SFE Member Update | May

I would like to take this opportunity to thank every one of you, our members, for your engagement and participation over the last month as we have set out to launch Scotland’s Financial Services Strategy. We have been delighted with the response from members, partners, government and the media.

With the strategy now in place, our focus is on delivering on its key objectives. By doing so, SFE will be the voice of the industry. We will facilitate collaboration across the sector to a level not previously experienced and establish deep relationships with other business groups in Scotland, the UK and globally that will support the development and growth of the sector.

This strategy was designed by you, and for you, and we need our members to continue to engage enthusiastically as we begin to execute our proposals. There will be many opportunities to get involved, as shown on page 14/15 of the strategy document.

To be able to support and lead the delivery of the strategy, one of our initial tasks is to build our internal capacity and capability. As such, we are offering two new roles to the SFE team: Director of Membership Services and Director of Commercial. More information and role descriptions can be found here. The closing date for both roles is Friday 11 June.

As well as this, the SFE Board is looking to appoint three new Board Directors, with applications accepted from all SFE member firms. The ideal candidates will have the skills and experience in one of the key areas of our strategic focus, on climate/environment, economic recovery, skills and inclusion, changing customer needs, digital technology, UK and international partnerships. We are also seeking someone with a legal or professional services background. To ensure our Board is representative of the society in which we live and work, we will be applying an inclusion criteria to the process. Further details can be found here.

This is an exciting time for SFE as we build on the firm foundations created over the past few years. Not only are we bringing in fresh new skills, talent and expertise to our team, we are welcoming a number of new member firms. Joining us recently are Albany Beck, Nile Consulting, Royal London, Scottish Investment Trust and Scottish National Investment Bank.

I look forward to working with new and existing members to deliver our shared strategic ambitions over the coming years, and, if we get this right, I’m confident we will make a real difference to our customers, colleagues, communities and the environment.

Sandy Begbie CBE

SFE Chief Executive

Government engagement
SFE continues to speak to both governments about how our industry is supporting customers, colleagues, communities and the economy. We are also providing opportunities for SFE members to speak direct to policymakers. Activity during May included:

  • Sandy met with officials from HM Treasury on 12 May to discuss the strategy and economic recovery
  • Sandy and Philip met with Scottish Enterprise Chief Executive Linda Hanna and Scottish Enterprise Chair Lord Smith on 12 May to discuss working together to help deliver the strategy and recognising Scot Enterprise will be a key relationship.
  • Sandy met with officials from Scottish Government International Trade and Investment Directorate on 17 May to discuss FiSAB and Scotland’s Financial Services Strategy
  • Sandy met with Minister for Scotland Iain Stewart on 19 May to discuss the banking barometer, the strategy and launch, and the opportunity for Scotland Office to engage with SFE members.
  • Sandy and other business leaders met with Deputy First Minister John Swinney on 25 May to discuss economic and society recovery
  • Sandy sent letters to key government ministers in both the Scottish and UK governments, as well as emails to all MSPs and Scottish MPs to inform them about the launch of Scotland’s Financial Services Strategy and to welcome their collaboration on shared opportunities going forwards
  • Sandy continues to attend weekly meetings with Scottish Government and business trade bodies. If you have anything you would like Sandy to raise on these calls please get in touch with him direct or contact our new Director of Public Policy & Communications, Sandy Macdonald, smacdonald@sfe.org.uk

SFE in the media

  • The launch of Scotland’s Financial Services Strategy was covered by a number of news organisations, including The Scotsman, Scottish Business News, and Scottish Business Insider.
  • Sandy was interviewed on BBC Good Morning Scotland about the strategy, which aired on the morning of its launch.
  • The BBC News Channel also spoke to Sandy earlier in the month about the SFE manifesto ahead of the Scottish parliamentary election.
  • Sandy penned an op-ed in The Scotsman to mark the beginning of mental health awareness week and promote the SFE Young Professionals mental health campaign.

Scottish Financial Enterprise Annual General Meeting 
Our thirty-fifth AGM will be taking place on 17 June. Due to covid-19 restrictions this years meeting will be a closed event convened with the minimum quorum of members as stated in the Company's Articles of Association. Members entitled to vote should have received proxy voting forms by email. We strongly encourage members to exercise their votes by returning proxy forms by email in advance of the meeting to lbanks@sfe.org.uk.

