Variable pay in the banking sector is envied by many outside the industry, with the size of banking bonuses grabbing the attention of the media and the general public.
The indications for 2016 are that while base salaries are likely to remain staid, variable elements could be particularly lucrative for specialists eligible for rewards.
Accountancy salaries rise at junior level
The Robert Walters Global Salary Survey published earlier this year stated that general salary increases in banking and financial services are likely to be small or non-existent as regulatory pressure to keep costs down continues. However, professionals moving jobs have been gaining pay rises of 10-15 percent. Demand for regulatory experts and a shortage of accountants, the group responsible for most of the City’s job growth figures, means things are very different for them.
"A selection of in-demand candidates, particularly within regulation and at the newly-qualified accountancy level, is achieving very large increases of up to 60 percent," Matthew Crawford, Associate Director at Robert Walters states. Banks looking to hire new staff have to compete with offers from multiple competitors, which in turn drives salaries upwards.
Risk and compliance salaries on the up
The impact of recent regulatory changes means that financial penalties for banks are high, which has led to candidates with niche skill sets receiving significant pay rises. There have even been rare cases of salaries being doubled. We predict that demand for specific skill sets will continue in 2016, with specialists being able to command particularly high salaries.
"Many banks are struggling to retain staff," said Tomas Strelczak, Manager at Robert Walters. "If pay reviews and bonuses are not offered at the expected level, compliance staff will move to higher-paid jobs with relative ease. Banks looking to hire new staff have to compete with offers from multiple competitors, which in turn drives salaries upwards."
Are you likely to be rewarded?
New staff are frequently being paid much higher salaries than legacy staff, which creates an incentive for those on less money to move to a new firm. These professionals are often those who had been nervous to move jobs when the financial market was less stable. Now, with the situation more positive, there are opportunities available. If you’re not likely to receive the rewards you deserve, or feel that newly appointed members of your team have been offered a more substantial benefits package than you, it could be time to look for a new challenge.