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UKs Banking & Finance Technology Leaders Report a Challenging Year Ahead Says Harvey Nash

UK’s Banking & Finance Technology Leaders Report a Challenging Year Ahead Says Harvey Nash

Technology leaders in the UK’s financial services industry report a more challenging year ahead than their non-banking colleagues, according to the Harvey Nash CIO Survey, and discussed at Harvey Nash’s Banking & Finance CIO Event yesterday in London.

The survey, which reflects the views of 662 IT executives across the UK, reveals that over one-third (39 per cent) of banking executives are expecting their IT budget to decrease over the next twelve months a higher proportion than those expecting budget increases (35 per cent). This compares unfavourably with the UK as a whole, where only 30 per cent are expecting budget declines a figure that is more than compensated by the 37 per cent of CIOs expecting budget increases.

These themes were discussed in the Harvey Nash CIO Event hosted last night at the Andaz Hotel, London, where 79 IT leaders gathered to hear industry commentators, including Chris Blackhurst, editor of The Independent and previously City Editor at the Evening Standard, and Mike Wright, CIO of Man Group, debate the future shape of financial services IT.

The event, backed up statistics generated from an online survey of the 79 attendees, covered a wide range of themes:

A tough year ahead

A constant drive of & lsquo;more for less’ - saving costs remains the primary challenge for CIOs, 65 per cent of attendees cited this as a priority

A tough year ahead – dealing with regulatory changes is become an increasing concern and motivating staff is becoming a growing priority

Banking careers less attractive – 70 per cent of attendees believe working in banking IT has become less attractive than it was five years ago

Limits to innovation – two-thirds (67 per cent) of attendees felt that financial services’ & lsquo;lock down’ approach to IT was limiting its ability to innovate and change.

Banking still remains a prized career choice

Despite short-term challenges, working in banking still remains a highly prized career the Harvey Nash CIO Survey reports Banking & Finance IT salaries are the highest of all industries, and over two-thirds (68 per cent) find their job either Satisfying or Very Satisfying.

Albert Ellis, CEO of Harvey Nash, commented: “Our survey suggests that, against an economic backdrop that is resulting in budgetary constraints for the whole CIO community, banking and finance technology leaders are getting the worst of it. We think this is short-sighted. Cost cutting does not produce growth and can in extreme cases reduce the capacity of the business to effectively provide full service to its customers. It’s vital that CIOs have the budget and the operational freedom to be able to safeguard their software systems and to increase innovation.”

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