Starting salaries for entry-level college grads in finance and accounting positions have increased 6.1 percent over the past year, and the industry doesn't show signs of slowing in growth or hiring, according to a survey from Ajilon Finance.

It's the third year the professional staffing firm has worked with partners to survey accounting and financial professionals at companies in North America.

Highlights from the latest "Career & Compensation Survey," include:

  • Half of the respondents expect to realize at least above-average compensation gains as compared to the previous year.
  • Out of 175 chief financial officers who answered the survey, 46 percent said that they get paid to paint the "big picture" of their organization and deliver ROI for company stakeholders.
  • By a two-to-one margin, the right corporate culture is what executives are looking for in an employer, but a work/lifestyle balance and compensation are also important factors.
  • 46 percent of respondents felt that Sarbanes-Oxley has positively affected the business climate, but at too great a cost.

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