Hybrid Option for FS

UK financial services firms choose hybrid working model to increase access to skills

Research published by the Financial Services Skills Commission (FSSC) suggests that financial services firms in the UK will move towards a hybrid working model to increase access to skills, retain staff and widen talent pools as the country exits lockdown.

The quarterly FSSC Pulse Survey conducted in February and March this year asked FSSC members who collectively employ almost a third of the FS UK workforce, a series of questions on future ways of working and the supply and provision of skills. The key findings from the Pulse Survey are included below:

  • 78 per cent of firms surveyed will make more roles available for remote working (post pandemic) and at the same time, firms surveyed are seeing staff expectations for flexible working increase.
  • Long-term remote working is expected to have a positive impact on access to skills. 40 per cent of respondents reported it will improve staff retention, with another 40 per cent expecting flexible working to widen existing talent pools. 20 per cent thought it will boost staff productivity.
  • Remote working has significantly improved employee training and collaboration, bringing people from across sites together and creating content that can be re-watched.
  • 25 per cent of firms expect to increase the number of apprentices they employ over the next 2-3 years.

“As lockdown lifts, organisations are offering flexible working options which they believe will improve access to skills and boost productivity and competitiveness,” says Claire Tunley, CEO Financial Services Skills Commission. “Employers see this as an opportunity to improve staff retention and significantly widen existing talent pools.”

Remote learning – like remote working – will have an important place in skills investment. Delivering training virtually can be very effective and has shown its potential for bringing colleagues across sites together, offering unexpected team-building efforts. However, inductions, apprenticeship learning, and leadership coaching were perceived as more effective when delivered in person. Increased demand for virtual leadership training among our respondents highlights the important role managers play across and the skills they need to perform their responsibilities.

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