Having successfully delivered a number of fintech and insurtech projects and having set up several highly efficient dedicated fintech development teams for our clients, we’ve put together 5 tips that can help any fintech startup or project find and hire qualified fintech development talent relatively fast and cost-effectively.
In 2018, global investments in fintech have reached US$111.8 billion, and are set to increase, as the industry continues to mature. In fact, if Gartner analysts are right, in approximately 12 years, 80% of BFIS companies will either adopt fintech or be driven out of business. Last year, over 60% of Americans were already using digital banking and bу 2022 their number is expected to rise to 65,5%.
This is good news: in a technologically complex world of today, fintech facilitates financial interactions on a business and personal level and delivers on a promise of financial inclusion for the unbanked population of the world’s poorest nations. It propels the economy and has already brought to life nascent industries like insurtech and regtech.
“The future of the financial services industry is increasingly weightless, requiring few physical assets to establish or maintain a presence. That makes the industry especially vulnerable to disruption by digital competitors.” Pete Redshaw, practice vice president at Gartner.
This implies anyone who successfully fuses financial services with digital platforms and innovative technologies will gain the upper hand over legacy banking systems and positively disrupt the financial industry.
But one thing is definitely hindering the advent of fintech – the global lack of fintech talent.
Surely, it’s not just the scarcity of experts: security issues, demographics and, to a certain extent, regulatory restrictions are also standing in the way. When it comes to tech talent shortage, it’s not just the financial industry either – across the world, IT specialists are in tremendous demand and command hefty salaries. Admittedly, this makes tech recruitment for fintech complicated and challenging.
Challenging, however, doesn’t mean impossible.
Below are some actionable tips to set you on the right track as you assemble your fintech development team.
1. Look for relevant skill sets
As of today, the fintech stack includes, but is not limited to artificial intelligence, machine learning, robotic process automation (RPA), data mining, blockchain, Ruby, PHP, Python as well as proficiency in API Platforms and cloud services (hybrid cloud). Make sure the candidates for your fintech developer positions have at least the partial command of these skills and are experienced in both finance and IT. Look at their resumes and ask questions to find out how they have used a combination of these skills in their work. Such candidates are hard to find, since fintech as an industry is relatively new, so considering experts from adjacent spheres like insurance and securities could be a solution. You will hardly come across specialists with a solid 10-year background in fintech, so don’t overlook people with alternative job experiences like freelancers, startup employees, contract workers, etc.
2. Partner with a reliable outsourcing consultancy
When you need to fix your favorite shoes, in 99% cases you’ll go to a professional shoemaker instead of DIY as you don’t have any relevant experience with shoe repair and don’t want to bring more harm to your shoes by doing something wrong.
When it comes to fintech solution development, the approach should be the same: unless you have well-established fintech dev processes, a strong fintech development team experienced in modern fintech architectures and technologies (i.e. tribal knowledge and in-house expertise), opt to partner with a niche fintech consultancy/outsourcing provider with strong recruitment capabilities.
Make sure your fintech outsourcing partner knows where to hire experts with the necessary sets of skills and expertise. The latest recruiting methods include account-based recruitment marketing, inbound recruiting, talent pool management, candidate relationship management, and social recruiting. Your fintech outsourcing partner should be in full command of these techniques and know how to use them in tech recruitment.
Yet, this is not the only indication of a reliable provider: make sure a company you partner with complies with regulations and never resorts to unethical behaviors or practices (e.g. gender discrimination, tax evasion, money laundering, etc). Also, it is highly important that the company in question works in US/EU legal framework and has headquarters in a country with a developed economy.
3. Test drive your fintech development
Build a pilot team for short-term needs to test your potential dev partner. The test drive is important: according to recent estimations, 10% to 50% of all outsourced projects end up backsourced, and backsourcing is often a slow and difficult process. There’s no better way to tell if your partner is reliable than seeing them in action. Choose a pilot project you can collaborate on, assign a manager to supervise the team progress, and see how it goes.
4. Leverage recruitment marketing and automation
Traditional recruiting fails at meeting sophisticated demands of today’s fintech projects as it’s pretty unstructured and focuses solely on the bottom of the funnel, i.e. application, selection, and hiring. Unlike it, recruitment marketing focuses on the top of the funnel, i.e. it builds awareness and consideration for your project among certain developer communities, and helps spark an interest of the best-matching candidates.
Recruitment marketing implies that a healthy mix of inbound and outbound strategies are put in place along with automation of candidates screening and vetting, interview, selection, hiring and on- boarding.
Read more about inbound and outbound recruitment in this article.
If you are looking for experienced tech firms, it’s only logical that they should use recruitment automation software to streamline routine processes. Lead lifecycle management, CRM integration, social marketing, campaign analytics and recruiting analytics: your fintech development provider should automate these operations completely so that their recruiting team could focus on the creative part.
Today, there’s a wide array of innovative tools to ensure and facilitate recruitment automation. Most of these tools are all-in-one (e.g. at 8allocate we use Zoho across all departments), which helps find, attract, engage, nurture, and convert the best matching candidates into job applicants. Recruitment automation allows to keep track of each candidate in the database, facilitates social recruitment, and, as a result, significantly improves your candidate journey and experience.
5. Create strong employee referral programs
Regardless of whether you’re hiring your fintech dev talent internally or using an outsourcing partner for this, make sure you or your partner has a good employee referral program put in place.
According to a recent survey by TalentLyft, referred employees take shortest to hire and onboard (see image below).
Employee referral programs prove highly efficient across many companies. At 8allocate, we launched our employee referral program not so long ago and it’s already yielded some positive results: thanks to employee referrals, our recruitment consultants were able to staff client-tailored development teams up to 30% faster than we did when we had no program and the overall quality of candidates was higher compared to those attracted through social recruitment and other traditional methods.
Don’t limit your referral programs to your company employees only! Make sure to spread the word of it across your social media channels, share with your resource and other business partners, publish news about it in external media, etc.
To make it work, make sure you’re ready with your CRM/recruitment automation, as each referred candidate’s journey should be mapped and monitored automatically and the right referrer should be rewarded for bring you candidates. If you launch this program without automating your recruitment first, you’ll be at risk of facing a huge mess, losing good candidates, and paying bonuses to the wrong people.
Fintech recruiting is no cakewalk, and hiring experts with the right set of hard and soft skills will surely take time and a great amount of effort. Avoid this hassle if you can and outsource your fintech development to a special provider onshore. Alternatively, extend your in-house team to get additional hands for doing more work for the same budget by partnering with a reliable offshore outsourcing company. It’s no secret that not all the world regions are experiencing the drastic tech talent shortage: job markets in Eastern Europe and Ukraine in particular are filled with qualified tech specialists with thousands of graduates joining the workforce each year. Fintech specialized providers have access to talent pools, own broad networks and disruptive methodologies to supply top offshore fintech talent for affordable costs.
Companies that are locked in their limited national talent pools will be stymied with their product development/digital transformation as time to hire a qualified fintech developer is long and so is time to market. While tech giants drain local talent pools by offering higher salaries, better career opportunities and social benefits, savvy startups and mid-market companies engage fintech development partners overseas not to wait for local pools to be refilled with fresh and affordable talent (which will take up to 5 years or more).