Four in five HR leaders in UK financial services companies say their organisation is facing a skills crisis, which may affect their business transformation plans.
This is according to people analytics company Visier, which warned of a “skills ticking time bomb” in the finance sector.
Fifty-six per cent of HR professionals felt the current workforce needs more upskilling than staff who were on their payrolls a decade ago. Eighty-eight per cent witnessed skills shortages.
This is affecting their plans for business transformation: 67% say that a lack of available candidates is holding back their organisation’s digital transformation strategy.
Businesses could not overlook the skills crisis as they settled into new ways of working encouraged by the pandemic, said Daniel Mason, Visier vice president EMEA.
“It should be a wake up call to the industry to see that a huge proportion of HR teams believe the industry’s skills shortage is holding back mission-critical transformation,” he said.
“To keep up with customers’ constantly increasing expectations for digital services, and to retain current talented employees, businesses need full insight into their staff’s capabilities and identify where gaps need to be filled. Investing in learning opportunities and upskilling current employees will reduce churn and boost competitiveness.”
HR leaders do not believe the issue will be addressed quickly and estimated that it would be solved in 3.5 years.
They could also face a talent exodus over the coming months. More than half of financial services workers in the UK said they expected to actively look for jobs outside their current company in the next 12 months, with 24% currently job hunting.
Fifty-five per cent of workers said they were worried about career progression if they did not develop their skills.
Visier commissioned a survey of 250 HR professionals and 1,003 employees in the financial services sector in May 2021.
Earlier this month the CIPD’s annual Good Work Index revealed that those in routine occupations were much less likely to report having access to skills development (27%) than those in higher managerial and professional roles (63%).
The CIPD recommended that organisations should prioritise skills development, especially for those in routine and semi-routine roles and those who’ve been furloughed.