With a strong background in recruiting in the financial services sector, Rena Weld heads up our financial services recruitment team. Her knowledge of the market means we know exactly what employers need when recruiting financial services professionals.
Free download: 2021 Financial Services Salary Guide
Financial Services 2021 Outlook
While economic volatility rose in early 2020 as the pandemic set in and we saw uncertainty across the general financial services industry, towards the second part of the year, financial services came out rather unscathed. The healthiest areas of growth were fund administration, asset management, trading firms, financial advisors and underwriters and fintech. Overall, businesses remain resilient in their outlook for 2021 with many businesses forecasting an increase in recruitment in the sector for the coming year.
The influence of tech-savvy consumers and shifting attitudes of regulators toward new tech are impacting the financial services industry and driving digitalisation. Digital transformation enables the adaptation of existing processes in addition to the development of new offerings and companies will need to meet the demand of customers digitally. Compliance and risk continue to grow across the industry as a whole due to CBI striving to maintain high regulatory standards as well as Brexit. We may expect to see a move towards even more specialised job functions in this area.
Financial Services 2021 Trends in Jobs, Salaries, Recruitment and Employee Expectations
In many ways, the pandemic has led us quickly into the future. It has done wonders for remote-working benefits, overpopulation in the cities as well as helping our planet's sustainability.
Digital Transformation: The growth of technology is evident, and the long-awaited benefit of remote-working has become the new norm. We see an increase of digital platforms and programmes to monitor and measure productivity remotely. This too comes with its challenges as managers are not all trained in such management and companies should consider providing courses and extra supports to Managers to enable them to manage employees remotely. Recruitment and Onboarding for larger organisations that have been able to invest in the correct technology and support for new starters is working well.
Contract and Temporary roles: We saw a growth in contract positions in 2020 and can expect this to run into 2021. Contract and Temporary positions can be a great way for employees to get a flavour and insight into a company before joining it permanently. It can also be a fantastic way to grow new skills and gain exposure to different areas and processes and hone new skills. However, due to the uncertainty of the pandemic, employees in permanent roles are unlikely to leave a permanent role for a contract which is causing a skills shortage in some areas.
Salary Rise: Salaries are expected to continue as normal and rise in some areas of financial services. Salaries for 2021 remain consistent with many employees expecting a salary increase. Many employees have thrived in a remote working environment, have increased productivity and have taken on an increased workload and responsibility through a very uncertain and difficult time and expect to be rewarded as such.
Remote Working: Remote working for many to become a long-term way of work. Employees now expect remote working to become a long-term way of working. People have had a taste of life without commuting 5 days per week and can see the benefits and increased quality of life as well as increased productivity. That said, some employees are keen to get back to the social aspect of work in the office at least for a few days per week. Employers should consider their long-term strategy to ensure both types of employees’ needs are being met. A hybrid structure or a split between working from home and working in the office would suit the majority but some employees are now only interested in full-time remote working. Some of the biggest challenges will be around remote working, returning to the office while improving flexibility and maintaining culture.
Nationwide Jobs: Growth continues in the financial services sector outside of Dublin and will be further supported by the expected uptake of long-term remote working policies. Much growth around the South-East of Ireland but to date, there have been skills shortages in these areas. With the expected move of talented individuals away from cities and towards the regions as well as remote working policies, we can expect further expansion of financial services across Ireland.
Learning & Development Opportunities: Development opportunities and learning support should be given to employees. Employees should not feel that as they are out of sight they are out of mind. Support and training should be improved even more and promotion opportunities and succession planning should be prioritised.
Employee Wellbeing: A consistent focus through 2020, it should be maintained for 2021. We are still in the midst of a pandemic and many have been alone and stressed for nearly a year now so it is important to have a well-being programme and support for employees to ensure not only their wellbeing but by extension their engagement and motivation at work.
Note to Financial Services Employers for 2021
With remote-working policies, you will open up the available talent pool with fewer people being limited by location. However, this does also bring the risk of the market being more competitive so salary and benefits packages will need to remain attractive. Remote-working opportunities should not be expected to compensate for other traditional benefits or salary scales.
Free download: 2021 Financial Services Salary Guide
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