Press Release: Dip in Monthly Figures, While Long-Term Trend Remains Intact

Hakan Enver 11.06.2015

Innovative packages luring fintech professionals into start-ups

London Employment Monitor May 2015 highlights

  • Year-on-year figures show available jobs increase by 13%
  • Month-on-month figures show a decrease in both professional opportunities (down 20%) and in professionals seeking to move (down 14%)
  • Salaries increased by 18% on average for those securing new jobs in May 2015


A temporary blip?

"The dip in the monthly numbers was a bit of a surprise,” says Hakan Enver, Operations Director Morgan McKinley Financial Services. “It appears as if everyone went to the pub to celebrate that the elections were finally over and by the time they’d recovered it was half-term and time to take the kids to Disneyland Paris.”

Contrary to reports being published by other recruitment businesses, professional opportunities fell by 20% on the previous month reversing last month’s growth. “Remember when it came to days in the office it was a short month with the two bank holidays,” says Enver. “There is definitely an element of ‘if they're not working, then they are not hiring’ at play in last month’s numbers.”

The number of professionals seeking new opportunities was down 14% month-on-month. The end of the bonus rounds in the previous month has a tendency of showing a strong monthly number for new candidates. The year-on-year figure however, shows a substantial increase on the previous year. “The yearly increase shows a strong supply of professionals, but it is somewhat deceptive,” says Enver. “There is still a shortage of talent in certain areas, compliance and governance in general, being prime examples.”With a fall in monthly figures for both opportunities and professionals, the yearly figures still indicate a growing upward trend in the employment market.

With a fall in monthly figures for both opportunities and professionals, the yearly figures still indicate a growing upward trend in the employment market. “I suspect the election results and the short working month have had an effect on the numbers. It’s too early to call this a reversal of the trend,” says Enver. “We still predict a return to growth as the year progresses.”


Elections and Brexit

The election results came as both a surprise and a relief to the City. While it is widely recognised that the City leans towards the Conservatives, the biggest reason for the relief was the clarity of the result. It immediately erased the fears of a coalition government. “Markets dislike uncertainty. The polls before the elections led many to fear a protracted and difficult negotiation process in forming a coalition, that concern is now over,” says Enver.

As the election results became clear, discussion immediately moved on to the subject of a referendum on Europe and a possible Brexit. Focus of the debate will now move on to the pros and cons of remaining in the Union.   


Banks moving headquarters

While the nation prepares to make a decision on Europe, banks are mulling whether to remain in the UK. As the fines rack up, banks have to deal with continually increasing scrutiny. As a result, several banks have publicly indicated that moving out of the UK is a possibility if the regulatory environment becomes unfavourable. Deutsche Bank is the latest entrant to the debate by publicly revealing that they have been considering a UK exit plan.It’s not as easy to move your operations as some industry officials make it sound. 

“There’s an element of political lobbying here,” says Enver. “It’s not as easy to move your operations as some industry officials make it sound. There are significant costs and risks involved, finding new talent being just one of them.”


Economy progress continues

The overall economy continues to show signs of improvement as unemployment is down and wages are increasing. These favourable economic conditions were further confirmed by the release of the CBI study, which found the three months leading up to May showed that “Growth had quickened in all main sectors”. The strongest growth was seen in business and professional services. 

A further boost to consumers has been the rise in the value of sterling, which is contributing to household confidence as people start to sense that they have more money in their pocket. However, although unemployment is likely to continue to fall, it will be hampered by the skills shortage in some sectors.


Average salary increases

The average salary increase for those securing new jobs in May 2015 was 18%, compared to 19% in April 2015.  Despite the talent shortages highlighted above, those securing new positions in this market continue to demand attractive salary rises by moving institutions. Of the last nine months, apart from January 2015 when the average salary change rose by 21%, the difference has remained consistent at 18.5%.

The interesting shift has been top developers snubbing the big banks for fintech and start-up firms.Innovative packages luring fintech professionals into start-ups

In terms of IT within financial services, recent Emolument data shows that the outlook is bright for IT professionals, with most receiving bonuses in line with expectations this year. As expected, the most handsomely rewarded were those with roles closely linked with revenue generating operations, for example developers working in the front office of funds and banks. In these surveys the average bonus (as a percentage of annual base salary) for assistant vice-presidents (AVP) was circa 20% whilst Vice-Presidents (VP) were awarded 32%. However, for some bulge bracket institutions, some high performing staff received up to 80-100% in this round.

The interesting shift has been top developers snubbing the big banks for fintech and start-up firms. Professionals placed by Morgan McKinley with start-ups and fintech firms have received creative compensation packages. “One leading tech firm offered a data developer £60,000 in shares to match his £60,000 basic salary with the option to acquire cash or increased shares on an annual basis,” says Enver.

Whilst these innovative salary packages may not lure everyone out of the banks, it adds a very interesting dynamic to those who want to work in cutting edge environments and make smaller nimble firms a viable alternative to the big banks.

Chart 1: Financial services jobs new to the market May 2015


Chart 2:  Professionals seeking new roles, both in and out of employment May 2015



Chart 3: Average change in salary each month May 2015


Chart 4: Average Salaries and Average Bonuses for IT Professionals In Investment Banking, London: May 2015


Chart 5: Average Salaries and Average Bonuses for IT Software Development Professionals In Financial Services, London, May 2015


Chart 6: Average Salaries and Average Bonuses for IT Senior Management In Financial Services, London, May 2015






























Download the full press release here



Further press information:

Sharmee Mavadia or Hirrah Salim
Tel: 0207 092 0023                                     

Notes to editors:

Statistical methodology

Monthly new jobs and new candidates
From May 2013, the London Employment Monitor now uses Morgan McKinley’s own weekly records of new permanent and temporary job vacancies and new candidates registering with the firm for employment. Statistics for the full market are derived using Morgan McKinley’s market share.

* Chart (3) illustrates the average percentage change between original salary and new salary offer for professionals securing new roles each month.

IT Professionals Salaries and Bonus Data
Charts (4, 5 & 6) data powered by, retrieved 02/06/2015, and provided directly by IT professionals in Investment Banking and Financial Services industries within London.

About Morgan McKinley
Morgan McKinley is a global professional services recruiter connecting specialist talent with leading employers across multiple industries and disciplines.

With offices across Ireland, the UK, EMEA, Asia and Australia, the company’s professional recruitment expertise spans banking & financial services; commerce & industry and professional services. Morgan McKinley is a preferred supplier to many of the major employers in its specialist sectors and thousands of smaller local firms.

In 2013 Morgan McKinley was ranked 39th out of 100 in Recruiter magazine’s Hot 100, which ranks recruitment companies in the UK.

In 2013, Morgan McKinley was recognised in the Irish Independent’s listing of Best SME Workplaces in Ireland. We are also proud to be ranked in Deloitte’s Top 20 Best Managed Companies in Ireland for 2013.

In 2015 Morgan McKinley was awarded Best Banking & Financial Services Recruitment Agency at the Recruiter Awards 2015.

Hakan Enver's picture
Managing Director