Financial services 'held back' by lack of digital skills

The financial services sector is being held back by a lack of digital skills amid an ongoing talent gap, according to research of key decision makers

Three quarters of workers in the financial services industry believe it is being ‘held back’ by a lack of digital skills and gaps in the workforce.

That’s according to new research from FDM Group, which found that 75% of respondents believe their organisation has struggled to fill vacancies requiring digital skills. In addition, more than 90% of workers believe that improved digital skills would support the technological implementation taking place in their workplace.

FDM Group surveyed 250 decision makers at UK financial institutions and banks to determine how the financial services industry is being affected by the much-reported skills gap within the wider tech sector.

Despite the problems that still exist, many respondents were positive about the effort that their employer was putting into resolving the matter: 86% of them agree that their organisation prioritises staff training and digital skills, rising to more than 90% of female respondents who agree.

Tech skills ‘essential’ right across financial services

Sheila Flavell, Chief Operating Officer of FDM Group, comments: “Tech skills are essential across all industries, especially financial services with the increasing adoption in areas such as AI and analytics. A lack of tech proficient staff is holding back the industry from effectively implementing new technologies and is ultimately stunting the growth of many financial services institutions.

“While workers may believe their organisations prioritises training, clearly more must be done to support those wishing to gain new skills and a new approach should be taken to ensure individuals are being trained, skilled and reskilled in the necessary areas. Technology can provide huge benefits to organisations, allowing processes to be made easier, services to be made more efficient and operations generally to become more seamless. For the UK to achieve its goal and cement itself as a global science and technology superpower, government and businesses must come together to re-think their approach to both educating and training the nation in digital skills in order to maximise the benefits of the technology that is available.

“Providing access to greater training and upskilling, through means such as outsourcing or graduate programmes, can offer a wider pool of staff the opportunity to improve their skills and plug the skills gap within the industry.”

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