Learn Mandarin to land banking jobs in Singapore and Hong Kong, say recruiters

British bankers that want to get onto shortlists for jobs in both Hong Kong and Singapore will now struggle to do so unless they have Mandarin language skills.

British bankers that want to get onto shortlists for jobs in both Hong Kong and Singapore will now struggle to do so unless they have Mandarin language skills.Such is the finding of Astbury Marsden, a financial services recruitment firm with a background in the region. In a statement the firm commented that the demand for bankers who speak Mandarin has risen sharply as the overall pool of new jobs has shrunk.Mark O&#x;Reilly, Managing Director of Astbury Marsden Asia Pacific, said: &#x;For British expat bankers, having the technical skills and experience is no longer enough. If your role in a bank or fund manager is to deal with a mainland Chinese client, you are now expected to be fluent in Mandarin.&#x;Demand for Mandarin speakers has been driven by the growing importance of mainland Chinese corporate and high net worth private clients.Mr O&#x;Reilly noted that 40% of the roles Astbury Marsden has been instructed on in Hong Kong in the last quarter have required Mandarin skills, and that percentage is increasing all the time.There are, however, still sectors of the Hong Kong market where Mandarin fluency is not yet a required skill, but only at a rarefied level.

Said Mark O&#x;Reilly: &#x;In general, more senior-level appointees are not yet expected to speak Mandarin, as candidates at VP and Director level are seen as adding value through other skills and experience.&#x;&#x;Unfortunately for more junior banking staff, the linguistic demands are becoming more acute."

Top 5 areas with high demand for Mandarin Speaker
  1. M&A
  2. Management Consultancy (dealing with Chinese clients)
  3. Private Banking
  4. Corporate Finance
  5. Credit Risk
5 areas where Mandarin speaking is not essential
  1. Compliance
  2. Management Consultancy (dealing with English-speaking clients)
  3. Trading
  4. Sales (to US and other Western institutions)
  5. Product Control
Click to read Re:locate&#x;s tips on learning a new language.To access more news and comment on this region, register for our new digital Asia Pacific supplement here.