Stricter regulations are creating a surge in demand for some banking jobs in Australia

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Tighter regulatory conditions are creating job opportunities in Australian banking.

Financial planners with the right qualifications are in high demand as are those who can work in new risk operations teams created by the big four banks.

The latest quarterly report by recruiters Hays shows an increasing focus on APRA (Australian Prudential Regulation Authority) and AUSTRAC (Australian Transaction Reports and Analysis Centre) regulatory requirements has led to new risk operations teams being created in banks.

Both temporary and permanent jobs have emerged as banks push to meet regulatory deadlines.

Carl Piesse, director at Hays Banking, says there’s a shortage of financial planners because of stricter regulations.

“With the proposed legislation to raise education requirements and professional standards many organisations have changed their qualification requirements when it comes to hiring new Financial Planners,” he told Business Insider.

The minimum requirement to be a practicing Financial Planner is currently the Diploma of Financial Planning but now most organisations now also require prospective candidates to either be CFP (Certified Financial Planner) qualified, hold a relevant tertiary degree or have completed the Advanced Diploma.

“As such, those candidates with strong qualifications and experience are highly desirable and in demand and previously sought after financial planners, who don’t meet the stricter qualification requirements, are no longer being considered thus significantly reducing the talent pool,” says Piesse.

“This skills shortage is also compounded with the number of remediation projects that have been pulling technically strong financial planning candidates out of traditional roles leaving vacancies to be re-filled.”

The banks have been hit by a series of scandals, including poor financial advice which has meant going back to check customer files to see if they need compensation for services not provided.

On risk and compliance, Piesse says the banks are looking at overseas experience, particularly if a candidate has worked in the UK, Europe or Asia.

“This is due to the domestic skill shortage and the number of regulatory reforms rolling out in these markets before Australia,” he says.

“We’ve also seen an increase in temporary and contract Know Your Customer (KYC) roles as teams slowly expand their headcount. Some offshore branches have been looking to bolster their compliance departments following overseas fines and inadequate controls.”

Piesse says banks are also focusing on their onboarding and training programs to provide a positive experience and improve retention.

For more senior, experienced banking professionals, psychometric testing is now frequently used.

Despite the general reduction in branches across Australia, some banks are adding to their network and are looking to improve the customer experience in current branches.