FinTech Talent Report 2021

Press Release
For Immediate Release

FinTech Talent Report 2021

Singapore, 9 November 2021 – Singapore FinTech Association and Accenture Singapore have partnered and launched the FinTech Talent Report for 2021. The report reveals the opportunities and challenges for FinTech talent in Singapore, and how the sector can come together to build a sustainable FinTech workforce. The growth of Singapore’s FinTech industry, driven by factors like a conducive business and regulatory environment and increased digital adoption, has led to an even greater demand for talent. To meet this need, FinTech companies are experiencing various opportunities and challenges in talent attraction, development, retention and engagement.

Shadab Taiyabi, President of Singapore FinTech Association, said, “As the FinTech scene in Singapore continues to expand at a rapid pace, with more than 70% of companies expecting double digit headcount growth over the next 1-2 years, the importance of narrowing the talent gap in Singapore cannot be understated. Alongside other industry players, SFA remains committed to facilitating a collaborative ecosystem that not only enables companies to grow and scale their business, but also supports them in their journey to building a more resilient workforce.”

Key findings from the report include:

• Talent Supply
o 73% of surveyed companies expect double digit headcount growth over the next 1-2 years

o The demand for FinTech talent continues to outpace local supply – expectations of higher pay (69%), difficulty in obtaining work permits (64%) and candidates lacking entrepreneurial spirit (60%) are the key drivers of the talent gap in Singapore

o There is an accelerating demand for talent with specialised skillsets – skillsets such as AI/Machine Learning/Cognitive Computing are seeing a 12% increase in demand in future recruitment

o Remote working, driven further by the pandemic, has led to an opportunity to gain access to more specialised skillsets and/or affordable skills available beyond borders – 54% of surveyed companies have >50% of their employees operating out of Singapore

• Attraction and recruitment
o Survey results reveal that half of the respondents have cited career development and enhancement (50%) as the main reason to join a FinTech company, followed by the quality of senior leadership, direct supervisors and team members (20%)

o Employee referrals is the top sourcing channel for the recruitment of FinTech talent with 92% respondents leveraging it for hiring

o B2C companies attract more talent as their business can be easily understood and their impact on end-users is more tangible; B2B companies operate behind-the-scenes and are more specialised, leading to them become less well-known

o The background, capabilities and connections of founders or investors influences the level of confidence potential employees have in the company

• Development
o There is opportunity to significantly improve spend on learning and development per employee – 69% of survey respondents spend less than $1,000 per year, per employee on learning and development; this is less than the average L&D spend per employee, which is >$1,000 globally

o While development primarily happens on-the-job, some gaps can only be addressed effectively with formal learning programmes and just-in-time learning support

o Learning and development efforts tend to focus on building technical skills like Development and Implementation, Business Development, and Sales And Marketing; top behavioural skills being developed are Problem Solving and Creative Thinking

• Engagement and retention
o The common reasons for employee exit in FinTech companies include better opportunities (36%) and better rewards (31%)

o While potential candidates look to join FinTech companies for opportunities to develop and enhance their careers, they leave for the same reasons, indicating that they may not be getting the continued growth desired

o More can be done to address employee wellbeing – only 64% provide parental leave, 44% provide insurance, 12% provide tuition reimbursements and 11% provide gym/fitness discounts

To close these gaps and achieve workforce goals, FinTech companies need to take a more targeted approach in defining strategies to attract, develop and retain talent. Based on the 5’C’s framework, this includes clear strategies for recruitment, talent development including learning, performance management and succession planning, employee engagement and rewards.

Read about the FinTech Talent Report here: