Career Advice Job Market Trend Report

Top talent buck trend

Sunny Kwak, private banking consultant, Morgan McKinley

Private bankers are sought after by all sorts of different firms in the Hong Kong and regional market, from top-tier to boutique private banks. The challenge to secure top talent continues, with a premium paid for top performers who can bring their book of clients with them. However, we expect a more conservative approach to pay, as the industry is in consolidation mode and we will see banks recruiting in accordance with strict salary benchmarking. The average increment we have seen recently is around 10 to 18 per cent.

In contrast, the strict salary matrix doesn't necessarily apply to candidates in the areas of internal control, business development and support, or investment suitability projects. With frequent changes to regulation requirements coming from the Hong Kong Monetary Authority, private banks are more willing to pay attractive salaries to secure talent from their competitors. In these areas, we have recently seen exceptional candidates securing increments of as much as 20 to 25 per cent.