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Financial services employer confidence “highest in a decade”

The financial services industry has well and truly shrugged off the global financial crisis, with employer confidence at its highest level in close to a decade.

Finance sector australiaConfidence in the financial services industry has gone from strength to strength in the results of the the Hudson Report: Employment Expectations Australia survey,  with companies in the financial services/insurance industry accelerating in confidence with a net 51.5 per cent of employers indicating an intention to increase their permanent headcount over the next quarter.

“This represents the sharpest increase in employer sentiment across any sector in Australia, with sentiment up a staggering 14.3 percentage points (pp) over last quarter,” said Dean Davidson, National Practice Director, Hudson Accounting & Finance.

Fuelled by the recovering Australian economy, as well as new international opportunities, financial services organisations are investing in growth and there is heavy competition to increase market share.

“The strong rebound in employer confidence correlates with a number of institutions ramping up large-scale projects. These projects and other internal initiatives – such as transformational change in technology and customer service, and the deployment of new distribution channels – are currently underway to improve competitive positioning,” said Davidson.

“While hiring is expected to continue increasing in the project space, employers in other areas have exhibited cautiousness in recent weeks due to the renewed turbulence in financial markets. It is uncertain how this will play out with regard to hiring intentions over the coming months.

“Regardless of this, the significant overall improvement in employer sentiment in financial services lends weight to the argument that the sector has truly emerged from the economic downturn,” said Davidson.

“There is no doubt that we are beginning to see a return to the severe skills shortages of 2007 in many areas.”