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The Actuary The magazine of the Institute & Faculty of Actuaries

Financial sector should inspire graduate loyalty, says PwC

Financial services companies need to do more to encourage loyalty among the graduates they employ or risk adding to the sector’s talent shortage, PricewaterhouseCoopers said yesterday.

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The results of a survey of graduates working in the sector published yesterday showed that 48% of graduates born between 1980 and 2000 now working in financial services were already looking for new opportunities and 42% were open to offers.

Only 10% of those surveyed were planning to stay in their current role for the long-term, while 55% of those questioned said they had made compromises when accepting a job during the downturn.

According to PwC, this is likely to mean that as job opportunities increase with economic recovery, many graduates will assess whether their employers are acting on their promises. Almost half (45%) of those questioned in the insurance sector said their pressing need for a job was the main reason for them taking their current role.

Jon Terry, a partner at the consultancy, said employers couldn’t ‘afford’ to ignore graduates’ attitude to recruitment, retention, management and development.

‘If companies fail to invest in trying to understand what drives this group, they face the real risk of losing large numbers of them to other companies when the job market picks up,’ he said.

‘Carrying on with the same approach to recruitment and retention is no longer an option. “Millennials” [graduates born between 1980 and 2000] want more than “just a job”. They expect a varied and interesting career, constant feedback and the opportunity to progress quickly. Their high expectations mean that companies might find it harder than ever to keep their best talent if they don’t adapt their approaches to their development appropriately,’ he added.

The PwC research also highlighted graduates’ awareness of the reputation of financial services, with 215 saying they would rather not work in the sector and 61% saying their actively seek out employers’ whose corporate social responsibility values reflect their own.

In particular, 76% of those surveyed in the insurance sector said they would leave an employer whose behaviour no longer met their standards.

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