Recruiting outstanding talent is the goal of every talent acquisition team. However, market forces have made that task increasingly difficult. Often candidates are unwilling to leave jobs that have seen them through the pandemic, and those who are looking for new opportunities are often the subject of bidding wars. Even highly desirable businesses, like Fintech SMEs, are having a hard time finding enough people with the right skill set for their companies. Ultimately, these candidates command a premium and, as a business, you may very well offer and exceed their expectations, however, that still may not be enough to sway them to work for you. So, in a skills' drought, what can your business do to attract the best talent for your Fintech start-up or SME? Understand the candidate’s motives As a Senior Recruitment Consultant, who specialises in the Fintech market, I have multiple conversations a day about the cons of working for a start-up vs. a large organisation. Some of the key themes from these conversations include:1. Potential lack of learning and development in a smaller business2. Fewer opportunities to progress in SMEs3. Less opportunity for flexible working and longer working hours4. Not enough employee benefits5. Less job security in a start-upYes, there are risks that come with joining a smaller business, but start-ups are some of the most progressive and creative businesses around. Remuneration, employee benefits and job security are only some of the motivators for people in their working life. People often work at start-ups because they believe in the mission or product, not necessarily for financial gain or job security. Make your job opportunity stand out from the crowd Recruiting top talent in the Fintech market is difficult, every hire is integral and can make or break your company. With budgets being a big concern for many businesses, you need to think strategically about how you present jobs to potential candidates. A job advert is not a list of responsibilities. Companies need to understand who they want to attract with the job advertisement. A well put together job advert, which covers all of the essential qualities the candidate needs to possess to be successful and what you can offer them in return, is a great starting point. Utilise websites like Gender Decoder to ensure your job adverts are gender neutral and consider using SEO practices to attract better quality and more diverse candidates.Showcase your employer brand Candidates want to know what it is like to work for a company before they work for them. Attracting candidates whose values and work style align with those of your company will make your recruitment process smoother, as you won’t have to sift through candidate profiles that aren’t a match in any way. It also works the other way around. Candidates who don’t like what they see will deselect themselves from the selection process. To ensure you’re getting candidates who fit in your company, showcase your company culture through as many channels as possible and communicate why you’re a great place to work." Boost retention and retain talentRetaining talent is an essential component of acquiring talent. The Fintech industry is compact and well-connected. One person’s poor experience with your organisation could have a damaging impact on your ability to hire new people. Therefore, ensuring there is a keen focus on developing and retaining talent is a must if you want to recruit successfully for your Fintech SME. ● Incentives Start-ups and SMEs are often disadvantaged when it comes to their ability to incentivise their employee’s roles, and provide the type of working environments, benefits and conditions that incentivise employees to stay long-term. This is because start-ups may not always be able to compete with large organisations on remuneration, benefits and bonuses. Therefore, it is essential to see appropriate and financially sustainable incentives as a cornerstone of talent acquisition and retention.● Training and progressionSome SMEs might shirk the cost of training, however learning opportunities often lead to increased productivity. Furthermore, employees are much more likely to stay with a business if they can see a clear progression and development plan. And whilst there is always the risk that if you train your employees and enhance their education, that they will leave, if you don’t offer a clear progression and training route, they are even less likely to hang around. ● Welcome feedback You should actively seek feedback from your people around the business. The people on the frontline of your organisation are often the ones best placed to provide insight into business performance. Moreover, employees who are engaged and feel heard often stay in their roles longer. Ask for help The average employee exit costs 33% of their annual salary. However, some studies have found that the real cost of making a bad hire is closer to £130k! This is taking into account the loss of talent, time, recruitment fees, training and decreased productivity. A high turnover rate can cripple a start-up or SME. It is essential that as a business, small or large, that you don’t fall into a pattern of making bad hires. There are several routes to acquire talent, such as referrals, ex-colleagues, and reaching out to connections, which are advantageous. However, scaling and growing a business on the back of referrals is time-consuming, and there are fewer safety nets in place if the hire isn’t quite right. That is why engaging the services of specialist recruitment consultancies, like Marks Sattin, is essential. We don’t just find you your next hire, we are uniquely placed to consult with businesses on hiring trends, candidate behaviour and best talent attraction methods for your business. And the best part is, it won’t cost you anything until we have made a placement.You can read our previously published article on the pros and cons of taking recruitment in-house. If you would like to discuss any of the above, please don’t hesitate to reach out to me.
