Monday 20 September 2021
 
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Michael Armstrong

People-centric approach ‘key to attract best talent’

DUBAI, June 29, 2021

While Covid-19 has accelerated the pace of digital transformation in corporate finance, it has also highlighted the need for a more people-centric approach to organisational culture, said experts.

To attract and retain the next generation of corporate finance talent, firms and business leaders must review their operational models to incorporate a healthier workplace culture, said panellists during an ICAEW webinar on the attractiveness of corporate finance advisory as an early career opportunity.

The panel of young professionals and experienced practitioners debated the future of deal-making in the Middle East. The webinar provided insight on what skill gaps have been created by the move to remote working in corporate finance advisory, such as limited face-to-face colleague interaction and client engagement.

The speakers agreed the pandemic has brought to light the importance of having positive workplace cultures and that senior managers need to think more critically about employees’ needs. This could be achieved by reviewing their workplace culture to ensure that it is more flexible and provides a community, and learning environment where junior employees are exposed to senior partners within the firm.

The panellists highlighted the importance of flexible work arrangements in corporate finance. Speakers advised business leaders to consider the personal needs of their employees to allow better synching of working hours with their personal responsibilities.

According to the panellists, a firm’s ability to find a balance delivering on all fronts – from client servicing to employee engagement and satisfaction is linked to how it stands out in the recruitment market.

Michael Armstrong, FCA and ICAEW Regional Director for the Middle East, Africa and South Asia (MEASA), said: “Company culture has become an increasingly important part of the working world, and now is the time to build a strong one for the post-Covid-19 era. Businesses should consider changing cultural norms and behaviours to make the profession more attractive.”

“This would be beneficial to both employees, who will gain more control over their personal lives, and employers, who will be able to attract and retain the next generation of talented finance professionals.

“Employers should also ensure that employees have variety in their work to keep them engaged and motivated. This could be done by giving employees experience in different areas of the business, such as venture funding, private placements, initial public offerings (IPO) or perhaps mergers and acquisitions (M&A) to ensure that they aren’t performing the same tasks daily,” he added. – TradeArabia News Service




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