PA Consulting event
We partnered with PA Consulting on 20 May for an event exploring business agility and resilience in the age of Covid-19 with Adam Stringer, PA’s Operational Resilience team lead, and Amy Finn, PA’s change management and agile specialist. You can watch the event in full here.

FinTech Scotland & EY event
On 21 June, SFE will be joined by FinTech Scotland and EY to discuss the UK Government’s Kalifa Review, and it what it will mean for UK fintechs and the wider financial services industry. Invites will be sent to members soon.

SFE Young Professionals mental health campaign
SFE Young Professionals have had a busy month, putting on a range of events and activities as part of their on-going mental health campaign. On 10 May, they were joined by Julie-Ann Murphy from SAMH (Scottish Association for Mental Health) to discuss the importance of mental health in the workplace. On 27 May, they spoke with British track and field star, Eilidh Doyle about the mental pressures of success. The network has also put out a range of video content about mental health, which you can find out their Linkedin page. 

SFE Young Professionals Mental Health Survey
There is still time to take part in the SFE YP mental health survey, which is for all members of the YP network. The anonymous survey takes 10 minutes to fill in and, once completed, you will get the chance to enter a prize draw for five £50 Amazon vouchers. Take part here.

SFE Young Professionals upcoming events
The Young Professionals are hosting two events this June. On 3 June, they’ll be speaking with Rachel Bussom Manager in the Financial Services Cybersecurity Consulting practice at EY about the application of AI and robotics in financial services. Register here. On 10 June, they’ll be partnering with Standard Life Aberdeen and 1825 Financial Planning for an event about financial wellness. Register here. All SFE members are welcome.

DYW Live Unified Schools Programme events in June
DYW Live are hosting five SFE Unified Schools Programme Meet the Expert sessions in June, giving secondary school students 40-minute, free, expert-led sessions on the various career paths and roles in financial services. Two of the sessions will be led by USP lead Nik Bobb, two by SFE Young Professional Stephen Friel and one by SFE Young Professional Louise Lu.  Further details here.

My World of Work Virtual Meet the Expert session
My World of Work are running virtual meet the expert sessions for secondary school students learn about key careers in key sectors, with SFE members HSBC and Investec leading sessions on the financial services sector. Further details here.

Fast Track into Financial Services
A fresh group of students started the Fast Track into Financial Services course at Glasgow City College and Edinburgh College on 17 May. The next course starts on 30 August.

You can watch recent graduates Chris Imrie and Valerie Stewart describe their experience on the six week, fully funded qualification in these new videos. Please share with anybody you think might be interested in taking on the fully funded, six-week qualification. Details on how your organisation can support Fast Track can be found here.

Fast Track nominated for further awards
Following its nomination in the Tes FE awards, Fast Track into Financial Services has been nominated twice in the upcoming The Herald Higher Education Awards, in the Outstanding Business Engagement in Colleges category, and the Partnership category. Find out more here.

FinTech Scotland Innovation Roadmap
FinTech Scotland has unveiled a new roadmap to grow the digital economy, which is aligned with the findings of the UK Government Kalifa Review. Chief Executive of FinTech Scotland Nicola Anderson, said: “The roadmap will further advance and grow Scotland’s fintech cluster, bringing insight and specific focus to accelerate fintech innovation.” Take a look at the roadmap here.

SFE Insight with Chartered Banker Institute – Vulnerable Customers
In our first thought leadership blog in May, Shona Matthews, Head of Regulation and Policy at the Chartered Banker Institute, discussed the effect of Covid-19 on how we see financial vulnerability, and the new ways financial services firms can develop best practice to meet the needs of vulnerable customers. Read it in full here.

SFE Insight with UK Finance – LIBOR Transition
In our second thought leadership blog in May, Daniel Cichoki, Director of Libor Transition at UK Finance discussed the state of current industry preparations as we continue to approach the once-in-lifetime end of sterling LIBOR, including details of UK Finance’s introductory guide to the transition. Read in full here.