Which drivers of change will affect their skills?
Skills required within this occupation are expected to be mainly affected by a set of drivers of change:
The transformation of organisational structures in response to various dynamic circumstances, such as privatisation of public organisations, changes in national regulatory frameworks and creation of supra-national bodies/frameworks (e.g. the European Central Bank single supervisory mechanism 4
) will prove to be an important driver of change. Office professionals, such as investment advisers, marketing and public relations professionals, will need strong ‘hard skills’, such as regulatory knowledge.
Globalisation and the expansion of e-commerce pave the way to new markets. To take advantage of the increased opportunities professionals, particularly in sales and marketing, will need to become familiar with new regulatory frameworks in this area and strengthen their language and intercultural skills. These factors will also affect the way in which organisations operate and business processes take place, e.g. development of new tools to monitor customers. Supply chain management skills will be also important to engage with local and regional suppliers. Management skills, such as coaching and team building, will be critical for some administration professionals, including personnel/human resources professionals, as well as language and intercultural skills to operate in cross-border/global markets.
Technological advancements will significantly reshape the skills required from these professionals in a range of sectors:
The reorganisation of the financial sector through a wave of mergers and acquisitions, and the expansion of ‘fintech’ 5
among financial systems and consumers 6
are expected to shrink the employment opportunities for financial professionals within commercial banking. In this context, only those with sufficient ICT skills will have strong employment potential. Analytical skills, as well as time management skills will be paramount for those professionals who want to develop a career in banking. Similar types of skills will be necessary for accountants, who will also need to compete for fewer job openings related to the computerisation of accounting and book keeping 7
Automation and computerisation will not only affect ‘day-to-day’ processes. Office automation will also affect the workplace for administration professionals who will need to become advanced users of various packages for word processing, maintenance of databases, etc. ICT skills will be required as well in a context of expansion of on-line banking and on-line government services. Marketing automation platforms such as Mautic will also help to target customers, build a relationship with clients and monitor market penetration. Once again the importance of ICT skills is emphasised. In investment banking, the process of strengthening organisations’ ICT architecture will also boost demand for ICT skills
Financial analysts and business analysts who understand statistics and command a firm grasp of database analytics can tap into the ever-growing big data flow to make valuable enterprise-wide contributions. A talented analyst could easily focus his efforts on strategic process improvements in areas such as human resources or operations. IT skills, such as systems analysis and proficiency with large enterprise resource planning systems, are also in great demand.”
Source: “How to Sharpen Your Strategy as a Financial Analyst”. Available at: https://www.roberthalf.com/finance/blog/in-demand-skills-for-a-financial-analyst
New trends in marketing such as virtual reality or location-based marketing growth – which rely on technologies such a Bluetooth Smart Beacons 9
– will create new opportunities for advertising products and the promotion of engagement with their brand. Subsequently, sales and marketing professionals should be familiar with these technologies and be alert of their potential.
The expansion of social networks and new types of media will also affect a variety of tasks that professionals within this occupational group carry out. For example, tools such as LinkedIn and Twitter will continue helping professionals to build their profile and establish their networks; at the same time they facilitate the recruitment of new staff with very specific skills. The so-called cyberculture (blogs, lifestyle websites, etc.) will increase their share of influence in marketing and public relations, i.e. creating new opportunities for reaching consumers. A deep knowledge of these platforms and the possibilities they offer would be a desirable skill for those aiming at succeeding in the field of marketing and public relations.
As a part of its Ditigitalization and future of work project
, Cedefop estimates the risks of automation
for occupations. The most exposed occupations are those with significant share of tasks that can be automated – operation of specialised technical equipment, routine or non-autonomous tasks – and those with a small reliance on communication, collaboration, critical thinking and customer-serving skills. The risk of automation is further accentuated in those (occupations) in which people report they have little access to professional training that could help them to cope with labour market changes. Office professionals belong to occupations where the automation risk is low.