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2019 Accounting and Finance Salary Guide in Commercial Businesses

2019 Accounting and Finance Salary Guide in Commerce and Industry

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Our 2019 Salary Guide offers key recruitment insights within the Commercial Businesses division of Accounting and Finance, covering permanent salaries and contract rates across the Australian market.

Salaries : Accounting | Financial / Business Analysis | Financial Management | Credit Management | Internal Audit | Payroll | Tax | Treasury
Contract Rates : Accounting | Financial / Business Analysis | Financial Management | Credit Management | Internal Audit | Payroll | Tax | Treasury
Commentary On Accounting And Finance Roles, Remuneration And Insights In Commerce And Industry (C&I) In Australia For 2019


All figures shown are in Australian Dollar ($). All amounts are base salary excluding super.

Accounting & Finance - Commercial Businesses

Accounting & Finance Salaries in Commercial Businesses (Per Annum)
ROLE Low High Average
Assistant Accountant 60,000 80,000 70,000
Senior Accountant 100,000 120,000 110,000
Group Accountant 90,000 110,000 100,000
Accounts Payable Clerk 50,000 65,000 55,000
Accounts Payable Manager 75,000 110,000 90,000
Accounts Receivable Clerk 50,000 65,000 55,000
Accounts Receivable Manager 75,000 110,000 90,000
Corporate Accountant 90,000 130,000 120,000
Financial Accountant 70,000 100,000 90,000
Senior Financial Accountant 100,000 130,000 110,000
Management Accountant 70,000 110,000 90,000
Senior Management Accountant 100,000 130,000 110,000
Project Accountant 70,000 100,000 90,000
Financial / Business Analysis
ROLE Low High Average
Business Analyst 80,000 110,000 100,000
Senior Business Analyst 110,000 130,000 120,000
Financial Analyst 90,000 110,000 100,000
Senior Financial Analyst 110,000 130,000 120,000
Financial Planning and Analysis Analyst 90,000 110,000 100,000
Senior Financial Planning and Analysis Analyst 110,000 130,000 120,000
Financial Planning and Analysis Manager 140,000 180,000 160,000
Head of Financial Planning and Analysis 180,000 250,000 200,000
Commercial Analyst 100,000 120,000 110,000
Senior Commercial Analyst 120,000 140,000 130,000
Commercial Manager 150,000 200,000 170,000
Head of Commercial Finance 200,000 300,000 240,000
Financial Management
ROLE Low High Average
Finance Manager 120,000 160,000 140,000
Financial Controller 150,000 220,000 180,000
Chief Financial Officer / Finance Director (SME) 180,000 250,000 200,000
Chief Financial Officer / Finance Director (Large/MN) 220,000 400,000 300,000
Credit Management
ROLE Low High Average
Credit Controller 60,000 80,000 70,000
Credit Manager 90,000 120,000 100,000
Internal Audit
ROLE Low High Average
Internal Auditor 65,000 80,000 75,000
Senior Internal Auditor 80,000 110,000 90,000
Internal Audit Manager 110,000 140,000 120,000
ROLE Low High Average
Payroll Clerk / Officer 60,000 75,000 65,000
Payroll Manager 80,000 120,000 100,000
ROLE Low High Average
Tax Accountant 75,000 100,000 90,000
Senior Tax Accountant 90,000 130,000 120,000
Tax Manager 130,000 200,000 150,000
Head of Tax 180,000 250,000 220,000
ROLE Low High Average
Treasury Accountant 75,000 100,000 90,000
Treasury Manager 120,000 150,000 130,000
Accounting & Finance Contract Rates in Commercial Businesses (Per Day)
ROLE Low High Average
Assistant Accountant 250 300 280
Accountant 320 400 360
Senior Accountant 400 480 440
Group Accountant 400 480 450
Accounts Payable Clerk 200 240 240
Accounts Payable Manager 320 400 330
Accounts Receivable Clerk 200 240 240
Accounts Receivable Manager 320 400 330
Corporate Accountant 360 400 360
Financial Accountant 360 380 360
Senior Financial Accountant 360 450 420
Management Accountant 320 400 360
Senior Management Accountant 360 450 440
Project Accountant 330 390 350
Financial / Business Analysis
ROLE Low High Average
Business Analyst 390 440 420
Senior Business Analyst 460 520 500
Financial Analyst 390 440 420
Senior Financial Analyst 460 520 490
Financial Planning and Analysis Manager 520 600 550
Commercial Analyst 380 440 420
Commercial Manager 520 600 550
Financial Management
ROLE Low High Average
Finance Manager 470 560 520
Financial Controller 520 720 600
Chief Financial Officer / Finance Director (SME) 720 1,100 850
Chief Financial Officer / Finance Director (Large/MN) 1,200 2,000 1,400
Credit Management
ROLE Low High Average
Credit Controller 260 320 280
Credit Manager 320 400 360
Internal Audit
ROLE Low High Average
Internal Auditor 260 320 280
Senior Internal Auditor 320 440 360
Internal Audit Manager 440 560 480
ROLE Low High Average
Payroll Clerk/Officer 240 300 260
Payroll Manager 320 480 400
ROLE Low High Average
Tax Accountant 350 400 380
Senior Tax Accountant 360 520 480
Tax Manager 520 800 600
Head of Tax 720 1,000 850
ROLE Low High Average
Treasury Accountant 300 400 350
Treasury Manager 480 520 500


2018 was the year of automation and visualisation for finance. Commercial functions focused on the introduction of data visualisation tools such as Tableau and Qlikview as the Australian market turned its eye to the ever-developing lovechild of analytics and finance; financial planning and analysis (FP&A). IFRS was on everybody’s mind as well, with 9, 15 and 16 dominating the technical accounting space and affecting every industry, from Retail to Construction. With the changes hitting revenue recognition, leasing, and financial instruments, it was rare to see a company not have to make small changes, and this drove the need for technical consultants from chartered firms, either consulting or contracting. Companies sought out independent contractors who could provide continued support as an alternative to paying for consultants from the Big 4 or professional firms.

