TabbFORUM: Help Wanted: Capital Markets and Fintech Experts Explain How the Pandemic Is Transforming Hiring and Job Seeking

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In 2020, the nature of work changed tremendously, and possibly forever. The COVID-19 pandemic swept the globe, inflicting rampant unemployment and economic devastation. The new normal created numerous struggles from a hiring perspective, from the unique challenges of sourcing and evaluating talent in a remote environment to the difficulty of filling in-person positions due to the risk of infection and candidates’ reluctance to relocate for those jobs.

The capital markets and institutional fintech space experienced its own unique obstacles in navigating this disruption. While the sector was certainly more fortunate than many industries, 2020 still saw record job losses at institutions like Citigroup and HSBC, and numerous fintechs faced existential challenges. All of this occurred amid a backdrop of unprecedented market volatility, overall economic turmoil and a health crisis that threw the future of work into a state of flux, complicating the process of identifying and addressing personnel needs.

However, as has been the case in many areas throughout the pandemic, it’s not all bad — just different. Despite market-wide unemployment rates that soared in the early spring and then subsided as the economy found its footing, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics last month reported that the number of available jobs increased to 6.6 million openings in December. In addition, a report by global recruiting firm Sheffield Haworth found that there were 251 managing director-level hires at investment banks last year, and that some groups, such as asset managers and boutique banks, significantly increased headcount. These openings suggest the continued importance of recruiting well-matched talent and adapting longstanding practices to meet the moment. To some, they are a welcome reason for optimism.

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