Previously we’ve examined how intelligent machines and automation present an opportunity for banks to reverse talent brain drain and improve operational outcomes. We’ve discussed what proactive banks should be doing right now to create effective hybrid machine-human workforces in the future.

But we’ve largely overlooked the biggest upside of incorporating new digital tools into the banking workforce.

Accenture research on the future of the banking workforce highlights an important trend: technological disruption is set to remake the talent mix at investment banks. Process delivery jobs, which made up more than half of the jobs in the industry for FY2014, are set to decline by a third in the next few years. The portion of process specialist jobs will also shrink over that time, though not as drastically. This will be offset by huge growth in the number of business advisors employed at investment banks.

This is a considerable opportunity for the industry. Process delivery jobs tend to be less desirable for both new and experienced professionals, since they involve fewer opportunities for creativity and judgement. Specialists and advisors spend more time exercising their creative thinking and developing ideas than performing rote tasks.

This offers banks a greater chance to compete for talent based on offering meaningful work instead of competing purely on the basis of compensation.

Talk of automation and smart machines is understandably apt to make some people nervous. But while it is true that automation and robotics are going to eliminate many jobs, banks can seize this as an opportunity to offer more fulfilling careers to more of their workforce. Losing jobs does not need to mean losing people—in fact, it can mean offering them more than ever before.

Read the full report from Accenture on how digital talent can help investment banks here

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