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Does the financial services industry have a digital skill shortage?

Does the financial services industry have a digital skill shortage?

The financial sector is rapidly evolving and technology is substantially transforming the industry, disrupting established players and new entrants alike. A recent survey suggested that half of consumers now use money transfer and payment services and this is set to rise, pushing digital to the top of the agenda.

As artificial intelligence and machine learning reinvigorate the industry, do financial institutions have the personnel to cope with such enormous change, and make a success of it?

Digital London: A capital of innovation

News of a financial service evacuation from the City of London to Europe have often appeared in the headlines after the EU referendum. While there’s some cause for caution, this seems rather premature.

There’s no hesitancy that London, as a financial hub, possesses some of the world’s most talented financial professionals. It’s a magnet for talent – with or without Brexit. However, what the nation lacks is the skillset in order to transform it in line with the digital revolution. Businesses now require back-end expertise that will enable them to recognise and apply technology.

Nowadays, most modern managers utilise a solid knowledge of how to incorporate AI developments into business models. This is in addition to being able to employ and channel the emergence of new technology, and the ensuing sharing of customer data between financial institutions.

From problem to opportunity

So now that we know the challenges, how can companies respond to this rapidly expanding digital revolution? There’s been an increased number of interim managers with technological expertise, crossing over into the financial sector. These managers are flexible, adaptable professionals and able to lead the digital transformation in order to bridge knowledge gaps.

This digital transformation is not just confined to technology roles though – across the industry, financial directors and professionals are recognising that a deep awareness of digital advances increases their perceived worth internally as well as their own market value. We expect that institutions’ best profit revenues will be enhanced if not generated by their technological offerings for customers. As such, any financial directors pinpointing and championing this approach will be considered high-value.

The finance sector is expected to see resourcing challenges ahead in its race to catch up with technology. One thing is certain: all financial professionals will need to adopt digital innovations to stay ahead of the market and at the top of their game, no matter where that expertise comes from.

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