How Tech is Changing the Finance Sector
Following the Monetary Authority of Singapore (MAS)’s release of its annual report for 2016-2017 at the end of June, we examine the changing landscape within the finance industry below:
Key findings of the report signified a changing demand for new positions in the banking sector that did not exist previously. Interestingly, jobs within the industry saw 2,800 additions despite an overall slowdown in the sector’s growth last year. HR professionals were quick to comment that these new positions largely revolved around roles such as UX/UI designers, digital data analysts and app developers – all in a way connected to tech. All this points to the fact that those who are hoping to enter the finance industry or move laterally within it need to equip themselves with alternative and complementary skills to keep up with the times.
Many professionals – with the ones in the finance industry being no exception – find themselves in a position where their vocations are threatened by disruption in some way or another. One example of this is when it comes to traders, robo- advisory platforms have deemed many of their duties obsolete due to savings through automation. Another example is in the stockbroking subset, where both retail as well as seasoned investors are now able to source for information and expert insights through the internet without going through a middleman.
In regard to the threat that these positions pose to professionals, MAS managing director Ravi Menon puts it well, stressing that the real challenge is not whether technology will replace humans, but whether humans can work alongside it.
The Flip Side
On a positive note, disruption has also created new jobs. Tech developers are needed to build advanced client management systems and platforms for mobile payment providers. User Interface designers are required to ensure that well thought-out platforms are constructed appropriately while User Experience professionals are in high demand for creating a fluid customer experience. Cyber Security is also another rapidly growing trade that the banking industry heavily relies on.
One area that will continue to create a multitude of jobs moving forward is that of Artificial Intelligence (AI), as the banking sector reflects optimism about the opportunities that this phenomenon will create. Robo-advisory aside, the industry is also open to machine learning – programming that helps machines sense, comprehend and act in ways similar to the human brain. Banks are investing heavily in these new technologies as well as recruiting and developing the talent needed to implement and work effectively with AI solutions.
It is certain that technological advancements will change the finance industry considerably in the next decade. Some positions will be made obsolete while new ones are created. In conclusion, one should continually capture every opportunity to upskill and ensure employability in a digitally focused world.