Wealth industry unemployment rising, but some firms selectively hiring advisers

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How do you hire while maintaining social distancing?

While the nation-wide impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic will result in a surge in unemployment in our wealth management industry (with forecasts of over 11% national unemployment), some planning groups are still hiring – as regularly reported in the trade press.

Casuals were one of the first segments to be let go, with contractors soon following, notes Super Recruiters.

That said, the specialist wealth management industry search firm notes there are still roles that need to be filled – with demand still solid for experienced financial advisers. “There are several high quality financial advisory groups that are taking this as an opportunity to shore-up their business and even grow.”

Super Recruiters notes that demand is strongest for qualified planners that can bring a book of clients with them to a new home. Salaried roles are a less in demand.

How do you hire while maintaining social distancing?

Social distancing means that the industry’s hiring, management and engagement processes need to be altered, Super Recruiters suggests, noting that there are ways to recruit without actually meeting people face to face. “And these ways actually work better than traditional hiring methods.”

Research by LinkedIn found that traditionally the majority of candidates hired are selected on ‘gut feel’, despite the fact this is successful[1] only one in seven hires. These are low odds for success and investment owners and managers would not invest in a company with those odds. Yet this remains how most financial services HR departments hire. The fact is that traditional resumes and job interviews alone are poor predictors of actual job performance; as interviewees give rehearsed answers and interviewers pick candidates they like rather than those whom have a proven track record of delivering results.

Almost two-thirds of HR teams admit their traditional interviews failed at assessing candidates’ soft skills, according to the LinkedIn research. “Now is a good time to transform this!”

The solution

LinkedIn also notes that over three-quarters of candidates find their next role through a contact. Inhouse HR, which is rightly increasingly undertaking their own recruiting, needs to recognise this fact and harness it. This means that upon receiving a role brief, HR departments should search for whom would be best at that role, who has excelled at it in the past – and then reach out to them.

Wealth management organisations now more than ever need the best in the industry and those in the industry know who they area, those who can deliver results – and the only way to assess that is through referrals. Start this referral process even before seeking resumes.

“Cashed up companies are seeking to bolster their talent pools – but on a selective basis.

“When the pandemic ends this will turn around rapidly and companies will scramble to rebuild their teams. Those companies that have treated their employees with care and respect will come through this period well positioned and will be viewed as employers of choice.”

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[1] Over more than two years of successful service

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