Overseas experience is crucial to developing a career in finance, according to a survey of 3,019 Asia Pacific finance professionals conducted by eFinancialCareers in May and June 2011.
According to the eFinancialCareers’ Movement of Finance Professionals Survey, 88% of finance professionals surveyed thought overseas experience was important or very important to their career, while 91% would consider taking a role abroad. In Hong Kong, 86% of finance professionals surveyed thought overseas experience was important or very important to their career, while 87% would consider taking a role abroad.
In terms of job opportunities, 68% of respondents from all markets believe Asia Pacific has the most job opportunities, while 85% of Hong Kong finance professionals believe the same.
When asked which city they are most keen on relocating to, Asian destinations were the most popular choice. Singapore (18%) came on top for finance professionals across all markets, closely followed by Hong Kong (14%) and London (12%), while Shanghai (23%) came on top as the destination of choice for Hong Kong-based finance professionals, followed by Singapore (17%), New York (16%), London (12%), and Sydney (7%).
“These results show the level of intra-Asian mobility in financial markets,” says George McFerran, Head of Asia Pacific, eFinancialCareers. “New York and London will always be popular choices for financial career development, but this confirms our belief that Asia is top destination for expanding career horizons.”
“Given the opportunities on our doorstep, there really is no excuse for Asian finance professionals not to have some international experience on their resume,” says McFerran. “In today’s highly mobile environment, staying at home is no longer an option.”
When it comes to relocation choice, Hong Kong finance professionals cite better career opportunities, better work-life balance and better pay as the main attractions for their city of choice for relocation. Sao Paulo, Paris, Mumbai, Geneva, Frankfurt, and Dubai are amongst the least desirable places for relocation for Hong Kong-based finance professionals.
A significant portion (30%) of Hong Kong finance professionals surveyed would require a 20-30% salary increase to convince them to relocate abroad for a new job with their existing firm but out of the 30%, more than half would require above a 30% salary increment to consider relocation with a new firm. The survey also indicates that 13% of Hong Kong finance professionals want more than a 50% salary increase to be convinced to relocate for a new job with their existing firm while over one in five (22%) require the same increase in order to consider relocating with a new firm.
According to the survey, the financial job market is livelier than the previous year. In Hong Kong, 85% of finance professionals surveyed have been approached by headhunters or recruiters since the start of 2011 and 36% have been approached more than five times. 45% of Hong Kong-based finance professionals surveyed claim headhunter activity is higher compared with the same period in 2010. Finance professionals in Hong Kong are positive about the current finance job market outlook with 72% of them believing that there are more job opportunities in the market now as compared to 2010.
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