Financial services recruitment agency Core-Asset Consulting have warned of mass employment difficulties after receiving more than 350 applications for one project management role which typically attracts 30 applicants.

The Scottish recruitment firm believes the financial services sector has become ten times more competitive due to the pandemic and the changing needs of business.

Core-Asset Consulting head of temporaries and contractors Mike Stirton said: “What we’re seeing are two factors combining; The first is the natural evolution whereby business’ needs have changed, for example the digital revolution is well underway meaning there are far less transformative projects in this space and many more hands-on operational roles have become redundant due to the automation achieved. The second factor is the impact of the pandemic that has seen businesses react by cancelling many improvement projects to instead concentrate on more business critical activity.

Both these factors mean demand for staff in these areas has dropped, which has led to the pool of affected applicants becoming deeper, and it seems likely to continue in that trajectory’’

“With many organisations implementing working from home, location is not as pressing as it once was. We’re seeing more job hunters from further afield, such as London, applying for financial sector roles based in Edinburgh and Glasgow, further exasperating the situation for locally based applicants.”

Stirton advised that applicants need to find their niche when applying for a job in a saturated market. He said: “It’s so important that your CV accurately and concisely reflects your experience – we often receive hundreds, if not thousands of CVs from applicants who state they are experts in various software, programmes or outputs – yet don’t have evidence this clearly enough on their CV to back it up.

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“Applicants should think about the needs of the role they are applying for and clearly demonstrate how their experience matches up when applying for jobs. Someone who states they can do everything tends to be dismissed as a ‘jack of all trades, master of none’ which is increasingly not what employers are looking for when going to market, they tend to have very specific needs that need a specific solution.”