Content TypeCareer Advice
In 2021, 68% of businesses are prioritising recruiting candidates directly to their companies. However, this is not always best for the jobseeker and their candidate experience. In some cases, the disruption in the economy, caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and the increased volume of job applications has led to an absence of feedback during the recruitment process. I speak with many people who feel frustrated due to the shortage of responses and lack of meaningful feedback, both from recruiters and direct applications and interviews. Below we have detailed a great strategy on how you can achieve better engagement from organisations after applying for a vacancy. Make yourself known If I was to ask any hiring manager, “what are the top three qualities you look for in a candidate?” Most of them would say: A positive attitude towards workA good cultural fit for the business and the teamSomeone who is keen to get stuck in to a project or business So, before you apply for a role, identify the business’ website and social media pages and ascertain the business culture and think about what you can contribute. Next, find the relevant hiring manager or a person from the talent acquisition team. Send them a message on why you would like to work there and why you believe you are a good fit for the role. Use Glassdoor, LinkedIn and relevant FinTech articles to inform your message. Look at what they are working on and ask yourself - how could I add value? You don't need to cover every point, but make sure it is relevant and appropriate. This tactic will show that you have a positive can-do attitude, you are passionate about your work and you’re engaged with their business. This will increase the likelihood of them meaningfully engaging with you in the application process. Ensure your CV is the best it can be Producing a stand-out CV could be a whole article on its own! But we do have some straightforward tips for you to get started: Always use job descriptions to tailor your CV for the role you are applying for. Use the job description to cover off relevant experience, key achievements and highlight your essential skills.Job applications are not a numbers game. To increase the chances of hiring managers engaging with you, focus on producing a high quality application as opposed to a high volume application.Make sure your CV is easily readable. Time is precious to hiring managers, meaning most CV’s are reviewed promptly, so make sure it is formatted appropriately and you have checked the document thoroughly for any mistakes.You should clearly bullet point main details and key achievements. This means that essential factors are not missed. Credibility- it’s a powerful thing! CVs, applications and interviews are an opportunity where you can demonstrate the skills you have. Anybody can say they are an expert in something, but how many people go far enough to prove it? Use statistics, previous performance reviews, LinkedIn recommendations and GitHub to evidence and embed your credibility. This will increase the likelihood of them engaging with your job application." Ensure you're prepared for the interviewAgain, this is something I could spend some time going in to detail explaining. However, a few key points would be:What’s their innovation?Who are their competitors? When were they founded?Who is conducting the interview? What is their background? You may be asked directly what research have you conducted. So, if you can demonstrate knowledge on their market, you will be showing initiative and where you can add value. Close the interview like a Pro Every interview ends with your chance to ask questions. People always remember a good closing question! This gives you the opportunity to gather all the information you need to make a decision on whether you are interested in the role. Ask what you need to, but take this as an opportunity to build rapport. If they haven’t covered it already, ask them: How long have they worked for the business?How have they found it, compared to their previous employer? Rapport is a key tool in your arsenal, we all want to work with people we find pleasant. I would also prepare other questions including: challenges they face in the role currently, what are the key factors they are looking for from this person? Follow up In the wise words from my mum: "manners cost nothing". Following an interview, an email thanking the hiring manager for their time, the positives you have taken away and why you think you’re a good fit for the role is a nice touch that will make them remember you. It is key to remember you are representing your own brand. You should make an effort to leave a positive impression; one impression can be a hundred impressions. The FinTech community is small and people talk. I have plenty more tips and tricks up my sleeve, so feel free to contact me for advice on how to secure your next FinTech role and keep an eye on our website, we have new vacancies coming in daily!
