Middle office recruiters in London are busy. While some front office recruiters moan about a lack of action, middle office recruiters are fully occupied trying to find candidates for their constant flow of new jobs.
Here's where the hiring is happening the most:
Risk recruitment is being driven by regulation.
Busy risk recruiters point a finger at Basel III, Solvency II and MiFID III.
"All banks are having to look at new capital ratios and adapt risk infrastructure to new regulations," says Dan Chester, managing director of risk recruitment firm Wilbury Stratton. "They are having strengthen or augment teams and to change the entire way they approach risk."
Priya Mariannie at recruitment firm GRS, confirms that risk hiring is strong "across the board."
"Stress testing is creating jobs in market risk and there's demand for people to look at counterparty risk in Spain, Portugal and Greece. There are also a lot of roles related to risk-data, and analysing that data," she adds. "It's certainly very busy at the moment."
Chester says top-level risk staff are the most elusive: "It's the senior people that banks are struggling to find - the people who can interface with a board and determine what future policy is going to be. In the past, it's been easy for risk professionals to be too deferential to the business," he says.
Finance hiring is also vigorous: product controllers are leaving and banks need to fill the gaps.
"Finance hiring is relatively strong," says Simon Lindrea, a director at Michael Page. "There's been high attrition across finance roles because people weren't paid particularly well by some banks. This is creating a lot of replacement recruitment."
Paddy Burtt, director of the financial services business at Ambition, agrees that churn is an issue: "There were quite a few low bonuses, which means a lot of people are looking for alternatives. Equally, there are some banks that want to get all their hiring done in the first half for budgetary reasons."
3) Change management
Regulatory requirements and the pursuit of efficiency are creating changes. And people are needed to manage them.
A recent survey by Ambition on the state of change management in London, found that 71% of respondents considered themselves in a period of "change saturation;" 76% thought having the right skills in the finance change function in particular was their biggest challenge.
It doesn't help that many change management vacancies are filled by contractors, that many contractors are from outside the EU and that the criteria for entering the UK as a non-EU citizen have been tightened.
Nick Dunnett, contract recruitment director at Robert Walters, says the tightening of UK visa criteria has created talent shortages and rising rates of pay in the finance contract market. Product controllers are being lured into higher paid project management jobs and this in turn is ramping up rates in product control by as much as 100 a day,