Over the past decade, the financial services industry has faced significant workforce challenges including changing employee demographics, increased competition for top-level talent and an evolution in the nature of the work itself, as technologies such as artificial intelligence become more mainstream. These rapid changes have illuminated the need for the continual training and reskilling of workers, particularly when it comes to technology.
To meet the demands of the changing financial services industry, organizations are seeking new ways to grow and support their workers’ development of hard and soft skills, especially in their information technology (IT) departments. For example, a 2018 survey by Peak10 found that 76% of financial institutions (FIs) have created new IT roles in the last two years. However, half of all financial institutions report they are finding it “difficult” or “very difficult” to hire enough IT talent to fill these positions.
At the same time, the cloud has become the dominant technology platform for the financial services industry. Many institutions are moving away from on-premises servers and hardware to Software as a Service (SaaS), Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) and Platform as a Service (PaaS) IT models, allowing them to attain greater flexibility, reduce expenses and increase speed to market.
To ensure their talent keeps up with technology, organizations should commit to continual professional development through training, workshops and other opportunities. Encouraging employee growth and learning can be accomplished through a variety of methods, including compensation, promotion and public recognition. Perhaps the biggest incentive, however, is in providing workers with the opportunities to use their new skills on the job. For instance, offering technology workers opportunities to deepen their knowledge and become adept in platforms such as Salesforce and nCino is a way to keep employees engaged and motivated.
Another tactic is to regularly rotate employees through a variety of business and technology roles. This approach offers FIs the dual benefits of deepening workers’ skillsets and providing them with opportunities to collaborate with colleagues in other departments and positions. The result? A deep bench of employees armed with the skills and expertise to adapt to an environment of continuous change.
Faced with the convergence of numerous disruptive forces including changing career expectations, growing competition from mega-tech firms and the rising use of automation, cognitive technologies and cloud-based software, one thing is clear: a combination of technology and talent is the key to a future-ready workforce.
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