An overwhelming 76% of people believe robots or AI devices could replace them at work, or at least do 50% of their job. While this is not entirely unreasonable to think, it suggests that our workforce may be experiencing tunnel vision - focusing on the negative impacts that AI and robotics will have rather than seeing the potential it will unlock for them. In truth, technology will claim a lot of tasks and this will affect employees in all sectors, some more than others. Thankfully, within the technology sector, AI will allow professionals to become more creative, upskill and reduce the monotony of their job. To do so, technology professionals must exhibit adaptability and consider how they can collaborate with robotics and AI.Robotics and AI are a threat to some, but not allMcKinsey predicts that 49% of tasks completed by the global workforce have the potential to be automated. One of the reports key takeaways is that robotics and AI are expected to automate 49% of activities, but not the entire job - currently very few jobs could be entirely transferred to robots. The first technology jobs we’d expect to become automated are ticket routing and data entry, but that still leaves data protection, IT analysis, cloud services and many more roles safe from being automated any time soon. The report lists ‘accommodation and food services’ tasks as most likely to become automated with a likelihood of 73%, ‘finance and insurance’ tasks gain a score of 43% while ‘information’ ranks far lower at a likelihood of just 36%. Assuming this assessment to be correct, only a third of information-based activities will fall into the hands of robots. The tasks less likely to be reassigned to robots are those requiring interaction with stakeholders, the use of judgment to make decisions, delegation and creativity. The broad spectrum of these activities reassures us that most jobs will remain in human hands, but the question remains - how will robotics and AI impact the workload of technology jobs? Time will tellThe pace of technological development is exponential: in just five years the cost of a lab-grown meat-free burger dropped from £215,000 to £8. However, when it comes to AI and automation it will be decades before we begin to see the full potential. PwC quantifies this view, reporting that only 3% of jobs risk becoming automated in the early years of this decade, but that jumps to 30% by the mid-2030s. Currently, technology can outperform humans regarding information retrieval, large-scale motor skills and optimisation but we’re only just understanding the emerging applications of AI as it becomes more sophisticated. According to McKinsey, one factor that will delay the adoption of AI in the workplace is the “cost of developing and deploying”. While there is a relatively high possibility of restaurant jobs becoming automated, the decision will depend on the costs associated, considering cooks in the UK earn an hourly wage of £7.83 on average. Therefore, it may not be cost-effective for some time to replace kitchen staff with robotics or AI, at least until the price of this technology drops below the cost of labour. Now consider the technology sector where general IT staff earn £21.81 hourly and this rate rises significantly for managerial roles and architects. It becomes more appealing to replace employees in roles where there is a higher labour cost associated, but don’t forget that information tasks are less likely to become automated. So, though the threat of robotics and AI to technology jobs may appear real, there is still ample time for professionals to adjust to the changes. How robotics and AI will reshape jobs within technologyA recent Deloitte report found that 82% of large UK companies are adopting AI yet just 15% are ‘seasoned’ implementors. The rapid pace at which technology is developing is creating an AI skills gap. Evidently, this is not a threat but an opportunity for IT professionals. Though, as AI becomes more sophisticated, its role will transition from simple automation to software development. Companies such as Data Robot and H2O.ai have matured their AI tools so they can write code - a task that just years ago we thought was far too complex for a machine to perform, but the introduction of bottom-up AI helped it become a reality. While top-down AI aims to pre-programme a machine with every layer of human cognition, bottom-up trains technology to build complex understanding from a foundation of simple methods. The good news is that using this approach, AI software - such as TabNine - can now suggest possible endings for code and thereby boost a developer’s productivity. This just one example of how AI can be used to reduce monotony and free up time for technology professionals. What can a robot do that you can do better?Robotics and machine have their limits, though they are closing the gap when it comes to particular skills, and in some instances, they are outperforming us on tasks where we naively thought we’d always have the upper hand. Technology professionals must demonstrate to stakeholders and upper management their ability