Risk & Compliance – UK Finance Labour Market Trends Report, October 2023

Northern England experiences impressive growth in Fintech, securing 13.6% share of Risk & Compliance jobs in the industry

Key findings include:

  • Risk & Compliance is down 43.6% in Banking, a significant uplift in Fintech
  • Starling Bank now accounts for over 25% of Risk vacancies across all Fintechs
  • Lloyds Bank is one to watch, with a 36% increase in 2022 for IT vacancies

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Looking at 2023, there has been a significant decline in hiring across the risk & compliance functions. Nonetheless, the real story emerging is how this function are becoming an ever greater department within fintech, according to the latest UK Finance Labour Market trends report by Morgan McKinley and market data analysts Vacancysoft.

When analysing this shift, what we see is that in 2021, 4.9% of fintech vacancies were for Risk and Compliance, whereas by this year, that had risen to 8.6%. However, factor that within the banking sector, Risk and Compliance accounts for between 12-13% of all the vacancies. As regulation increases and fintechs are put under scrutiny, expect Risk and Compliance within these organizations to grow both in size and stature.

Ben Harris – Associate Director – Morgan Mckinley – comments:

“Currently the key areas of hiring activity revolve around regulatory-driven projects such as FRTB, Mifid III, and the transition from Basel 3 to Basel 4. Operational risk and Governance have experienced steady hiring, particularly in the controls space and within Enterprise Risk Management (ERM). Despite challenges, the industry remains agile, adapting to evolving regulatory landscapes and market dynamics.”

Rise of the Fintech Challengers

Starling Bank now holds a substantial 26.4% share of Risk and Compliance vacancies, a remarkable increase from the 8% share in 2022. Monzo, a prominent company in the Payment Processors sub-sector, is also on the rise, with a forecasted 5.7% share.

In the Cryptocurrency sub-sector, Binance is expected to make significant gains, reaching a 5.2% share of vacancies, while Mettle is projected to hold a 4.6% share. Finally, Wise in the Payments and E-money (E-Wallets) sub-sector is demonstrating substantial growth, increasing its share from 2.7% in 2022 to an estimated 4.8% in 2023. 

Looking at the composition of the fintechs, what is interesting is how payment processors make up four of the top ten firms by job volume, which suggests this is an area better insulated than most from the current IT crunch.

London dominates, Northern England increases share

By region, we see that London continues to dominate when it comes to fintech, peaking in 2022 with 881 vacancies. However, the stranglehold the capital has had over the sector is weakening somewhat. Factor that in 2022, 71% of the vacancies were in the capital, whereas this year that has fallen to 53.9%. The North has established itself as the largest region outside London, with 13.6% of the vacancies, meaning it has hit record levels in terms of national share. 

Barclays Lead, Lloyds surge

Within the Banking sector, Barclays leads the way as the top IT recruiter, with 1879 vacancies in 2023. However, there has been a -45.4% decrease, whereas in contrast. Lloyds Banking Group expects a positive 38.6% year-on-year change, with IT vacancies surpassing 1000.

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