Insights

Investment & Middle Office

INVESTMENT & MIDDLE OFFICE MARKET COMMENTARY Q1, 2019

• Article by BRUIN Financial

INVESTMENT & MIDDLE OFFICE MARKET COMMENTARY Q1, 2019

MARKET OVERVIEW

With Brexit still on the horizon, there remains an element of uncertainty. We have noticed that some candidates from continental Europe have put their job searches on hold for the time being due to uncertainty around working in the UK. We have seen the most demand in the reporting space, client services, product development & research roles (both product and market research as well as Equity Analyst roles).

The level of candidate movement is consistent with Q4 last year, but the start of the year is often characterised by bonus season. It is possible that the deferred decision on Brexit has had an influence, and once this uncertainty is resolved we are likely to see more activity, particularly from candidates who were dissatisfied with their bonus.

Overall bonuses have been in line with expectations, which have been fairly flat by comparison to last year. The boutique asset managers seem to have had more of uplift, but it is still too early in the bonus season to make any definitive calls. When it comes to prompts for seeking a new role, usually a lower than expected bonus might well sway the decision if the individual hasn’t had an uplift in their base, but this is normally in combination with other frustrations, such as lack of flexibility, lack of opportunity for progression or more recently, concerns regarding the firm’s post-Brexit position. But for most of our clients 2018 was positive, only with Q4 being slightly more challenging and as a result we have seen very few significant reductions in payments so far.

 

ROLE PROFILES

The roles in the last quarter were predominantly client reporting or client services related. Traditionally, client reporting roles have been difficult as people generally want to steer away from the reporting roles and transition into Front Office positions. This has been the same issue this quarter. Active candidates for reporting roles are smaller than we like. Other roles that we have seen in the current quarter are roles like transitions/ on-boarding at the more junior end of the market.

Clients have been willing to look at strong candidates from an operations background, looking for a new challenge. However at the senior end of the market our clients have looked for candidates with extensive experience and there has been a clear growth in market research roles this quarter. What is refreshing is that AM clients are willing to look at candidates who have the market research skills who come from different industries..

 

BRUIN NEWS

BRUIN recently hosted a breakfast seminar ‘Achieving EthniCity’ focusing on BAME (Black, Asian and Minority Ethnic Group) representation in financial services. We were delighted to be joined by hiring managers, HR business partners, D&I professionals and talent acquisition specialists to share strategies for change and overcoming challenges to inclusion. Our guest speakers and panellists were Maktuno Suit, Psychologist and Executive Coach, and Richard Thompson, Head of Investment Risk at Merian Global Investors. For more information on this or similar events, please contact your consultant.