to navigate and direct within the dynamic technology landscape. To do so they must identify which aspects of their role are easily automatable, then innovate the process. In the face of automation, technology professionals have the chance to take actions that will influence the future of their company and become more valuable employees than ever. Working with robots and not againstCollaboration is key here. Those who learn how AI can transform their work and use it to their advantage will earn the most valuable technology jobs. It is an opportunity for programmers, software developers and project managers to upskill and reduce the monotony of their work. In light of the changes that are taking place, technology professionals must become technology advisors, learn to speak the language of robots and, most importantly, nurture workplace relationships. Discover where you can take your career with Marks SattinAt Marks Sattin, we have been working with specialist IT talent for over 30 years. Our established team of IT recruiters have a well-earned reputation of being proactive and meticulous in their approach to sourcing top talent. For more information on how we match candidates with the right client, contact us. Browse our latest technology jobs or view vacancies in our other specialisms, including financial services and commerce & industry.
There has been significant change in the IT market over the past 12 months and it is continually evolving. The rise of GDPR, data protection, information security and data analytics demonstrate that companies, both large and small, are taking IT compliance seriously and are using IT as a measurable business enabler and not just a support function. The visible impact that cloud services software has had on headcount growth reflects how companies are taking full advantage of the myriad of choices they have to structure their IT functions. IT infrastructure & Cloud Services The last 12 months has seen significant growth in demand for cloud services skill sets. The IT infrastructure space continues to rapidly change as organisations are ever reliant on strong networks, systems and infrastructure to underpin their operations and are looking to off-premises cloud services that afford them the flexibility and agility a modern business needs. Subsequently we saw an increase of over 40% in the number of roles that required specific cloud based expertise. Business Intelligence & Analytics The business intelligence and data analytics market has seen widespread growth throughout last year and remained stable so far this year with only a slight decline in activity at senior level. The uncertainty of Brexit played a part in the decline, as did the outsourcing of company teams and locations. Project & Programme Management Project and programme management requirements within the technology space have proven strong over the past 12 months. It is apparent that there has been an increasing need for professionals to drive and support data, applications and software transformations within businesses. Analysis With Brexit posing a threat to job security, one thing is for sure: business analysts will be more important than ever. We are seeing companies merge and even divest in order to solidify their financial position for the uncertainty ahead. These processes will require business analysts in order to carry out large data migrations or system changes. Significant tax and regulatory changes this year have also heightened demand for business analysts to help organisations bring their processes in line with new regulations. Data Protection General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) were the words on everyone’s lips approaching the May 25th deadline last year. In fact a survey released by the European Union stated the phrase ‘GDPR’ was searched on Google more times in May 2018 than ‘Beyoncé Knowles’! Due to this flurry of activity the market remained buoyant throughout last year, especially in the initial half, as SME businesses and large organisations were required to appoint a Data Protection Officer (DPO) in order to oversee all data protection queries, get processes aligned to the act, and report any incidents or breaches to the Information Commissioners office (ICO). Architecture The last 12 months saw consistency in terms of employment rates and sentiment in the market. Given the project based nature of architecture, the market continued to be led by contractors looking to gain further exposure in new environments with new challenges, and with relocation being an ever-present conversation. There has been a lack of movement of permanent senior level professionals, with only 20% of our head of architecture contacts saying they would feel confident to move roles within the six months. This trend is expected to continue due to the uncertainty of the current political climate. Information Security & Cyber Security Over the past year the information security and cyber security market has been developing and is now considered one of the most prominent areas within technology. There have been three key indicators that the market is developing. Download the full Technology 2019 Market Insight Report » View salaries and commentaries in other UK regions and Ireland »
