If you want to work for a bank, credit card company, or investment firm, what skills do you think you need?
For years the core skill sets for financial employees were customer service and a strong grasp of accounting concepts. But in 2017, the financial services industry — and the talent profile — looks a lot different than it has in the past.
Emerging tech brings new challenges for financial companies. PricewaterhouseCoopers published a report in December about the top challenges facing financial services organizations. Of 10 challenges, three sit squarely in the tech realm: artificial intelligence, blockchain and cybersecurity. In September, the news of the massive Equifax data breach again brought the need for better cybersecurity in the industry into the spotlight.
Plus, financial companies face increasingly strict regulation, says Lorri Freifeld, editor-in-chief of Training Magazine. “More so than many businesses, the financial/banking industry is subject to a constantly shifting regulatory environment, including legislative changes and different compliance and licensing requirements by state and country. Training content can vary from operational procedures to sales tactics to regulations and legal requirements. It is a broad spectrum, with each job function requiring different information.”
To meet these high-tech challenges, financial services leaders are looking to their learning and development teams to upskill and reskill workers. At Coursera, we’ve worked with banks and other financial institutions to build tech-focused training programs. If you’re looking for inspiration, consider these three case studies of companies that are leading the way in tech training.
Case Study No. 1: Advancing Tech Skills to Keep Up with Customer Demands
One of the world’s largest banks needed to upskill its technical workforce. Specifically, leaders wanted to make sure their newest developers were qualified to work on the most critical customer-facing systems.
The company set up a new-hire training program based on Coursera’s Full Stack Web and Multiplatform Mobile App Development Specialization, a series of five courses taught by professors from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology. The program covers front-end frameworks Bootstrap 4 and Angular, mobile applications and database implementation.
The results of the program have been clear:
- Technical managers are more confident assigning business-critical projects to their teams.
- Those teams have more consistent skills, which has reduced errors.
- Reducing errors has increased the overall quality of service presented to clients.
Case Study No. 2: Creating a Culture of Learning
The industry is changing, and most leaders see that change coming. Leaders at a global financial services brand wanted to find a way to help all employees transform their skills and embrace a culture of continuous learning.
“With 50 percent of our jobs facing high change in required skill sets by 2020, it is clear that we need to start a transformation journey to develop future skills in a faster and more cost-efficient manner,” the company’s CHRO says.
The company created programs for employees across the company, with a wide variety of courses: programming to leadership development to finance. By creating this foundation of learning, the company is preparing its people to continuously upgrade their skills to stay ahead of the curve.
Case Study No. 3: Prioritizing Technical Skills for All Employees
Not every employee needs to be a developer. But at a tech-forward company, it doesn’t hurt for all employees to have baseline technical knowledge.
A global credit card and banking company wanted to stay ahead of emerging technology by upgrading all employees’ tech skills and vocabulary. At the same time, leaders wanted to encourage a culture of learning by giving employees control over which skills they pursued.
The company rolled out programs for four different types of employee personas:
- Technology for tech employees.
- Technology for non-tech employees.
- The new hire.
- The executive track.
Each employee chooses the track they most identify with. Then, they browse a tightly-curated selection of courses and choose the most appropriate level of difficulty for them.
Each group receives technical training that fits their role and day-to-day work. For example, tech employees dive into the newest developments in data structures and machine learning. Employees on the executive track get a high-level overview of general market trends and emerging areas of opportunity. New hires use their onboarding to take foundational courses such as introduction to big data.
As a result, all employees can speak the same language and work together to respond to customers’ requests and expectations.
No matter what you’re teaching employees, Freifeld says the most successful organizations align their training efforts with corporate strategic goals and measure L&D results in terms of both behavior change and business impact. “They create an employee-centric culture that focuses on engagement, development, and growth,” she says.
Coursera for Business
With access to the best content from over 150 global university partners, Coursera allows you to create Learning & Development Programs that map to your company’s evolving needs. For more information about Coursera for Business, please contact us.5