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Trending Topics in Financial Services Compensation Management

In my role as Global Head of Customer Success at beqom, I spend much of my time speaking with HR and Sales leaders at the world’s leading financial firms. While their focuses and practices differ, their priorities when it comes to organizational change have been largely consistent.

Reducing Risk

First, financial services firms are focused on risk reduction. New in 2018 was GDPR, and firms were challenged with new regulations around personal data security and compliance within specific jurisdictions. This challenge will continue as GDPR-like regulations expand to other regions, including California’s upcoming digital privacy law next year.

We also see firms continue to address risks around gender pay equity. New initiatives in the US and Europe, including UK Gender Pay Gap Reporting, are now requiring companies to be more accountable for their gender pay equity and turn up the levers on different initiatives to make sure they obtain that for their employees. We’ve been a key part of that process as we enable  HR teams to collect and analyze relevant data on our platform and dissect bias in compensation.

Additionally we’ve seen an increase in overall general scrutiny by financial regulators. In the U.S., the OCC has jurisdiction over retail banks and insurance companies, and many of our customers are focused on implementing systems that allow their sales incentive plans to be transparent and auditable, so that they can produce the appropriate reporting for the financial regulators. This transparency in the performance of their sales incentive plans also allows them to further adjust and design plans that drive the right behavior.

Boosting People Analytics

Secondly, we’ve seen more and more financial services firms focus more on people analytics around their employees. To do that, we’ve worked to help them to marry and digest a lot of transactional-level HR data and to put compensation at the center. Because compensation is at the heart of discussions in initiatives around talent acquisition, talent retention, and pay for performance, having this data in one place to draw analytics and insight for the C-suite is necessary to know whether or not initiatives around talent management are effective. We can take this a step father by linking compensation data to attrition and historical benchmarking data, both internal benchmarks and externally against peer groups to make sure that they're staying competitive. Having relevant data integrated on one system is a great start for firms to start tagging information for technologies like machine learning.

Finding Efficiency in Compensation Expenses

Finally, we’ve seen financial institutions take aim at achieving greater operational efficiencies. Considering that, for most financial institutions, a large majority of their operating expenses are related to compensation, it follows that without being able to drive automation through that process, it's very difficult to financial institutions to achieve the greatest operational efficiency. I’ve seen financial institutions at different points of their HR transformation and struggling to find efficiencies in their HR platforms. Ultimately what they realize is that to fully automate processes and ensure data security, compensation becomes the last mile for HR transformation.

Download our free e-Guide to see how automating your compensation processes can help you address these key themes and more: Integrating Total Rewards Management.

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