The role of the CDO is being discussed more than ever before. Although the role has existed for the past 20+ years, job boards and LinkedIn were not as prevalent, and therefore the role did not have much exposure outside organisations. When you think of the CDO job title, I think the word ‘data’ would spring to mind for most people, because shouldn’t data be the main driver of most decisions made by the c-suite? However, it appears to be that the modern CDO is becoming less about pure data, in contrast to other analytics and business intelligence roles who are predominantly technical (refer to my previous blog on the ambiguity of analytics and business intelligence), and more of a holistic role encompassing areas like risk, compliance and even marketing. Of course, as a senior executive, strategy and operations will play a huge part of the role, as they do in all board level roles however, it may be worth noting the possibility of the role of a CDO being diluted. If I put myself in a candidate’s shoes, someone who has always had a data driven role and then opts to take on a new challenge of CDO, would they miss the lack of focus in their previous position, or would they welcome the change? I think the answer is in why the person might take a CDO opportunity. For example, if you have reached a plateau in your role as ‘Business Intelligence/Analytics Director’, and your only means of career progression is to take a CDO role, then you possibly would not enjoy the variety of the role. For others, a route that has direct progression into a more strategic role, that delves away from the pure technical work that was once pivotal to their career may be deemed as a step in the right direction. So, a question to my network… is the role of the CDO a clear career step for a data professional, and should it stay as an all-encompassing position, or be more data driven?
We sat down with my latest business intelligence candidate for a Q&A about her background, how she moved into Business Intelligence & Analytics, and her thoughts about the future of the field. What was your background before getting into Business Intelligence (BI) / Analytics? After seven years in the military working with information systems, I left and joined a Swiss bank as a technical analyst creating multiple types of reporting. What motivated you to get into the BI / Analytics field? I was made redundant from my role in the recession in the early 2000’s, and was offered a consultancy role for a hedge fund custodian. What is the biggest change you have seen in BI / Analytics in the last 3-5 years? The most fundamental change is probably the trend to move from highly structured data on residential mortgage-backed security (RMBS) databases to the utilisation of semi-structured and unstructured data using the new breed, such as ‘not only structured query language’ (NoSQL) and cloud databases. What is your biggest BI achievement within your career? Building a complete management information system (MIS) or geographic information system (GIS) for a hedge fund custodian with a portfolio of 250 billion assets under custody. Where do you think BI & Data Analytics will be 5 -10 years from now? BI and Analytics is moving rapidly towards more pervasive analysis of behaviours and sentiment of both customers and staff alike in order to In your opinion – what is the best BI Vendor currently in the market and why? I have had experience with a wide variety of BI / Analytics, from small solutions such as SlamData, through to Tableau and DataWatch. All of these solutions have their place in the ecosystem of BI Tools; for me there is yet to be a clear winner due to the large variation in cost and time of deployment. In your opinion, which division do you think BI should fall under within an organisation? I suppose that depends on your perspective. Although the infrastructure of any BI / Analytics platform should be owned and supported by IT, the reporting and business logic therein should rightly be owned by the business – maybe it’s time to create a new division? What do you think the next trend in BI / Data will be, & what impact will that have? With the pervasive power of social media and the current issues regarding privacy, the pendulum of public opinion is likely to swing towards the other extreme with a backlash against these large platforms. Since the recent allegations of social media swaying public opinion in politics and voting, I believe that the public face of BI and Analytics will be portrayed as a move towards the protection of national security and anti-terrorism. To view our Business Intelligence & Analytics career opportunities, click here
