to the strategic bigger picture.

This focused positioning of candidates is proving so successful that the Interim placement is no longer regarded as the stepchild in the recruitment family. Now that Interim is the new black, it makes sense to have the right fit – and fdu’s tailor-made solutions provide just that.