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  • Rob Carter
    Rob Carter

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    AlgoMe: a community for innovation

    The business world changes at an ever-increasing rate, and for those of us working in Financial Services, we know there are not just one but multiple drivers of change. Former Barclays CEO Anthony Jenkins said recently the financial services’ ‘Uber’ moment is still five years off. If this is true, disruption will soon be upon us but we still face a rapidly evolving landscape.  Downward pressure on fees is now the norm. Changing client expectations and increased competition impact the way services are offered and the actual services themselves, plus the evolving regulatory climate is pushing for ever more transparency. These trends challenge legacy processes, technologies and everyone’s professional skills.

     

    A recent Fujitsu study of financial services found 56% of firms surveyed believe their businesses will not exist in the current form in five years’ time.  Nearly all, 96%, of the financial services firms feel the need to evolve further to ensure a long term future. This may sound bleak to some but it’s exciting evidence of new and exciting industry developments which are coming.

     

    Innovation is now imperative. The expectation is for individuals and organisations to embrace this dynamic landscape but moving from a static environment to a dynamic one with fundamentally different working practices can be overwhelming. People are being asked to deliver more and at speed, but this means individuals don’t have the necessary support they need to excel.

    If organisations are not able to find the time and resources to nurture talent in this demanding environment – where should we look for the support we need to continually innovate within our working lives as well as have the career mobility we seek?

    The answer is to be more proactive.

     

    In this new environment, the winners will be professionals who reach beyond their current network and link to the best people and companies to help them achieve their ambitions and goals.

     

    You might be looking for advice on a topic that you don’t feel you can ask a colleague or support on something transformative, like moving to a new industry or a different department. But how do you go about actually finding it?

     

    Over the last year, as I’ve moved outside of my comfort zone and into digital innovation, I’ve sought out mentoring and support from a variety of sources well outside the usual boundaries of my existing professional network. This journey has seen me mentored by CEOs of start-ups (some 15 years younger than me!) and respected leaders who have worked in the industry longer than I’ve been in this world.

     

    By extending and growing my network, I was fortunate enough to meet my business partner. We set up AlgoMe to augment this paradigm shift away from looking inwards for support and now we are building a community of proactive people that want to help each other adapt to the challenges of the future through discussion and mentoring. AlgoMe will help professionals search and find these useful connections not by mere chance, but through our unique data and advanced algorithms which matches finders with seekers and more.

     

    The benefit for those looking to become mentors are significant too – by increasing your network and exposing yourself to new ideas and ways of thinking. Either way, it’s a great opportunity. You could meet your future business partner or the person that introduces you to your dream job, or just give back and stay in touch with an industry that you may have left behind.

     

    Would you like to be part of our community? Please pre-register with us now to stay informed of AlgoMe’s launch date.



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  • Our picks

    • With the decorations up, the last order date for Amazon nigh and most of us looking forward to at least a few days break, it’s always a good time to take stock of what’s been achieved over the last 12 months.
       
      For AlgoMe this has been another exciting year.
       
      January started in style with the launch of the AlgoMe Careers mobile app – giving professionals the opportunity to find their next career opportunity on the move.
       
      Then in July we released our Industry Pulse Report – a check on what the industry was thinking about key topics such as Brexit, Pay Gap Reporting, MiFiD II and GDPR. Unfortunately it seems that the uncertainty that the industry was feeling due to Brexit is unlikely to have receded in the intervening period, but it’s good to see progress starting to be made in other areas such as gender and diversity.
       
      In September we launched AlgoMe Community – a place for the Investment / Asset Management industry to come together, providing professionals with ways to grow their knowledge, profile and network. We’d like to say a big thank you to all of the members that have joined and contributed and look forward to continuing growth in 2019.
       
      In November AlgoMe joined the Investment Association, becoming a Fintech member and working closely with Velocity, the Association’s new Fintech accelerator. This is a really exciting initiative and we’re looking forward to doing more with Velocity in the near future.
       
