The Future of Fintech During and After COVID-19

The Fintech industry has come a long way in recent years.

However, due to the coronavirus global pandemic, some worry about the future of industry. Will it still continue to thrive? What type of fintech businesses will come out strong post-pandemic? What can be expected on forecasted growth and hiring demand?

Fintech in the time of COVID-19

The pandemic has forced millions of companies to temporarily suspend their operations or at least shift to a remote working setup. Affected countries have imposed varying safety measures to minimise the spread of the disease. Because of limited operations, drastically reduced revenues, and the fluctuating world economy, many companies fear that they might have to close their doors for good.

There is light at the end of the tunnel and for efficiently run technology companies, particular fintechs, the current market may offer a multitude of opportunities for growth.

Finch Capital’s analytical report on disruptive and enabling financial technology provides a good breakdown of the sector and the data they collected and analysed shows that there may be hope. The report sheds a light on the many opportunities and challenges that the fintech sector will most likely face during and after the coronavirus outbreak.

Here are some of the key takeaways of the report:

  • The digital-only trend will most likely become the new normal in the financial industry.
  • Companies should expect to stay in crisis mode until the third quarter of 2020.
  • SMEs and consumer lending platforms and life insurance and digitalisation companies are expected to come out strong amidst the crisis.
  • There will be an increase in demand for Fintech enablers such as AI, software development and IoT.
  • The accelerated digital shift is expected to increase competition between challengers and incumbents.
  • Companies in their early stages are at risk if their growth stagnates or plummets in a span of six months.

The report was carefully pieced together by Finch Capital in an effort to project what people should expect for the future of fintech.

Challenges brought by COVID-19 to Fintech Companies

Besides affecting operations, the coronavirus pandemic also presents a number of other challenges to fintech businesses. A few examples of these include:

  • Creating new models of interaction with the client base – With the increased demand for online transaction, companies need to come up with better and more effective ways to engage with their prospects and existing client base. Otherwise, customers or potential customers might end up feeling unsatisfied or disconnected with the company.
  • Finding better ways to generate leadsGenerating qualified fintech sales leads can be quite challenging these days because of lack of face-to-face interactions and steep competition. Without the help of quality lead data or a team of lead generation specialists, businesses might have a tough time connecting with their target audience and increase opportunities to increase revenue.
  • Managing decreased hiring rate – Some companies are busy dealing with decreased hiring rate because of the difficulty of facilitating recruitment and interview processes. Others struggle because of their dated recruitment funnel. To get around this issue, companies can make use of the following adjustments:
    • Create flexible recruitment processes
    • Provide accurate information on the job posting
    • Use live videos or recorded video interviews
    • Opt for remote onboarding
    • Work closely with a specialist recruitment agency    

Recruitment Advantages Caused by COVID Situation

Needless to say, the COVID-19 situation has negatively impacted how businesses operate. However, it’s nice to note that there are a couple of positive things that came out of it in terms of recruitment and hiring advantages.

For starters, there are still companies looking to expand their team and acquire talent. In-demand businesses such as online payment platforms, digitalization vendors, process automation enablers still need to hire more people in order to provide better value and experience to their customers.

Additionally, such in-demand fintech companies get to access a larger pool of talent. They can even tap into the passive talent market, people who were previously unavailable due to prior commitments or have not previously been open to opportunities. On top of that, a lot of potential candidates feel more open to flexible salaries and working arrangements.

Fintech Career Options for Professionals

The global pandemic has greatly affected the world economy and is disrupting many industries including the financial technology sector. But, at the same time, one should not be too quick to dismiss it as a total hindrance to one’s goals and aspirations. 

Indeed, there are financial technology companies that suffer a lot due to the loss of funding. However, there is a substantial number of businesses that are already ahead of the curve. And these companies are open to expanding their workforce.

