Education and diversity key to avoiding ‘mass exodus’ in financial services, report says
“The pace of technological change is accelerating, and it is leading to an increase in skill gaps in the sector.”
About two-thirds of financial services employees (64%) said their colleagues without advanced digital and data skills were at risk of being fired in the future. A significant number are also considering leaving the sector on their own. Almost two in five (39%) did not think they would be working in financial services again in the next five years.
It comes amid a digitalization push that is expected to affect jobs across the industry. An overwhelming majority of employees (83%) believed roles in financial services would be affected by digital transformation. Almost half (47%) say new technologies are the main cause of skills shortages, a situation where there is a difference between the skills needed for a job and the skills employers actually have.
The survey of 1,000 employees of financial services companies also revealed that senior leaders are very concerned about the impact of skills gaps. 93% said skills gaps impact productivity and 94% said they affect employee retention.
Financial services employers also struggle to hire diverse talent, especially those from different ethnic backgrounds. 59% of senior managers said it was a challenge, and nine in ten agreed that learning was key to creating a more diverse workforce.
The research also reveals that two-thirds of industry employees (66%) believe apprenticeships can play a major role in solving the sector’s skills shortages, with 85% of those who have worked with an apprentice recommending to hire an apprentice to a colleague.
Importantly, apprenticeships can also help stem the flow of people leaving the industry. Of those who did not think they would still be working in the sector in two years, two-thirds said they would likely stay longer if offered a retraining.
Euan Blair, Founder and CEO of Multiverse, said: “From private equity and pension funds to banking and venture capital, the financial services sector is a cornerstone of the UK economy – but the sector is going through profound change.
“As this report shows, the pace of technological change is accelerating and leading to an increasing skills gap in the sector. Learnings are at the heart of the solution, helping to build future-ready financial services businesses.
“As professionals in the financial services industry argue, apprenticeship programs offer high-quality retraining opportunities for existing employees and an increasingly prestigious and credible alternative to university for those looking to jump-start their careers. . The world of work is changing, and our report released today clearly shows how the financial services industry can keep pace.