How Data Analytics and Automation Will Impact Jobs in Financial Services

By IBF Singapore Posted 3yr(s) ago Reading Time: About 5 minutes


A recent report by MAS and IBF was released in April that aims to establish the impact of data analytics and automation in the financial services industry for the next three to five years. The report shared that one-third of job roles in the industry will be transformed as technologies such as data analytics and automation replace certain tasks while another half of job roles will be "augmented" as people use technology to enhance their performance.

The four main segments covered in the report are:

  1. Banking

  2. Insurance

  3. Asset management

  4. Enterprise

Of the 121 job roles in these four segments, 40 job roles have been identified as being highly impacted — with the potential for convergence or displacement — as the range of job tasks performed by these roles are likely to be affected by automation. 

Job roles which will be highly impacted by automation across banking, insurance and asset management sectors. 

Key findings

  1. The best ways to prepare the workforce is to look at the future skill requirements that will help job holders gain new capabilities or identify ways to enhance existing skill sets.

  2. As roles evolve, job holders will need to acquire new skills and be adaptable to changes as the financial industry undergoes transformation.

  3. Job holders will need to be more fluid and agile to adjust to what is required in the industry due to increased collaboration amongst job roles, business units and across organizations in the future.

  4. Job holders need to be adaptable to learn and re-learn skills. This adaptability will give job holders more opportunities across their organization to develop and value add.

  5. In order to reach the full potential of data analytics and automation, the rise of soft and business-related skills will be equally, if not more important.

  6. As product, processes, services and client complexity increases, skills will need to be tailored to the given role and a growing reliance on human judgment and decision making for deeper insights.

New and emerging roles in financial services

Data analytics and automation are expected to create new and/or more roles in areas such as Information Technology, Data and Analytics, Business and Partnership Development, Compliance and Marketing.

These roles differ from their traditional roles as they require substantive, and often a different set of skills. Examples of how some of these roles will be impacted and evolved in the future are shown in graphic below.

Emerging roles in financial services 

How to manage impact of automation

With rapid changes in the financial services industry, skills critical for the future workforce revolve not only around technical skills to use technology, but the accompanying skills to work alongside technology.

Thus, there is a need to stay abreast with technology to manage and make sense of data analytics and automation (or technology tools). Besides basic digital skills, there is also a need to enable the workforce to continuously acquire “add-on” skills, and integrate their unique business and domain knowledge to effectively respond to uncertainty and change.

To facilitate this, financial institutions and professionals, as well as training providers and education institutions need to collaborate more closely in identifying the skills needed as they emerge and evolve, and in designing and delivering training programmes in a timely manner – both to students as well as professionals already in the workforce.

To cater to professionals already in the workforce, there is a need to explore new learning methods and more flexible learning pathways to motivate and aspire individuals to embrace lifelong learning as well as facilitate this process.

There is a role that government can play in coordination and alignment of interests among different stakeholders, as well as the introduction of relevant interventions to facilitate system-wide changes necessary to develop a future-ready workforce.