Goldman Sachs President and Chief Operating Officer Gary Cohn presented at the Bernstein Strategic Decisions Conference today and indicated the bank would be hiring again, but mostly in areas thousands of miles from Wall Street. At least two of the locations are in the U.S., including Salt Lake City, home of Goldman's second largest office in North America.
This slide tells most of the story:
These are the support-focused locations where Goldman plans to hire lots of staff in the future. Here, staff are cheap and headcount expansion makes sense. At these four locations, Cohn suggested staff were 40 percent to 75 percent cheaper than elsewhere. Twenty percent of Goldman’s staff are based there already. Over one-third of all Goldman’s hires in 2011 and in year to date 2012 have been in one of these four places. As we noted earlier this week, a lot of future hiring seems likely in Bangalore (where we suspect the 75 percent discount applies).
Separately, Cohn said Goldman can’t pay its other staff a lot less money because people are key to its business, and because – even in this market – everyone wants to poach them. “We are in an industry where there is always a competitor or a client willing to hire our good people and losing those people will have a dramatic impact on our revenue,” Cohn lamented.
“The worst thing in the world is to have a very, very talented person, to underpay them, lose them and have to pay more to hire someone less talented,” he added.
Cohn has also said that lots of people still want to work at Goldman Sachs (this year’s internship pool is so big the interns are having to have a staggered start), there’s no plan to break up the firm and there is no plan to relocate Goldman’s HQ out of the U.S. That is all.
Cohn’s entire presentation can be accessed here.