At financial services firms across the country, women have risen as a force to reckon with. Now, more than one-third of the workforce at wealth management firms is women, a far cry from five years ago. With women-centric financial products on the rise and the sector poised to grow leaps and bounds, the hiring of the fairer sex is only slated to rise.
For instance, at Julius Baer India, nearly 50% women are heads of units and business, women comprise 40% of the workforce, 16% are managing directors and senior advisers, 37% are executive directors, 25% directors, 34% associate directors and 57% of assistant managers. The Swiss wealth management group employs about 211 personnel in India.
“Globally, women’s wealth has shown unprecedented growth over the last decade. Women wealth managers are redefining the wealth management landscape by making the investment narrative-inclusive by involving female members of a family in active decision making,” Julius Baer India CEO Umang Papneja said.
At Waterfield Advisors, a wealth management firm founded by Soumya Rajan, former head of private banking in India at Standard Chartered, women make up 39% of the total workforce of 120 and manage over $2 billion worth of the firm’s total assets $4.7 billion of assets under management. The firm is launching ‘Heritage’, a wealth advisory brand designed for women — founders, entrepreneurs, inheritors and senior corporate professionals — on this International Women’s Day.
“Women are already a global economic force to reckon with, there’s no denying that. Today, they own about a third of the global wealth, but their wealth story has just begun. A generalised approach is riddled with assumptions and stereotypes, owing to our society’s patriarchal history, the need of the hour is exclusively tailored services for women,” Nita Shivdasani, head of heritage and executive director at Waterfield Advisors, said.
At Centrum Group, a diversified financial services organisation, more than one-third of its 300-member wealth and investment advisory team are women with several of them occupying senior positions of vice-president and above.
“Women are a natural fit for the wealth management business because of their inherent ability to be good listeners, nurture long-term relationships and build trust, which inspires confidence in clients. They also tend to think big picture and possess high emotional intelligence, both of which are crucial in successful wealth management. Events over the last couple of years, specifically the pandemic, have been a catalyst to get more women engaged in their finances,” Deepa Poncha, director & head (human resources) at Centrum Group said.
“Women, traditionally perceived as being financially risk-averse, are today a key figure in the wealth management space both as advisers and clients,” she added.
Centrum Wealth, the group’s wealth management division, is planning to 50 members across functions, of which several of these positions have been earmarked for women.
According to Leena Wakankar, chief human resources officer at ASK Group, another firm into wealth and investment management, “Women are increasingly participating in decisions pertaining to managing the wealth of the family thus making them a key partner in decision making for investment and wealth management”.
“Women have learnt the tricks of the trade and are charting new ways of doing business thus becoming a trusted adviser for their clients,” she added.