Emerging technologies, a rapidly evolving financial landscape, and a consistent demand for fresh talent characterise India’s Banking, Financial Services, and Insurance (BFSI) sector. Santosh Joshi, CEO of BankEdge, shares exclusive insights into the sector’s trends and future prospects.
As one of India’s largest employers, the BFSI sector offers an abundance of opportunities across banking, finance, and insurance. “Over the last decade, the sector has experienced significant growth, primarily driven by factors such as regulatory changes, financial inclusion, and advancements in technology,” says Santosh Joshi, CEO of BankEdge.
He notes that the BFSI Sector Skill Council of India had projected a BFSI labour force requirement of 8.5 million by the end of 2022. “BankEdge has trained over 30,000 graduates for this sector, and we aim to train over 30,000 more in the next three years,” says Joshi, further demonstrating the potential and growth opportunities that the BFSI sector offers.
To put this in context, HDFC Bank, the largest private lender, alone added a record of more than 31,600 people in the whole of the last financial year.
The sector offers diverse opportunities across departments such as customer service, business development, human resources, cybersecurity, digital technology, credit management, trade finance, financial risk management, IT, and CRM, to name a few. This breadth of possibilities ensures that students who embark on a BFSI career path have a wide range of avenues for growth and advancement.
Moreover, as the sector embraces digital transformation and witnesses the rise of fintech startups, innovative job roles and prospects are emerging. “The ongoing shift towards digital banking and the rise of fintech startups are likely to create new job roles and career prospects for young graduates,” Joshi points out, underscoring the need for professionals to acquire a blend of financial knowledge and technological skills.
Essential skills for a career in BFSI
Indeed, BFSI is expected to evolve substantially in the coming years. To keep pace with the industry, Joshi advises young graduates interested in banking to master various skills, focusing particularly on branch banking, customer service, retail banking, credit management, trade finance, personality development, and financial risk management.
“Risk management and regulatory compliance have gained significance, and young graduates need to be well-versed in these areas, too,” he suggests, highlighting the increasing demand for these skills.
Gone are the days when one joined an organisation and continued till retirement without any upskilling. By prioritising upskilling, employees can effectively navigate the ever-evolving landscape and avoid finding themselves adrift on the unemployment highway –Santosh Joshi, CEO, BankEdge
Avenues for career growth
The BFSI sector, with its ever-expanding horizons, offers a wealth of opportunities for individuals equipped with the right skill sets. Within this dynamic landscape, banks, Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFCs), and insurance companies emerge as veritable hotspots of diverse roles and responsibilities.
“It may range from customer service, business development, human resources, cybersecurity, digital technology, credit management, trade finance, financial risk management, IT and CRM among others,” Joshi shares.
Across all these departments, the sector seeks individuals with a strong work ethic, excellent communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and adaptability to navigate the ever-evolving demands of the industry. The need for professionals with a blend of domain-specific expertise, technological acumen, and a customer-centric mindset is paramount to thrive in the dynamic world of BFSI.
Compensation, work pressure and retention strategies
Interestingly, amid the transformative changes brought about by the pandemic, a significant shift towards a more people-centric strategy is taking hold across various industries, with the BFSI sector at the forefront. This strategic pivot is crucial, considering the sector’s well-documented challenges of attrition rates and work pressure, particularly for those on the frontline.
“Our courses are designed so that candidates start at Rs 3 lakh per annum and can go up to Rs 4.50 lakh per annum,” says Joshi. He underscores the increase in salary scales as skill requirements grow, stating, “Right from the front desk to the managerial level, the salaries have gone up, and BankEdge plays an important role in training candidates.”
The importance of upskilling in the digital age
Joshi echoes the findings of Randstad Sourceright’s 2022 Talent Trends report, which emphasises the need for upskilling to keep pace with digital transformation. “Gone are the days when one joined an organisation and continued till retirement without any upskilling,” he remarks.
Given the advent of AI Generative tools like ChatGPT and its implications on employee qualifications, Joshi cautions that many roles may become redundant, urging employees to upskill and remain competitive, or risk unemployment. “By prioritising upskilling, employees can effectively navigate the ever-evolving landscape and avoid finding themselves adrift on the unemployment highway,” says Joshi.
With the right blend of expertise, adaptability, and a customer-centric mindset, the future looks bright for those embarking on a career in BFSI.
About the author: Santosh Joshi has over 18 years of experience in the retail training domain. During his tenure of nearly 12 years at APTECH Ltd., Joshi managed multiple centres across the West and South regions while spearheading the development of the franchise network nationwide.
Year of Incorporation: 2014
Number of Employees: 50-100
Founder: Santosh Joshi, CEO
Business Line: Academy for Banking and finance
Key Investor: Bootstrapped company