      We also launched our Mentoring matching service in November – designed to help AlgoMe Community members connect with the best individuals within the community to help them to reach their career goals using a simple but intelligent process. If you haven’t already signed up to be a mentor or a mentee, please do spend 5 minutes now and tick off a New Year’s Resolution early.
       
      As we go into the end of the year, we have also launched our survey on Investment Management, Fintech and the future of careers. The impact of Fintech on the industry is going to accelerate rapidly in 2019, but what has been less well documented is the impact on individuals, their careers and the skills they’ll need to succeed in a more digitised environment. We really value the input of our community members, so please spend a couple of minutes filling out the survey and we’ll make sure you’re the first to hear the results early next year.
       
      From me and the AlgoMe team, I wish you all a very happy holiday season and look forward to another year of exciting announcements and change in 2019.
       
      Rob
       
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    • I have always struggled to see a fair reason why employers should be allowed to ask about a potential hire’s current remuneration, other than to give them an advantage in pay negotiations.
      It’s something which can only exacerbate existing pay inequalities and  it’s abolishment can surely only be a positive thing.
      Here the Guardian argues specifically about its impact with regards to the gender pay gap:
      https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2018/aug/23/gender-pay-gap-current-salary-question
      I believe this has already been outlawed in some US states?
      @Jonathan Max - would be interesting to hear the view from HR. 
      • 10 replies
    • The Investment Association recently gave the industry a boost when it announced the launch of Velocity, its FinTech accelerator.  Designed to identify, develop and accelerate best in class firms with innovative solutions, Velocity will champion and facilitate the wider adoption of technology across the industry.
       
      And AlgoMe will be involved in this too, which is why I’m excited to announce we are now a member organisation of the Investment Association as an official FinTech member and have been named a "company to watch" by Velocity.
       
      Challenging Times
      The Investment Management industry faces major challenges and opportunities from forces such as digital technology, pressure on fees and increased regulation, while at the same time there are widespread changes in the workforce and their expectations.
       
      To date, Investment Management has both been fairly insulated from the challenges posed by agile FinTech competitors, but also distant from the opportunities offered by the new technologies and ways of thinking that such companies bring.
       
      Bringing FinTech closer
      Velocity is a fantastic step towards accelerating the adoption of FinTech. It has received support and endorsements from both inside and outside the industry, including from the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Phillip Hammond, who was enthusiastic about the initiative at a recent City event.
       
      To drive change and innovation, the industry needs to connect across different disciplines and areas of expertise, driving new ways of thinking and fostering cultural change.
       
      Without the benefit of emerging FinTechs and their external expertise, it will be hard for incumbents to harness the benefits of emerging technologies such as Straight Through deal Processing (STP), Distributed Ledger Technology (DLT), and Artificial Intelligence (AI) in areas such as risk and compliance, securities trading and investment decision making.
       
      Our Mission
      AlgoMe's mission is to connect the Investment Management industry and empower professionals to manage their careers. Our new product, AlgoMe Community, is placed to become the hub for the discussion between FinTechs and the companies and professionals in the wider Investment Management ecosystem.
       
      Join AlgoMe Community today
       
      AlgoMe Community - community.algome.com
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  • Related Content

    • Luuk Jacobs
      By Luuk Jacobs
      The adoption of FinTech will bring significant changes for the future of Investment Management - from which products are offered to clients and how they are delivered, to the overall structure of the Industry itself. This level of disruption will also impact the future careers of the individuals working in or entering the Industry today.
       
      According to the European Fund and Asset Management Association (EFAMA), there are 610,000 professionals employed directly or indirectly across Europe in the Investment Management ecosystem, with over 100,000 in the UK. Which of these roles could disappear over the next couple of years, where are the opportunities and how should you navigate the disruption?
       
      In our latest report, The Disrupted Career: FinTech, Innovation and the Future of Careers in Investment Management, we explore how FinTech is changing careers across the industry, and how professionals are being impacted by and are responding to these changes.
       
      DOWNLOAD THE REPORT
       
      Disrupted Career Paths

      Our report found that very few areas within Investment Management will not be impacted by technological change; the career paths of the future will be radically different. 
       