Data is arguably one of the most critical elements of an organisation – how can we drive a business forward by effectively understanding our customers and our clients without data insights, analysis and management? It may sound like a lot to get your head around if you’re in a business that isn’t as close to their data as they would like to be, what’s the solution? – Business Intelligence. Business intelligence is a technology-driven tool that transforms data into actionable results - aiding all elements of the business, whether strategic, operational, or financial (or usually all three). There are numerous business intelligence applications and vendors on the market today which, used combined, or individually have the potential to revolutionise the way organisations manage and use their data. Companies understand how integral data is, hence the increase in business intelligence adoption and the increase in business intelligence roles. Whilst we once had the holistic ‘Data Manager’ role, we are now seeing Business Intelligence Managers / Directors and Analytics Directors, through to Developers, Analysts and even vendor specialist roles. Although we see an even spread of business intelligence and analytics roles, the increase in senior level roles is soaring since around Q3 2018. Perhaps this is due to the heavy adoption of BI in companies; organisations are re-structuring to accommodate business intelligence business units. As the demand for business intelligence has grown and its function expands within organisations, so too has the various denotations of the term. As a recruitment consultant who specialises in the business intelligence space, and studied analytics at university, I find there’s ambiguity on how we define business intelligence – what some call analytics, others call big data, while others simply use the all-encompassing term of ‘business intelligence’. I am keen to find out from the business intelligence professionals in my network; do we have one definition for business intelligence and what it symbolises? Or does it depend on the organisation, sector, or purpose of what we are trying to do with our data? If you would like to browse our current tech roles or get in touch with us, visit our dedicated Technology page.
Content TypeMarket Insight Reports
View technology market salaries. Download the full Business Change & Technology 2018 Market Insight Report here » TECHNOLOGY Job title Salary range Day rate Head of IT/IT Director/CTO £95,000 - £155,000 £800 - £1,350 Programme Manager £60,000 - £100,000 £500 - £850 Project Manager £40,000 - £70,000 £400 - £650 IT Manager £40,000 - £60,000 £350 - £500 Development Manager £45,000 - £65,000 £400 - £550 Test/QA Manager £40,000 - £65,000 £400 - £650 Information Security Manager £50,000 - £95,000 £400 - £750 Architect £50,000 - £100,000 £400 - £850 Business Analyst £40,000 - £70,000 £350 - £700 Tester £35,000 - £50,000 £300 - £500 Security Analyst £35,000 - £65,000 £350 - £550 GDPR/Data Protection £50,000 - £150,000 £400 - £1,000 Infrastructure Support £25,000 - £45,000 £200 - £400 Developer £35,000 - £60,000 £350 - £500 IT Administrator £30,000 - £55,000 £300 - £450 View London salaries in other sectors within business change & technology here »
The intelligent use of new technology could add a great deal of value to the finance function within businesses and free up staff to get involved with other areas of their organisation, according to a new report from the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). Chief financial officers (CFOs) and their departments are currently not exploiting technological advances to their full potential, the study found. It drew on the opinions of experts at leading firms such as Shell, Aviva, Kimberly-Clark, Deloitte and Accenture, suggesting that the "complex and fragmented" nature of the modern IT landscape is preventing CFOs from embracing all it can offer. Jamie Lyon, head of the corporate sector at ACCA, suggested behaviour, vision and culture all need to change within the finance sector if tech is to be utilised properly. "Leading companies have deployed technology to improve finance service delivery to the business, but the primary focus has really been around cost, efficiency and quality in transactional finance," he explained. While this can certainly be useful, there are other ways CFOs can modernise their approach, with self-service finance and automating transactional finance processes all possibilities, argued Mr Lyon. Deborah Kops, principal at Sourcing Change and co-author of the report, argued that mining data can be very important for the industry, improving its predictive powers and allowing it to engage more closely with consumers or fellow businesses. "We should also acknowledge that the application of technology has the potential to change further what a finance career means," she declared. If more processes are to be automated in the future, traditional jobs could be fundamentally altered, meaning professionals will need to consider how their skill-set prepares them for a different kind of career in the finance sector. Despite concerns over data security, technology investment is on the up among finance firms as they attempt to improve efficiency levels across their operation. All staff need to be aware of the importance of keeping personal information safe if firms are to avoid fines and reputational damage.