PROCUREMENT HEADS BLOG

Financial services jobs continue to rise, but skills shortages plague employers’ ability to find talent

Recruitment within the financial services sector in England and Wales reached record highs in 2021, with nearly 80,000 vacancies posted and continued growth expected for the remainder of the year.

That’s according to new research from the Association of Professional Staffing Companies (APSCo), the trade association for the recruitment sector.

The data, provided by business intelligence specialist Vacancysoft, reveals that London holds the majority of vacancies in the financial services arena, accounting for 57.5% of all job listings, with a record-breaking 5,160 published in October alone.

However, the South East is experiencing faster growth, showing an increase of 0.8 percentage points, causing London’s share of vacancies to fall by 1.6 percentage points. Meanwhile, the West Midlands experienced the slowest growth with the region’s share of vacancies falling by 0.9 percentage points.

IT professionals dominate the hiring landscape within financial services, accounting for 33% of all vacancies with over 26,400 published this year so far. This is in keeping with the widely documented IT skills shortages which are hampering employers’ ability to source talent.

Banking specialists are the second most sought after, seeing a 96.9% increase over the last year, while vacancies for consultants are the fastest-growing, with current volumes exceeding last year’s totals by 30%.

Elsewhere, JPMorgan Chase is the busiest recruiter within the sector, publishing over 3,700 jobs to date resulting in a 101% year-on-year increase, which could be part of its commitment to making a full global recovery in 2022. NatWest experienced the fastest growth, with hiring levels up 272.3% when compared to 2020 data.

Ann Swain, CEO of APSCo, said, “The rise in vacancies for the financial sector is a promising end to another challenging year and has certainly set the sector up for a strong start in 2022. However, it is no secret that we are dealing with a sector-wide skills shortage with Covid, the Great Resignation and Brexit exacerbating this issue. If employers hope to fill these vacancies, then it is crucial that the UK’s ongoing skills shortage is addressed.”

James Dobbin, Head of Practice for Financial and Professional services at Procurement Heads, added, “The demand for Consultants has been unprecedented this year and is showing no signs of slowing down. Traditionally, this time of year the market tends to tail off, but as we enter the final week before Christmas the market is as buoyant as it has been all year.”

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James Dobbin