Financial Services firms continue to hold off from recruiting professionals and building teams until the picture of post-Brexit Britain is clearer and the political climate has settled.
The hiring of operations professionals has remained very much consistent with the first half of the year. As the political situation progresses from bad to worse and Brexit decisions seem to be no clearer, the confidence of businesses to hire has continued to be stifled. Amongst this, September saw a slight increase in job flow, giving a glimmer of hope for the end of 2019.
Firms have been looking to fill the roles above in order to bolster their Collateral teams so that they can keep up with frequent regulatory changes and the professionals can help implement automation in an attempt to streamline processes. Beyond this, there has also been a level of demand to hire graduates with up to two years’ experience as firms look to secure talented professionals early on in their careers.
Workplace wellness does not seem to be much of a priority across Financial Services Operations, especially not on the contract side of the market. It is more of a noticeable trend for permanent operations professionals, but even then it is nowhere near the level of other industries. Some employers are offering flexible working initiatives to permanent employees if they specifically request it, but it is not available as part of the offer. Whilst this may seem backwards to many, those within the profession understand that operations workers are required to constantly be on hand for traders and clients. As the next generation of employees enter Financial Services Operations, we may see firms having to offer a level of flexibility and other wellness initiatives in order to attract junior level job seekers - the younger generations value a healthy work-life balance more than previous age groups.
We don’t anticipate a huge amount to change before the end of the year. The volume of hires will likely remain low until banks and asset managers know more about what’s happening with Brexit so they can put appropriate plans in place. Whilst there are new regulations on the way, they are more tweaks than the wholesale changes seen with the likes of MiFID, therefore a large spike in hiring is unlikely to happen.
For those looking to secure a new position, it is hugely important to display to the hiring manager or interviewer that you are genuinely interested in the role and enthusiastic about joining the firm. Candidates should thoroughly research and find something unique that they can cite as their reason for applying to this particular role over others. It also pays to keep in touch with old colleagues - outside of the traditional job hunting methods, networking and a recommendation is the best way to get your foot in the door.