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How has the finance industry changed in the last 10 years?

As part of our 10-year birthday celebrations at Grafton Banks Finance, we recently looked back at our history to see how far we’ve come. Having started the company in the middle of a global financial crisis, we thought it would be interesting to look at how UK finance industry has changed in that same period.

Stronger regulation and supervision of financial services

It’s hard to believe that it was 11 years ago that queues of panicked customers formed outside of Northern Rock, signalling the collapse of its business model and financial stability as a whole. The UK finance industry has come a long way since then, with more in the way of regulatory authorities to intervene when banks appear likely to enter difficulties.

In 2013, we saw the dissolution of the Financial Services Authority (FSA), to be replaced with the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) and Prudential Regulation Authority (PRA) and ensure business is carried out responsibly, protecting both the stability of the financial system and of consumers.

Building trust in the finance industry

For years following the financial crisis, understandably, consumer confidence had been at an all-time low, with less disposable income in UK households and trust in financial services all but relinquished.

Interestingly, as consumer behaviour trends have shown shifts in the way we perceive brands, with a notable focus on value on trust, this is also true for the business and finance world. Consumers, whether for personal or business purposes, are more aware than ever before and seek out organisations that operate with transparency and strong values at the forefront. With scandals over the years revealing data leaks, overestimated profits and controversial gender wage gaps, organisations are no longer able to operate under the radar.

Empowering diversity in the boardroom

Last year we touched upon the ‘career break penalty’ that so many women face when returning to work, leading to many female professionals working well below their capabilities. Lack of gender and ethnic diversity within organisations across business and finance professions has long been an issue, but a key change we have seen over the years is awareness levels and the way it is perceived by many, with a significant number of organisations pledging a commitment to achieve stronger diversity in its employment and leadership teams going forward.

Further to this, through the power of digital and social media, we are increasingly seeing more inspiring professionals championing inclusivity and diversity, and professional groups that are set up with the aim of empowering diversity.  

A surge in technology and new brands emerging

Ten years ago, if someone had asked you whether you would use a bank that operated solely on your mobile, you’d probably have said never in a million years. However, the fintech sector has boomed, with tech start-ups emerging from the recession and huge increases in mobile payment systems, new financial platforms, asset management software and data analytics all available at the touch of a button and readily supported by the government to encourage healthy competition.

This surge in new technology has shaken the finance industry up, breaking down the barriers for new competition to enter the market and made some of the bigger players sit up and listen. The explosion of new technology and availability of mobile functionality means it has become an expectation from most consumers today.

At Grafton Banks Finance, we place importance in putting people at the forefront of our business, ensuring we help find the right role for candidates, and source the right candidates for our clients. If you’d like to speak to recruitment professionals that take a tailored approach to your needs and work in partnership with you, get in touch with us today.

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