Role Profiles

The interim Compliance market did not show signs of delay through Q4 in terms of staffing requirements in the sector. There were signs of a return to normal recruitment cycles as we saw perhaps the more traditional Christmas slowdown. This slowdown could be in part due to ominous recession clouds gathering over the city. We are anticipating the macro picture to be difficult in the coming year with the resultant impact on resources allocation likely being organisations using tools such as hiring freezes and using alternate budgets to plug gaps through off-payroll workers.

In terms of the sort of teams that have been bolstered in Q4, it has very much been the quarter for generalists. Clients have sought candidates who can cover tasks across the compliance function. Generally, this has meant Clients requesting candidates who are coming out of generalist graduate schemes or junior positions with perhaps 1-2 years of experience. The issue with this is perhaps relatively clear when compared to macro events. 2 years of experience puts candidates exactly in the 2020 grad cohort at which time, companies were issuing hiring freezes, at the graduate level at a rate never seen before. This means that there is a significant gap in the market for these candidates. As a result, they saw astronomical salary increases, on the permanent side, we would see candidates reach up to £75k after 2 years and on the temp side, we would see rates of £350-400/day for the candidate.

These have mellowed somewhat but in the clamour for talent, some candidates will find themselves on highly inflated salaries for years to come. This will pose problems as firms grapple to re-evaluate salary ranges across the board. Candidates are also astute to rising costs which are impacting their expectations. Traditional methods of benchmarking are likely outdated, traditionally, a candidate can expect an increase between 10-15% for a shrewd move. We have seen candidates exceeding a 30% increase on a base for a move in the current market.



Across the market, there is likely to be an increase in candidate availability. This is owing to a slate of redundancies across financial services as organisations look to head into a recession with lean teams. Unfortunately, in the Compliance area, organisations are already approaching this period with lean teams. As a result of this, there have been fewer redundancies in this space meaning we may not see candidate availability increase which has happened in other areas.


Core Compliance

Owing to so much movement in the market last year, in particular in the permanent space, organisations have found themselves with very ‘green’ teams in the compliance space which may require support. These consultants will need to be senior to provide support to a wider team, potentially in several functions. Functions, where this will be particularly prevalent, will be across the monitoring function (in particular guideline monitoring). We are also anticipating advisory teams needing support across various product lines. This is because we saw a record number of fund launches last year, in particular UCITs (Irish and Lux in particular).

We are also anticipating more demand at the junior end of the market. This will be challenging in the current market unless organisations are willing to consider alternative options. Please do reach out to us to explore these options. We understand that there are bespoke requirements which will need to be explored and tailored to your organisation, this is something we can assist with. A recent example of this sort of bespoke solution is where we have placed a senior operations team leader in a compliance team. This worked as the candidate was able to support the juniors in the team and was able to grasp the fundamentals of compliance very quickly owing to working with compliance regularly for 10 years.


Financial Crime

The fallout from the sanctions regime on Russia and its allies is still ongoing. Organisations have generally got to grips with the regimes and have adjusted to the extra scrutiny. In light of the difficult economic outlook, we may see a further clampdown on Russian finance in the city. The likely impact from a staffing perspective is minimal as organisations are generally well-prepared for these outcomes. Within Financial crime/ transaction reporting, we are generally seeing a return to business as usual as organisations reach normal cycles of remediation as well as bolstering teams.

We can support across the financial crime space, last year we supported a large bank in filling a remediation team of 15 and so have several high-calibre candidates in this space. We also supported consultancy when for an asset management project with several transaction monitoring candidates. Commonly this is the issue with this space is identifying high-quality candidates. This is something we have a particular focus on and will only present candidates of suitable quality.



The permanent market was very strong last year. This was particularly prevalent in H2 when there was a huge amount of upheaval in the market. This has left several green teams with new staff members at all levels. Similar to contract, there was a real fight for talent within the 1-3 years experience bracket as slim Compliance teams could not train junior candidates. We are anticipating that teams will need to bolster both senior and junior spaces to build out the capacity to train those candidates. Failure to do so will result in an even stronger fight for talent in the market moving forwards.

Particular areas of growth have been trading surveillance and generalist teams. We are working with organisations who are seeking to see where they can strategically place flexible talent to get the best value to add. This means finding candidates who can value add across multiple teams in the business. We can source candidates who can provide excellent team fit as well as the traditional value add. This is particularly important as teams return to the office more consistently.

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