SINGAPORE - Even as it looks to foreign shores for growth, OCBC is conscious about developing and maintaining a Singapore core.
The bank - where Singaporeans form 80 per cent of its local workforce, higher than the national average of 77 per cent - is putting in more effort to develop a pipeline of talent. The proportion of its Singapore workforce grows to 94 per cent if Singapore PRs are included.
Said CEO Samuel Tsien: "Banking is more people-driven than any (other) industry. But as the banking industry develops, this supply of talent has not been able to keep up with the demand."
At the same time, Gen Y employees, or those below 35, have grown to make up 54 per cent of OCBC's Singapore workforce, from just over 30 per cent three years ago.
"We have more and more people on the younger side, and more and more people who'd need to be developed and need to be trained," said Mr Tsien.
To do so, OCBC started a programme last year aimed at nurturing the next generation of leaders in the bank.
Created for employees aged 35 and below with high potential and good performance, the OCBC Future Leaders Programme provides not only new skillsets but also general management knowledge.
It requires that selected employees go through at least one overseas assignment lasting between three and six years, and acquire broad-based knowledge of the bank through stints in various departments.
This includes a credit risk position; a customer-facing role, in order that the employee understands the market; and some time in the internal control and audit department which will instil an understanding of the importance of compliance.