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Sales and Marketing Market Commentary, Q2 2015

• Article by BRUIN Financial

Sales and Marketing Market Commentary, Q2 2015

MARKET OVERVIEW

The second quarter of the financial year has seen a steady flow of movement within the Sales and Marketing space with a strong emphasis on candidates in the marketing field on the temporary side, whilst the focus on the permanent side was more on increasing sales headcounts.

The continuous discussion on the importance of branding has had a major effect on the marketing sector as a whole, which was extensively discussed by the several Head of EMEA marketing at our Marketing Breakfast Seminar in the end of May. The market has also seen a rise in digital jobs which was predicted in the last quarter.

The ongoing debate on the diversity within the workplace has been reinforced since the controversial “endangered female fund manager” reached headlines. Research concluded that only 7 per cent of UK funds are managed or co-managed by women with another finding that showed a male domination on front-office positions. Investors have vowed to raise diversity on all-male heavy FTSE250 boards which should hopefully draw the debate to a close.

With next summer’s referendum in close approach, a large area of discussion has been on Britain’s financial stability and the effect on the job market if the UK decides to opt out of Europe in the ‘Brexit’ debate. A series of controversial views have reached headlines with some arguing that the economy will be poorer which will ultimately put a strain on the job market as the country depends heavily on large European firms.

Following on from last quarters attack on ETF’s by legendary investor John Bogle, the Exchange traded fund assets passed the $3tn mark for the first time, repositioning the product in a more positive light. Within Europe, both investors and firms have high hopes for the product as inflows have poured in at a record rate. Providers of ETF’s marked the 15th anniversary of the products launch in Europe, however, the celebration put into perspective the consistency of the products inflow compared to its success in the US.

ROLE PROFILES

In an attempt by asset managers to remain competitive, a number of companies are currently going through periods of change. Diversification and innovation are leading the way in change methodologies, leading to hiring across the board. With the sales and marketing department often the tip of the spear in these departments are being bulked up in order to raise the profile of these funds and grow AUM.

More specifically, sales teams are hiring at a senior level in regions that they have not traditionally sold within; this is leading to greenfield roles becoming common place for us. The UK is also following suit, consumer confidence is increasing and incomes at mid to senior level are beginning to return to the pre crash highs. Investors are looking for secure ways to grow their wealth in low risk products. This is leading to the rapid increase in the retail investment sector and translating to the hiring of regional sales people along with the sales support juniors that go hand in hand. On the marketing side, innovation is leading the way and marketing departments are trying to find pioneering ways to engage with potential customers. In recruitment terms, this is being driven by rebranding projects and digital teams.

Our volume in digital marketing has been high, numerous firms are sighting this space as the future, with speculation that digital marketing and customer engagement on the retail investor side could go as far as commercial banking.

In terms of product, ETF’s are still leading the way- their popularity has continued to grow at a steady pace passing the $3tn investment mark earlier this month. Overall, the Sales and Marketing space within Asset Management has remained an extremely candidate driven. Strong candidates will regularly have their pick of opportunities and companies are being required to have the flexibility to move very quickly for their desired candidates. Finally, despite widespread dissatisfaction with poor performance and high fees, hedge funds have still remained a popular option for institutional investors – this is an area we can only see expanding in coming years and have already begun to see volume within.