Press releases

Consumer giants and tech titans steal a march on banks in talent battle

10 November 2014

  • Banking falls below FMCG as most popular career choice for business students;
  • Negative industry perceptions remain amongst business students that banks do not support women or ethnic minorities;
  • Students value professional training and development over pay.

Banks looking to snap up the best and brightest students need to revamp their employer brand if they are to win the war for talent, finds new research from Deloitte, the business advisory firm.

Banking has slipped to the second most popular career choice amongst business students, with the fast-moving consumer goods (FMCG) sector taking the top spot and the software and computing services sector securing the third position.

Margaret Doyle, head of financial services insight, said: “Banks need students with information technology skills to meet both regulatory demands and consumer preferences for online and mobile banking. However, over one-third of students do not think banks are particularly innovative or dynamic, so perhaps it shouldn’t come as a surprise that banks have lost out to FMCG and software and computing services. The challenge for banks will be to show potential recruits the variety of creative digital roles available. This will require a step-change in terms of how a bank promotes its brand in the graduate market.”

Banks will also need to overhaul their brand amongst graduates because negative industry perceptions prevail amongst some future bankers. Nearly three-quarters (74%) do not associate banks with providing flexible working, while over half think banks do not offer secure employment or a friendly place to work. Less than one-third of banking students associate the sector with acceptance towards minorities and only 38% think banks support gender equality.

Nick Sandall, head of financial services, said: “The figures paint a stark picture for the banks, but a solution is possible if they listen to students. Banking students want job security; it is the second highest career goal. Students considering working for a bank also value professional training and development, above all other traits in an employer, including financial incentives, such as performance-related bonus and overtime pay.

“The onus is on banks to advertise the positions that meet these demands, and address unhelpful perceptions about their culture. Failing to do so could mean they miss out on this generation of talent, with longer-term consequences for their ability to compete against new non-bank competitors.”



Notes to editors

About the survey

The Deloitte Talent in Banking Survey 2014 is based on a survey about business students’ career intentions in 31 markets around the world. Universum, which conducted the survey, polled 700,000 students and professionals from 2,000 universities and institutions of higher education in 36 markets. Deloitte examined the survey results from 174,000 students in the 31 markets.

About Deloitte
In this press release references to Deloitte are references to Deloitte LLP, which is among the country's leading professional services firms.

Deloitte LLP is the United Kingdom member firm of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited (“DTTL”), a UK private company limited by guarantee, whose member firms are legally separate and independent entities. Please see for a detailed description of the legal structure of DTTL and its member firms.

The information contained in this press release is correct at the time of going to press.

Member of Deloitte Touche Tohmatsu Limited.

Gillian Bishop
Deloitte LLP
+44 (0) 20 7303 0776
+44 (0) 75 4124 3999

Did you find this useful?