Asia is leading the way in gender diversity
In recent months, hiring in the financial services industry has hit record numbers globally, with eight major hubs showing increases of 64% in advertised roles. This makes the financial services sector one of the fastest hiring industries post-pandemic, only surpassed by the technology sector.
These findings were revealed in a new report from recruitment consultancy Robert Walters. The report, ‘Hiring Trends in the World’s Leading Financial Services Cities’ looks at the labour market across London, New York, Tokyo, Sydney, Paris, Singapore, Frankfurt, and Hong Kong.
London continues to power ahead as home to the most financial services professionals working in any one city (293,700). However, the AsiaPac region has increased in the last 12 months, with Singapore (250,000), Sydney (167,364), and Tokyo (166,000+) being the most notable cities with high levels of financial services talent.
Job Growth in the Past Year by City
- London: +101%
- New York: +78%
- Tokyo: +77%
- Singapore: +76%
Job Growth by Region
- Europe: +62%
- North America: +60%
- AsiaPac: +61%
In terms of the greatest numbers of advertised job roles, New York (48,595), London (38,945), and Paris (24,165) are in the lead.
AsiaPac, however, shows the best hiring conditions. Professionals in Sydney (81%), Singapore (76%), Hong Kong (67%), and Tokyo (60%) expressed a high willingness to move roles even with this very tight candidate market.
Asia is also leading the way with gender diversity in the financial services sector. For example, Singapore (46%) has almost 50/50 gender diversity; meanwhile, in Hong Kong, women make up 44% of the banking workforce.
New York (36%) and London (36%) lag with gender diversity. However, they have made strides in cultural, racial, and socio-economic diversity. Many firms in these areas have advanced recruitment programmes to ensure their workforce represents the diversity of the city in which they are based.
Senior hires typically represent around 8-10% of all new hires. Most of the hiring is at junior and mid-management levels. However, the figures for senior hires rose dramatically over the last 12-18 months, with 1 in 3 new hires in banking has been at a senior level in some cities.
- London: 20% of new hires are for senior roles, an increase of 5%
- New York: Team/Department Heads were the only area to experience growth in the pandemic (+26%)
- Tokyo: 19% of new hires are at a senior level
- Sydney: 28% of new hires are for senior positions, an increase of 5%
- Paris: 63% growth at Manager-level and above
- Singapore: 31% of new hires are for a senior role
Toby Fowlston, CEO at Robert Walters comments: “The global financial services system is as solid as it was before the pandemic – and much healthier than after the last crisis in 2008 (GFC).
“Whilst the pandemic did not have the expected harmful financial effects on the global banking industry, it has certainly accelerated change in a multitude of other areas. Digital banking boomed whilst cash use fell, savings expanded and credit card debts were paid-off in record time, remote became a way of working, data-capture and usage is a central business function, and environment and sustainability are now front of mind for customers and regulators.”
“All of this change has led to exponential hiring in the sector – with each hub trying to fight for the same talent at the same time, the results being a fiercely competitive recruitment market like we’ve never seen before, with execs being offered over +30-40% pay increases with the option to work from anywhere in the world.”
“As a whole the global financial services sector has made solid strides in gender diversity – with near half of the entry-level workforce in financial services being women.”
“The task now is to equal representation at the top, where in banking less than a quarter of high-level senior positions are held by women. We are seeing some worthy gains been made in this area, and I think the increasing diversity in senior positions will only help to speed up the rapid rate of innovation and change within the sector.”
“Employers will continue to experience challenges in attracting junior analysts and associates as the traditional appeal of working for a large Financial Services organisation now finds itself in a battle with the lure of a career in a start-up or major tech firm.”
“Reputational issues suffered since the GFC and workplace-related perceptions – around hours, flexibility, and culture – will all need to be addressed head on by financial services firms if they want to build out their future talent pipeline.”