Recruiters struggle to close the finance skills gap

The widening skills gap in financial services is continuing to cause problems for recruiters with eight in ten describing the situation as ‘challenging’.

The overall outlook for the sector is less than positive with hiring managers citing a lack of candidates with the appropriate skills to fill key roles within the industry.

Employers say they are fighting for the limited amount of talent available to fill the high-demand technology and specialised finance roles while many recruiters agree they cannot afford to train new candidates.

It has been said that the financial services industry has become less attractive to graduates leaving university which puts a strain on the industry and separate data released in August showed that three-quarters of firms were reporting open vacancies while 65 per cent of those were struggling to fill them.

Even when times are tough, it’s vital that banks and other financial services organisations work closely with specialist providers

Derek Mackenzie, CEO at Investigo, said: “The financial services industry is a powerhouse of growth and having the right talent pipeline in place should be a top priority, even in challenging economic times.

“Recruiting candidates with the latest fintech skills in areas like data science and machine learning has been an ongoing issue for UK businesses, and these capabilities are crucial to fast-growing companies who want to stay ahead of the competition.

“Even when times are tough, it’s vital that banks and other financial services organisations work closely with specialist providers to source, train and equip themselves with the next generation of talent to take the business forward.”

Peter Healy, CEO of Efinancialcareers, said: “Financial services face a strained recruitment climate in 2023, with confidence plunging versus last year.”

He added that firms should “scout broadly for in-demand skills and balance technology with human insights to source and retain top talent.

Similar research conducted by Yooz, the accounts payable automation and Purchase-to-Payment provider, found that41% of UK finance leaders see wage demands as their top challenge in recruiting finance talent, with 38% struggling to find candidates possessing the required qualifications and skills.

This dual challenge is compounded by fierce competition within the job market, casting doubt on the sector’s ability to secure essential talent.

CEO Laurent Charpentier (above) said the challenges were multi-faceted. “Finance leaders are confronted with a dual challenge as they navigate the complex landscape of talent acquisition,” he said.

“Beyond the immediate requirement to provide attractive compensation packages, these leaders are tasked with the intricate responsibility of pinpointing candidates who possess the precise qualifications and skills demanded by the industry.

“Complicating matters is the fierce competition within the job market, which is amplifying any existing apprehensions about the sector’s capacity to secure the necessary talent needed for its continued advancement.”


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