Some examples of the most in-demand jobs in the fintech business today are as follows:

  • Automation – Various financial institutions have been using robots and Robotic Process Automation (RPA) to work on management and backend processes. There aren’t a lot of RPA developers and engineers in the APAC, so it would be great to take advantage of an opening when you see one.
  • Cloud computing – Cloud computing roles are essential to digitizing a company’s operations. Hence, cloud computing careers are also in-demand within the financial technology space. Some examples of cloud computing roles include cloud solutions architect, development operations engineer, cloud engineer and data scientist.
  • Digital workforce solutions – A lot of companies look for digital workforce solutions experts who can help them build efficient systems needed for their operations. Digital workforce transformations are a must for businesses who wish to scale up and ensure frictionless communication and collaboration between departments.
  • Regulatory Compliance solutions – Regulation is still paramount within the Financial Services sector and vendors with high-quality and value-add solutions are growing. A number of fintechs have been expanding in this sector with key demand in hiring of sales, presales, and professional services talent in APAC.
  • Cybersecurity – Cybersecurity job vacancies continue to increase each year. And the best part is that there’s a relatively smaller pool of talent. Ultimately, they are highly sought after by technology firms with healthy remuneration potential.
  • App Developers – There is a continuous increase in demand for app developers for both mobile and web all around the Asia Pacific region. That’s because financial technology companies want to find a better way to serve and engage with their customers through the use of a dedicated software. 
  • Digital Payments – Some governments and regulatory bodies have discourage the use of cash during the outbreak. Digital transactions being free from physical contact, and a more secure way to pay and receive money, have increased and firms are aggressively hiring talent in this space.

What are the key proficiencies that fintech companies look for?

The Asia-Pacific is teeming with potential, especially for fintech vendor and startups. Currently, it is home to 34 of the top 100 fintech companies in the world. Professionals who are interested in honing their skills and taking part in one of the most disruptive business sectors to date will certainly find a lot of job opportunities in the region.

Here at Datasearch Consulting, we help exceptional candidates find their dream jobs. In our years of experience in matching talent to hiring companies, we have observed quite a number of trends. In general here are the key competencies that fintech companies look for in a future employee:

  • Tech savviness – Fintech is a fast-paced environment which makes use of various tech solutions to simplify processes and facilitate day to day operations. You must be tech-savvy in order to cope with the demands of the job.
  • A track record of success – You will need to demonstrate to future employers your ability to add significant value and help scale a business.
  • A passion for numbers – Or at least, the ability to tolerate number-heavy tasks. It would also greatly benefit you if you stay on top of the latest news in the industry and familiarize yourself on how to interpret financials.
  • Soft skills – Besides the technical competencies, companies also look into the applicant’s soft skills such as communication, problem-solving ability, and adaptability.     

COVID-19 – A strong reminder of the importance of innovation

Most definitely, the global COVID-19 pandemic is going to leave a lasting mark on every sector. It will also serve as an awakening for companies and industries that fail to appreciate the value of innovation and technology.

The future of fintech may be a bit bleak and uncertain for some. But for firm believers, we know for sure that the expected economic fallout won’t necessarily equate to a complete disaster.

A lot of amazing companies were established during a financial crisis. A few familiar names include General Electric, Hyatt, FedEx, WhatsApp, Credit Karma, Groupon and Uber. They all succeeded because they maximized the limited resources they had at that time. For everyone affected by the disaster, our hearts are with you. We believe that we will all get through this together. 

For those who had to file for unemployment because of the pandemic, you too can find a career opportunity within fintech. There are a number of APAC based companies in the financial technology sector who are hiring talent right now. And we are here to connect you with some of the best job openings out there.

Datasearch Consulting is here to help!

Looking for fintech career openings? Are you a fintech vendor looking to capture and generate more leads? We can help you. Let us come out strong from this tough challenge. Get in touch with our team today!

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Alan Anwar is the Managing Director at Datasearch Consulting, a leading executive recruitment firm specialising in the Financial Technology & Data sectors.

You can download their FREE comprehensive guide on “The Complete Guide to Hiring Fintech & Data Talent – 5 Proven Steps to Secure the Best Candidates Possible” hereAlternatively you can view the Datasearch Consulting website or contact them directly on info@datasearchconsulting.com for a more detailed discussion.

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