Winning The “Talent War” In The Financial Services

Posted on 03 September 2023

As the GCC area has continued to see tremendous economic development in recent years, the region's need for talent across many disciplines, sectors, and industries has reached a peak, resulting in extremely competitive employment markets, which is very often referred to as the "Talent War”.

As part of their new total reward strategies to attract and retain top talent, the region's public and private sectors have recently offered competitive and attractive salaries and benefits, in addition to other incentives, resulting in shortages in some sectors such as financial services and technology

The challenges that some financial sectors in the region are facing are also related to attractive employment opportunities for top talent from outside the region, such as Asia and Europe, which means that companies are now competing with other global talent demand dimensions in addition to talent

Despite the fact that the banking and financial services industries are mature and well-established in the region, there is still a high need for people with knowledge in corporate finance, investment banking, asset management, and financial analysis.

Additionally, the rise of competitive industries such as fintech has also cannibalized the conventional financial services talent pool; before, these businesses turned to the tech industry when recruiting, but are now confronted with more regulation, demanding financial services skills and experience.

The situation of recruitment in financial services

According to the CBI and PWC report, the financial services industry is optimistic as business volumes continue to rise. Nonetheless, 22 percent of respondents mentioned workforce shortages as a worry for future investment, which is consistent with the long-term average and the previous quarter. A number of big banking groups, as well as smaller financial services businesses, have lately increased fees for certain tasks in order to better incentivize their talent partners, a trend not seen since the early 2000s. 

Simultaneously, many firms are attempting to enhance their diversity and inclusion performance. This has resulted in particularly fierce rivalry for diverse applicants, prompting organisations in the financial services industry to headhunt the same people from one another, further raising pay while failing to broaden the talent pool.

The industry must do more. More remote employment possibilities, more diverse applicants, and more action to find hidden brilliance wherever it may be found. Businesses will be able to enhance the total supply of qualified and competent applicants by doing so. This strategy offers an alternative to just compete harder for people currently employed in financial services businesses. 

In recent years, the financial services industry has undergone significant changes in working habits, and in certain cases educated companies on the advantages of agile working. The problem today is for businesses to maintain these advantages while maintaining their identity and culture.

Recruitment will play a significant role in this, and the plan must originate from the firm's top management. 

How to stay ahead of the competition

Working successfully with executive search companies is your first and best head start in the fight to attract and retain outstanding people. Financial recruitment experts understand their industries, both historically and now, and can provide the finest recommendations on how to stand out to the sort of talent you want. They will also be able to expose you to talent from a wider variety of backgrounds, allowing you to think outside the box in terms of how you define and access talent. 

Beyond the brief

Working successfully with executive search companies is more than simply paying more - while this may assist, particularly when recruiting for senior and executive positions. It also relies on working with professionals who have the necessary market expertise. Benefits particular to the financial services industry, like as buy-outs, long-term incentive schemes, guaranteed bonuses, and stock options, all play a role and should be discussed from the start.

Look for skilled, competent advisors with vast networks when selecting a partner for your talent acquisition methods. A long-term partnership will ultimately provide the highest return on investment, but the consultant should perform the majority of the legwork to locate and provide the most skilled people.

Going ahead, competition for talent in the financial services industry and associated areas will be severe. Contact Binding Partnerships to set up an initial and guarantee you are bringing great talent into your business on terms that will ensure long-term employee happiness.

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