Confidence is high among asset and wealth management executives. Most chief executives in the industry (92 percent) surveyed by PwC are confident or very confident about the growth outlook over the next 12 months. This is higher than the average of 86 percent across the financial services sector.
Almost two-thirds of CEOs (64 percent) in the industry plan to recruit more staff.
The survey results show an industry that is confident about its growth, but they also indicate a sluggishness to innovate and adapt to opportunities in the sector, including technology. For instance, two-thirds of the 185 executives from 45 countries who participated in PwC’s annual survey of the sector believe technology will impact or reshape competition within five years. However, only 10 percent are prioritizing improving digital skills and capabilities.
“Confidence in the growth of the industry is high and CEOs are taking action to shape the future of their organizations,” said Graeme Sunley, of PwC Cayman Asset and Wealth Management. “Although the survey shows signs of the AWM sector being slow to innovate and adapt, CEOs are acutely aware of the impact technology and their people strategy will have on their business.”
In fact, the five biggest concerns of chief executives in the sector are the availability of key skills (71 percent), the speed of technological change (66 percent), changing customer behavior (64 percent), lack of trust (61 percent) and cyberthreats (59 percent).
Despite concern about technology’s speed of change, wealth management CEOs believe it has had less of a transformative impact on the sector than other financial services areas over the past 20 years.