Challenges regarding fraud, both pre-existing and new, are creating a lucrative market for professionals looking for risk jobs in London. As companies across a number of different industry sectors find themselves plagued not only by the increasing danger of cybercrime but also by more “low tech” fraud, with employees submitting falsified travel expenses and inaccurate entertainment receipts; the risk function is a critical consideration for UK businesses across the board. The IFRS9 financial reporting standard has also contributed to hiring trends as banks work to prepare a policy by which to assess loan risk in line with this accounting standard.
With the added pressure of the steepened regulatory climate and pressure both from within the market and public attitude, boards and senior management are taking more care to apply the most effective and advanced technology in order to combat corporate fraud, bribery and cyber breaches. Hiring managers are particularly looking for risk professionals with strong knowledge and experience of forensic data analytics (FDA) as this technology is fast becoming the method of choice in many organisations’ risk management and compliance programmes.
As cybercrime and insider threats continue to raise businesses’ awareness of the need to step up their risk management schemes, forensic data analytics (FDA) has in turn become more mainstream as risk analysts and managers employ evolving technologies and surveillance monitoring techniques to mitigate existing and emerging fraud and cyber risks. The use of social media and web monitoring tools in unearthing fraud has increased as many companies turn to visualisation methods in order to detect suspicious activity, regarding technology as a help as opposed to hindrance in combatting the darker side of the same coin.
Strategic, operational and external risks are at an unprecedented number with chief risk officers needing to take into account a number of key areas when planning their risk agenda for 2016.
Technology risk management primarily within IT organisations calls for risk professionals with a good understanding of ITRM functions. Thus companies are able to sufficiently monitor and manage technology risks leading to a greater probability anticipating and avoiding problems rather than reacting to them. Companies are also facing issues with monitoring their third party intermediaries and require risk managers to support them in continuously vetting third parties so as to identify those which could pose a risk. Opportunities in risk are also focused around the management of fraud and misconduct within companies, as they look to monitor the activities of employees, vendors and third parties in a bid to derail any collusive fraudulent behaviour.
Crisis management and data security are key priorities for risk managers, as are the steadily growing number of regulations, which need to be anticipated and planned for before they are implemented. Thus individuals with a solid knowledge of the more quantitative elements of risk, including model development, validation and implementation will be high on the hiring agenda, particularly for banks and consulting firms.
British risk salaries are generally strong in reflection of the demand for risk professionals, with risk jobs in London banks seeing pay rises of around 15%. Candidates with language skills will see their salary potential rise, particularly when it comes to senior risk roles, as they are required to operate across a more globally-focused market. Strong business analysis capability is also highly sought after as is experience with SQL for querying and extracting information. Experience in exotic interest rates products and derivatives, knowledge of ongoing and recent regulatory changes as well as competence with change management are some of the key expertise companies look for when filling risk jobs in London.
Risk reporting is a critical element of improving risk data aggregation in the face of more stringent regulatory requirements which demand a higher level of quality from report content and the automation of real-time information collection, particularly within the financial services sector. Thus demonstrating excellent communication, both verbal and written will serve to articulate a candidate’s worth in the hiring process. Maintaining strong stakeholder relationships is another important facet of any risk role, with many risk jobs in London calling for candidates to have strong interpersonal and relationship management skills.