Fintech and the War for Talent
Fintechs & new banking models have created an unparalleled competition for talent:
Acouple of months back, FIS retained the top spot in IDC Fintech 100 world rankings for 2018. With almost one third of its employee strength in India, FIS was honored to be at the top of this global ranking. It validated the in-country investment strategy to create a powerful workforce that solved critical problems from financial institutions around the world. There is a lot of promise for market watchers who are following the phenomenal growth of Fintech as an industry across the world and especially from a region like India.
There are myriad opportunities that a booming Fintech industry is throwing open to the talent market. The ‘War for Talent’ has dramatically intensified in the recent years in a highly crowded and competitive space. Some of the largest Banks and Financial Institutions are arming themselves up with a variety of strategies including setting up of Innovation Labs, sponsoring intrapreneurship by focusing on select employees displaying qualities of an entrepreneur, research facilities and scouting for active acquisition of nimble fintech start-ups - to not only keep their flock together but also showcase themselves as attractive career destination.
On the other hand, some of the more agile start-ups, loaded with cash from angel investors continue to take these large financial services and investment banking firms head on. Unlike, popular perception, their value proposition is not only focused towards millennials but packs an equal punch in weaning away leadership talent from large behemoths too. On offer, is a ‘highly infectious’ work environment, a ‘once in a lifetime’ chance to create a ‘legacy’. This is possible as they are provided with an environment which facilitates higher risk-taking appetite, empowerment and instant decision making, something that a multi-layered, hierarchical, large sized organization would find it difficult to offer.
As some of the next generation technologies fuel the growth of Fintech beyond the traditional payment focus and moving in broader areas of personal finance and lending, the War for Talent is poised to intensify further.
The rumble happening in the talent market ring
The growing fintech situation in India has been driven by factors such as governmental focus on financial inclusion and less cash economy. This has spurred a revolution where innovative banking models such as small finance banks, payment banks and direct banks have been created in a short span, where none existed a few years back. This has created a large talent pool that is unparalleled elsewhere in the world. If there is a talent challenge that is faced by global talent acquisition teams, they are sure to find it in India!
Investing in Employer Branding
A sustained effort is required in positioning the organization in two markets- the customer market and the job market. There must be synergy and partnership between the marketing team and the talent acquisition team to create a strong corporate brand that positively contributes to the employer branding efforts attracting job applications. The messaging on recruitment portals must encourage applicants from various demographic groups to apply for the job. If no suitable job match exists, once registered, a prospective candidate must get proactive job alerts, updates and notifications of opportunities from the portal.
In constant need of wood, growing your own forests
A lot of has been written about campus hiring and the scramble for sweeping the technical and management institutes on day ‘zero’. Talent teams must make a conscious effort to take a more balanced approach to the race to acquire talent. What makes the approach unique at FIS is the consistency across management levels to maintain a mandated 10% intake of all entry level jobs as graduate trainees. Talent must grow grounds up. The focus throws open a host of opportunities to the aspiring talent in the market where one could offer independence of a start-up or the depth and maturity of a leading MNC and in some cases- both!
Using Technology to meet hiring needs
Being in a tech world, one can also invest in tech solutions for hiring needs, for e.g. a video interviewing tool - Montage. A significant amount of time is wasted by the average recruiter in operational tasks such as scheduling and coordinating for interviews. The tool provides capabilities for ‘on-demand’ and ‘live’ interviewing, which results in giving back time to the recruiter to focus on the human aspects of the job, which includes interacting with the candidate and stakeholders. The best part is this tool caters to all demographic segments since it is also app based and can integrate assessments.
The future of Fintech players is going to be driven by their ability to attract and keep its talent. If we innovate and inculcate tech and automation as also strengthen our brand consistently, one can continue to lead the Fintech industry by its ability to attract, create and retain thought leaders in this space.