fintech graduate schemes
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UK Fintech Firms Graduate Schemes are too ‘Limited’ and Must ‘Improve Access’; FDM Group Reveals

Sixty-four per cent of fintechs currently face the prospect of dissatisfied graduates quitting their grad schemes; according to new research from strategic talent solutions partner FDM Group.

Thirty-five per cent of employees in financial institutions and fintech firms revealed that their organisation offers limited graduate schemes, due to the time required to train new staff taking too long.

Graduate schemes in the financial services sector typically last around two to three years and aim to provide graduates with an in-depth understanding of the industry, develop wide-ranging expertise, and identify and nurture their interests.

The concerning findings were revealed by a poll of 250 decision-makers at UK financial institutions and banks, via the independent polling agency Censuswide, to measure the current state of digital skills and diversity levels in the banking and finance sectors.

It was also revealed that 74 per cent of workers believe that applicants for graduate schemes in the financial services industry are male-dominated, and 70 per cent believe that diversity, equity and inclusion are an afterthought in the financial services industry.

Despite these concerning statistics, FDM Group also revealed that 86 per cent of workers agreed that their organisation regularly promotes graduates from entry-level roles. This suggests that if efforts are made to improve access, this number, job satisfaction and employee experience will rise.

Fintech companies must “improve access”

Although graduate schemes are often considered positive in other industries, financial services have seen high drop-out rates and lack opportunities to enter or progress in the sector. The new findings reveal that fintechs need to ensure that these areas need to be improved, with a greater need to prioritise diversity equity and inclusion.

Sheila Flavell CBE discusses fintech graduate schemes
Sheila Flavell CBE, chief operating officer for FDM Group

Sheila Flavell CBE, chief operating officer for FDM Group, explained: “If the UK wants to achieve its ambitions of becoming the ‘next Silicon Valley‘, a range of work must be done to improve the mitigation of drop-out rates early on in careers within the financial sector, and improve access. The financial services and technology sectors will only continue to grow once young people are presented with and made more aware of the opportunities available to them to develop a career in finance.

“Grad schemes are a great way to pool knowledge, expertise and develop skills, in turn confronting the skills gap that pervades the UK. Improving access and career progression is thus crucial, and getting fresh faces into the financial sector is key to encouraging a more inclusive financial ecosystem.”


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