We saw a clear increase in jobs available, up 28% increase from 2017 and this ran consistently across the year. Interestingly we saw a conversely lower number of job seekers. In the first half of the year, job seekers registered with us dropped 31%; however there was an astounding rise in numbers in the second half of the year - up 104% compared to the second half of 2017.
There was a distinct struggle for many businesses throughout the first half of the year to ensure they were finding appropriate skill sets for the more niche development areas within their finance teams, as evidenced by the statistics.

The Healthcare, Property and Construction industries continued to flourish in 2018, alongside a spike from Energy as an emerging market, with a focus on renewable resources resulting in a big influx of job opportunities, whilst the Retail market's key driver this year was a focus on the end-user customer experience to improve sales both online and in-store, especially as foot traffic drops to make way for online shopping.

We found the following to be the most popular roles and trends over 2018:

  • $150,000+ roles in commercial business partnering and newly created finance business partner roles with the capacity to deliver information through an operational and strategic lens.
  • $80,000 - $130,000 IFRS technical accountants on both temporary and permanent basis to consult and assist with major changes in 6, 15 & 16.
  • Second or third movers from the Big 4, including Australian returners circa $120,000+ looking to move into junior finance manager or analyst roles.
  • Commercial analysts with multisystem and BI tool knowledge to aid in the data visualisation journey.

As mentioned previously, new IFRS regulations lead to a renewed focus in technical accounting roles, and increased the need for strong candidates in both the contracting and permanent spaces, with a passion for financial control and governance, whereas last year these roles had been quiet due to the drive for commercial insights to build businesses.

Within the Retail space, Amazon’s announcements of food and pantry markets have driven supermarkets to shake up their strategies, as technological advancements also push delivery capabilities and times down further and increase competition. Within Aviation and Oil/Gas industries, the issues in the later half of the year in Saudi Arabia caused hiring freezes, paused new bids and contract signings and created general disruption as fuel prices went through the roof.

There has been plenty of movement in Media across the year, with acquisitions from JCDecaux and Ooh!Media, suggesting that companies are looking at alternate ways to increase their market share. Alongside this, the $4 billion merger between Fairfax and Channel 9 is expected to create new opportunities in the market.

The trend of acquisition has flowed across a majority of industries this year, with large acquisitions and sales happening across the heavy industries with companies in Rail, Engineering, Transport and Utilities all making major changes to their structures following merger and acquisition transactions between Downer, UGL, Caterpillar, Spotless, and more.

We are still of the view that the market is very good for executive and senior accounting and finance roles. After so many years of cost-cutting, most corporates are recognising the need to offer their own people internal opportunities to develop, as well as seeing the value in bringing in outside talent on a regular basis; people who can add value and bring in fresh thinking and particular skills. 

The salaries have not moved in the last year for permanent candidates and, in fact, we have seen companies reducing overall salary packages for senior roles when replacing them. There has been more flexibility in the contracting space where more niche project-based or strategy-based skill sets are required. Companies are more likely to flex on a daily or hourly rate salary that falls into CAPEX than a permanent salary that falls into OPEX and requires more sign off.

At the senior level candidates are looking for more autonomy and broader mandates, as well as the opportunity to implement change. This has resulted in senior finance professionals moving from mid-sized and large companies into SME's and start-up organisations for more of an entrepreneurial approach. 

Finance will continue to grow and develop in 2019, to encompass a multi-disciplinary, multi-faceted approach to information sharing that can benefit the business by incorporating elements of accounting, analytics, computer science, operations, commercial, sales, marketing and more. The pathways to finance as a career, and as a means to delivering numbers to the business, are becoming more abundant, and the Australian finance market has, throughout this year, finally begun to see the value in diversifying it’s teams to really understand and interpret financial information. Now the first round of IFRS 16 reporting has been dealt with, we predict the need for technical specialists will quieten down again until the updates to IFRS 14 and 17, which are not yet endorsed for the next year.

Our advice to job seekers in the coming year is; think carefully about whether you have upskilled enough in your current role or your own time to pursue your next career move. This is particularly important for permanent candidates looking to make a long term move, who have had a number of years within one organisation and may not have consciously upskilled recently. With data visualisation and strategic insights driving business in the commercial space, and an increased need for advanced systems skills, if you feel you are not up to scratch, then consider taking online courses, or approaching your manager to look at projects or upskilling opportunities.
Contractors are advised to consider the sorts of skills, both soft and technical, they feel they wish to build, and focus their short term or project-based opportunities around bringing those elements into their toolkit. With the flexibility on hiring practices for contractors increasing, and people using it as an opportunity to broaden their horizons, this is the perfect way to diversify and ensure you are at the forefront of new trends.

Our advice to hiring managers in the coming year; consider benchmarking salaries externally with your newly created roles. Internal benchmarking has been an issue we have come up against repeatedly this year whilst trying to secure top talent for companies who are basing new positions on roles already existing that do not have the capacity to complete the desired task at hand. It undermines the potential worth of the new employee to your business and often means settling for a candidate who is unimpressed with remuneration, or who does not have the exact skills you are after.

accounting and finance salary guide 2019



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