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Tight Times Continue in Banking Sector, say HR Leaders

Hosted by: Deutsche Bank

Banking HR Leaders met at Deutsche Bank headquarters in Singapore for the quarterly HR update hosted by The Chapman Consulting Group, on 3 October 2012. Hosted by Stuart Klein from Deutsche Bank, the session was chaired by Matthew Chapman, CEO of The Chapman Consulting Group. The session was attended by leaders from Standard Chartered, UBS, ING, ANZ, Credit Suisse, Macquarie Bank, Franklin Templeton and many other financial services groups.

Discussion revolved around the human resource issues stemming from the following topics:

  1. Salary increases are virtually non existent at the moment and bonuses are static, with little growth expected.​
  2. ​Risk management has become an increasing bigger focus for the sector, with so many more checks and balances in governance.
  3. Talent management processes have become more complex, in terms of greater metrics being used to assess talent.
  4. Fewer promotions are taking place at the senior levels, with many banks shedding headcount at the senior levels.
  5. There is a new breed of talent emerging in the sector who consist of old hires sticking around or new hires being brought in who “accept” that the banking sector will never return to the glory days it’s seen in the past.
  6. Non banking sector industries are becoming more and more competitive with the banking sector, from a rewards perspective – banking no longer commands the premium it used to.
  7. All the banks, in attendance, were feeling the pinch of tougher rules by the Singapore government on awarding or extending visas for foreign talent, although most admitted that visas for senior foreign talent are still easy to get.
  8. Most banks are getting extremely performance oriented with pay and focus – anything non-essential, in terms of workload mix, is being parked.
  9. New graduates into the sector are being increasingly fussy on what they want out of the sector and it’s fair to say the pool of talent is shrinking. In the past the high financial rewards made the sector very attractive.

The group will next meet at the offices of UBS in January and details will be advised shortly.


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Matthew Chapman
Matthew Chapman


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Matthew Chapman
Global Management

Matthew Chapman


Matthew (Matt) Chapman is the Founder of ChapmanCG.

He has also created the Thrive HR Exchange, a global community platform for people leaders and HR professionals to find and exchange inspiration, ideas and insights. Discover some of his interviews with HR leaders here.

Matt has a Bachelor of Commerce in Accounting and Business Law from the University of New South Wales, Australia. He is a Singapore Citizen and divides his time between Asia Pacific, the Americas and EMEA.

Matt is a wellness, self-improvement and fitness addict. He has completed six desert, 250km ultra-marathons in Chile, China, Egypt, Antarctica, Namibia and Madagascar.

EA Registration Number: R1111550 Licence Number: 08S3543