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green-beanThe Future of the Financial Workplace

Unwork and DTZ are proud to announce the publication of their joint report on innovation in the banking sector. The Future of the Financial Workplace studies the future of work, workplace, property and workstyles in the financial services industry. The launch event for the report took place on 30 September 2014 at the Gherkin.

Video highlights of the event are available here:


The Five Drivers of Change

Our research points to five drivers of change in the way that banks and financial service providers think about workplace and property. These are:

  1. Regulation. Regulation and compliance is one of the main factors limiting innovation in property, preventing financial service providers from being more flexible in their working practises. However, new ways of working adopted by banks in the Netherlands and Australia offer a more positive vision of the future.
  2. Cost Pressures. Financial pressures are forcing banks to closely examine their real estate costs, with regional centres of excellence and near-shoring emerging as a model for the future.  
  3. Technology. The banks we spoke to are all increasing their investments in technology. With consumers demanding that banks digitise their product offerings, banks have found themselves in competition with new and agile FinTech businesses.
  4. Geography. Global banks are facing geographical challenges like never before. In financial hubs like London, New York and Tokyo, increasing real estate costs have led to a fall in average space per worker. Banks are struggling to structure themselves so that they can continue to operate in these financial hubs, as well as take advantage of fast growing emerging markets.
  5. Talent. With more and more employees engaged in technology related roles, banks have found themselves in competition with the likes of Google and Microsoft to attract and retain top talent. Potential new recruits place a strong premium on workplace environment.    

Seven Key Findings and Predictions

On the basis of our research, we propose seven key findings and predictions about the future of work, workplace, property and workstyles in the banking sector.

  1. Building Walls: Separation and Control. Regulation, compliance and risk may constrain banks in their ability to innovate and be creative. However, leading banks can and will challenge the assumption that regulation stifles creativity.   
  2. Property-free Expansion. Banks will expand their service offering and product portfolio without a proportionate increase in real estate.
  3. Urbanity Rules. Banks will move out of traditional financial Central Business Districts and relocate core functions to mixed use urban environments.
  4. New Kids on the Block Demanding Change and Innovation. To attract and retain top talent, banks will adopt more innovative workplace strategies and invest in technology.  
  5. The Mobile Revolution. As employees demand more and more consumer and individualised technology to work with, banks will adopt a new model for technology and systems development.    
  6. Shaping Up the Banking Structure. Automation will lead to a significant reduction in back and middle office jobs, lowering real estate requirements.
  7. Omnibank: Physical Meets Digital. Banks will use the return of a service-led high street presence and the disappearance of processing at a local level to drive a new model of retail banking.

Download your copy of The Future of The Financial Workplace report from our downloads zone

Find out more about The Future of the Financial Workplace research and DTZ.

To find out more about how the future of the financial workplace will impact your business, please contact Luke Connoley. 

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