      Professionals will need to embrace a more flexible approach to career planning. In addition, future job growth and progression opportunities will be concentrated in FinTech and in roles driving innovation in existing Investment Management functions.
       

       
       
      Will We All Be Coders?
       
      Many professionals will need to develop more technical skills, and not just in traditional technology roles. Even where ‘hard’ skills around coding, AI and data science will not be important, there will be an expectation that professionals will have a more holistic view of how technology underpins the business.
       

       
      However, this will not negate the importance of soft skills, and blending skill-sets will be critical for the most successful teams and individuals.
       
      With the industry expecting strong growth with a target of doubling of AUM over the next decade, those who position themselves to embrace the coming changes can look forward exciting opportunities.
       
      To find out more, please read the full report.
       
      DOWNLOAD THE REPORT
    • Luuk Jacobs
      By Luuk Jacobs
      The Disrupted Career
       
      Welcome To The AlgoMe Report On FinTech, Innovation And The Future Of Careers In Investment Management
       
      This report aims to address key questions that are important to everyone working in or looking to join the Investment Management Industry.
       
      How significant will the impact of FinTech be on career paths? How likely is my current role to be affected? Where are the opportunities in this disruption? How can I best position myself for future success?  
      We asked a panel of Investment Industry professionals their views.
       
      The full report is available for download to all AlgoMe Community members. Not already joined? Becoming a member takes less than a minute.
    • Rob Carter
      By Rob Carter
      Brexit, MiFID II, GDPR, Gender Pay Gap and Diversity are the themes we consider top of mind currently which is why we’ve created the Summer 2018 AlgoMe Industry Pulse Report.
       
      We wanted to get under the skin of some of these key events and burning issues for 2018. In doing so, we revealed some very interesting results and statistics.
       
      Given a choice of 7 cities, Dublin, Paris and Amsterdam are the top three choices for Asset Managers, Fintech and Financial Services employees to relocate to following Brexit. While 54% would not consider moving as a result of Brexit.
       
      When it comes to regulation; we are not surprised to find MiFID II and GDPR will affect over 60% of the roles in the industry.
      Positively, 59% believe Gender Pay Gap Reporting will improve the career progression of women.
       
      Please read the report for the full information and do get in touch if you would like to know more about your industry workforce.
       
      Rob Carter, CEO, AlgoMe
    • Julia Kirkland
      By Julia Kirkland
      Guest blog from Julia Kirkland, Senior Partner at FSTP
      If you don’t know already, which of course you do, the Markets in Financial Instruments Directive (MiFID) is EU legislation which first came into effect in 2007. It was created to regulate firms providing services to their clients which are linked to ‘financial instruments’, these being shares, bonds, units in collective investment schemes and derivatives. In addition, it covers the venues where those ‘financial instruments’ are traded.
       
      Fast forward 10 years or so and we have an updated version – MiFID II. This includes the revised MiFID and a new Markets in Financial Instruments Regulation (MiFIR). January 3, 2018 is the day MiFID II must be implemented across Europe.
       
      Now we’re on the cusp of this deadline, the thorny and sensitive topic of Knowledge and Competence (K&C) is bubbling up as a major concern across the industry.  We’ve spoken with numerous firms in both the Asset Management and Wealth Management sectors and they have one thing in common; they’re all grappling with the assessment of competence of information providers.
       
      Who is in scope? 
      In Asset Management, this may cover a wide range of roles from sales teams, client services, broker servicing staff to Portfolio Managers (the really sensitive aspect of K&C). Managers may struggle with the fact they must tell a Portfolio Manager of 20 years plus who hasn’t got a formal qualification, they need to be assessed as competent and in a very short timeframe too.
       
      In Wealth, the scope may cover desk assistants, team secretaries and portfolio assistants who may all be in direct contact with clients, giving them information about prices, valuations, charges and providing generic market or sector views. Additionally, research teams who might attend meetings with clients to provide market, sector or stock views on a non-advised basis may fall under this too. Most of the firms we are speaking to are including research teams. Most of the above staff members have never been included in formal K&C Schemes before but this has changed.
       
