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With the major banks reportedly all taking different approaches in their ring-fencing strategies – and feedback on the proposals not due back until Q3 of this year, compliance departments face months of uncertainty but compliance contractors could clean up! That’s according to Duncan Jeffery, a specialist compliance recruiter at search firm Compliance Professionals.

“All the banks had to submit their proposals by 13 January and having spoken to several senior Heads of Compliance in the market, over the past couple of weeks, the mood is one of real uncertainty. For one thing, there is a real sense that a 2019 deadline for implementation will be challenging in the extreme – particularly as the publication of formal proposals is not likely to be until Quarter 3 of this year. Then there will be the interpretation of those proposals – with all the banks taking different approaches – and some reportedly asking for waivers over certain elements of the rules. This, coupled with the regulator saying that they will take a ‘proportionate approach’ means that there is likely to be a massive amount of work to do in the run up to the deadline. The problem is that no-one yet knows how thick the Chinese Walls will be – and consequently exactly what work will be needed. We’re talking about potentially deconstructing years of legacy infrastructure and systems as well as processes and governance – that’s no easy task.”
However, Jeffery believes that the real winners will be professional contractors who have experience of large regulatory implementation projects:

“There’s no doubt that those with experience of leading projects such as MiFid will be hot property and we could be talking rates of £1500 - £2000 per day. While some of the banks have already put in place compliance professionals who specialise in specific verticals, from a practical point of view, some of the skill sets required could be very different. There would need to be a more audit and control approach to deal with the financial segregation aspects to prove that the ring fence is working.”

With compliance skills already in short supply it could be that the war for talent is only really just beginning.


Tracey Barrett
BlueSky PR
0771 2281631

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