Fintech Newsletter November 2020

Market Snapshot across Buy-Side Funds & Investments

What an interesting year it has been to say the least. A solid start to 2020 in terms of hiring into planned system implementation, transformation and integration programs. Then March kicks in and everything came to a grinding halt. The disruption Covid brought had drastic changes for many industries. Healthcare ramped up, restaurants and pubs shut down and financial services companies who were very traditional in their tech set up with desktops and fixed line phones, had to very quickly, set their employees up to work remotely. Some technology and fintech start-ups looking at 2020 to be their year to gain funding from PE / VC firms or foreign investors, would need to wait another year. Companies going IPO were certainly nervous too.

 

We all adapted, for the better. More companies have adopted a solid work from home policy. It’s now part of the interview and onboarding process for many firms. There is far wider work life balance. Managers are now being trained and getting better at managing remotely. Employees don’t want to give off the impression they are slacking off and therefore productivity increases. The sentiment is that this is the reset we all needed.

 

For 6mths there was no grey area. Either companies were hiring to spend their budgets before June 30 or they were on a hiring freeze, as they were rolling budgets into the 2020-2021 financial year from July 1. What this meant, was for the first time in a while, we had the ability to be more targeted in our approach to clients and their recruitment needs.

 

Since Q3, we are seeing our clients back to pre-Covid levels of activity with a lot happening in the buy-side funds and investment space across data visualisation, investment data and development. It looks like 2021 is shaping up to be a busy year.

 

Senior Level Industry Appointments 

CBUS have appointed a new CEO in Justin Arter who moved across from Blackrock.

Thomas Achhorner started as the new CIO of Volt Bank.

Mark Rider is the new CIO of Christian Super.

Willem Popp moved into the Head of Shared Services Technology at Judo Bank.

Andrew Cresp was appointed the new CIO of Bendigo and Adelaide Bank.

Andrew Dimech is now at Australian Payments Network as the Head of Information Technology.

John Knox joins Ares Management as their new chairman, moving from Credit Suisse.

George Confos has been appointed as the CEO of Avenue, a new Australian bank.

 

 Kapital’s Funds & Investment Management placements:

  • 2 x Heads of IT with another at offer stage
  • Head of IT Infrastructure
  • A number of Enterprise Architects and Heads of EA, another at offer stage
  • 4 Investment Data SMEs
  • 3 Snr Buy Side Funds Business Analysts
  • 2 x Desktop Support and Technical Analysts
  • MarkitEDM Developer
  • DevOps & Cloud Support
  • Infrastructure and Security Consultants
  • C#.Net Developers

 

 

Salaries and threats

This has been a very interesting topic over the last few months on a number of levels. At the start of the pandemic, we had more offers turned down than ever before. Simply put, candidates were too nervous to make the switch to a new role, rather than stay in a position where they are a known employee and going into the unknown of what Q2 would bring. Companies were offering more than 20% of the current salary and they were still being turned down. When candidates are going for interviews now, more care is taken by them, to ask about the onboarding process and company expectations. Salaries have certainly gone up. Projects that were on hold have now been given the green light. This has pushed up the demand for good industry talent however, with the reluctance of many candidates to move, supply has decreased pushing up salaries.

 

With the decrease in supply, many companies are starting to look for resources from further afield. Employers have adopted one week in the city, one week from home and there is more scope to use remote workers from interstate. Clients who historically would not consider interstate workers, are now open to remote resources from Hong Kong or Singapore. Some have considered Europe and the States for niche technical and system skillsets however, the time zone still plays a factor in this decision.

 

What we are seeing for 2021

Buy-side funds who had sales staff going out to meet their customers, now have to think of more intuitive ways to get the sell. This is going to demand a more efficient sales distribution team to better utilise visual dashboards through analytics, social media and virtual meetings. There will be a larger onus on solid investment data and visual aids to work this process and we are already seeing this.

 

The disruption of the royal commission and new financial regulation, has brought about big changes and impacts across funds and investments. Client and data reporting tools, are fast becoming a necessity and many clients are bolstering their toolsets in this space to ensure they are highly accurate with all data. Many of whom are implementing data governance frameworks, data analytics platforms and also implementing EDM (enterprise data management) platforms like EaglePace, Curium or MarkitEDM.

 

After the reset and softening of the global economy over the last 6 months, we see 2021 being a pumper year for all our clients.

Till next time.