      What happens in 2018?
      As it stands, information providers not assessed by January 3 will need to be supervised in their activities and oversight of any client interaction must be in place. If you’re not prepared, January 2018 is fast approaching and maybe it’s time to look outside your company for third party support and assistance.
       
      Our guest blogger Julia Kirkland, is Senior Partner, FSTP
      FSTP is a training solution provider with expertise in MiFID II and the company also runs workshops to cover Wealth and Asset Management to meet the ESMA requirements and provides advanced K&C assessments for more seasoned, professional staff.
    • Andy Milner
      By Andy Milner
      Following our successful event at Cass Business School in January, AlgoMe is teaming up with another of Europe's leading higher and executive education institutions with a panel discussion at Imperial College Business School on 3rd April.
       

       
      We will be joined by another panel of industry leaders to discuss the impact that the FinTech revolution is having on the demand for skills in the Investment Management industry and what individuals looking to enter or progress careers in the industry can do to help them succeed.
       
      Joining Rob Carter, CEO of AlgoMe and Ruben Lara, Chief Data Office of Standard Life Aberdeen, will be Ben Lucas, Partner in UK Wealth & Asset Management at EY, and Henrik Grunditz, Co-Founder & Chief Revenue Officer of Hivemind, a FinTech that is helping companies create value from complex data sets.
       
      Attendance is open to students and alumni of Imperial College Business School, and we will be sharing highlights of the discussion with the AlgoMe Community.
       
      If you have any questions that you would like to be put to the panel, please comment below, or send them to us via our other social media channels.
           twitter: @thisisalgome
           linkedin: algome
       
       
      Panelists
       
      Ben Lucas
      Ben is a Partner within the UK Wealth & Asset Management practice at EY. Prior to joining EY, he was a Practice Lead for Alternatives within Alpha Financial Management Consulting. Ben previously worked for EY as a Management Consultant and also for Zurich Financial Services. Ben has extensive experience across the Financial Services industry, with a particular focus on Asset Management and Alternative Investment. He has worked in senior strategy, advisory and change management roles based variously in London, New York and Paris.
       
      Henrik Grunditz
      Henrik is a co-founder and the Chief Revenue Officer of Hivemind. Prior to co-founding Hivemind, Henrik was a senior vice president at Winton Group, a large quantitative hedge fund where he was responsible for business development with institutional investors in Europe. Prior to joining Winton in 2013, Henrik spent 5 years at MSCI / RiskMetrics where he was responsible for developing the multi-asset risk analytics business across various client segments in Europe. Henrik started his career in management consulting, working in Accenture’s Capital Markets practice. Henrik holds a First Class Master’s degree in Information Systems Engineering from Imperial College London. At the end of 2018, Hivemind was just one of five companies selected for the inaugural cohort of Velocity, a FinTech accelerator programme run by the Investment Association (IA)
       
      Dr Ruben Lara
      Ruben is Chief Data Officer at Standard Life Aberdeen. Prior to joining Standard Life Aberdeen in 2016, Dr. Lara held senior positions at Vodafone, where he was Head of Big Data Analytics, and at Telefonica, where he was Head of Big Data Product Development and Innovation. Ruben started his career in financial services, working as a technology consultant specialised in data and analytics. Ruben holds a PhD in Artificial Intelligence and has received the First National Award in Computer Science from the Spanish Ministry of Science and Education and sits on the advisory panel of Velocity.
       
      Rob Carter 
      Rob is co-founder of AlgoMe and is an experienced Front Office change consultant with a diverse skill-set built during almost 15 years of working in Financial Services. Rob has worked across the complete project delivery lifecycle over a range of Investment Management and regulatory focussed initiatives; including, leading investment integration work streams of mergers between a number of major asset managers. He was formerly Head of Fixed Income and Equities Platforms at Aberdeen Asset Management and is a CFA Charterholder.
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