Corporate Governance jobs market update 2016

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DatePosted on November 15, 2016 at 06:21 PM
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With corporate governance increasingly under the spotlight for SMEs (from a  banking compliance perspective) and multi-national corporations alike (and increasingly across more industries and sectors), the market for good quality technical corporate governance experts will only increase. 


The compliance field has seen steady demand throughout 2016, particularly in banks, insurers and asset management firms.  With the odd exception here and there, heads of compliance roles remain quite rare on the market.

Rather, the demand remains in the junior to mid-ranking levels of compliance professionals, including compliance officers (2-4 years’ experience), assistant managers and managers.

Michael Kwan, recruiter for company secretaries and compliance professionalsGeneral compliance professionals with responsibility for a broad range of compliance matters, particularly AML and KYC, as well as compliance monitoring, remain the most in-demand in this sector, regardless of which financial services sector they operate in.

Increasingly we are starting to see more Compliance Counsel roles (qualified lawyers) among multi-national companies with a specific remit of designing and implementing compliance procedures and controls across the region which dovetail with global compliance policies. Such counsels would be expected to keep abreast with both industry-specific and general local and international regulations (including FATCA, UK Bribery Act, FCPA) affecting the business processes of that company.

With most roles in the compliance arena, a very strong command of written and spoken Chinese (Mandarin) and English is required.


Quality company secretaries are high in demand – we have helped multiple, well-established clients find good quality company secretaries (from Company Secretarial Assistants to Named/Head of Company Secretaries) in the past year with an extremely high retention rate.

Following some very significant mergers and acquisitions of some of Hong Kong’s largest corporate service providers, demand for talent (ideally with 3 to 8 years’ of relevant experience) is extremely high, and this is the ideal time for candidates working at smaller CPA firms and corporate service providers to step up into larger ones.

Angel Cheng, recruiter for company secretaries and compliance professionalsMeanwhile, in-house listco clients are looking for candidates who are already chartered as a company secretary and/or have prior in-house experience. With year-end approaching, line managers are being kept busy and don’t have time to train up someone.

For candidates who are working at a local or smaller corporate service providers and are seeking more international exposure, international law firms are excellent options and again, we have helped multiple candidates from large corporate service providers to make this positive career step.


Demand for forensic investigations and risk management professionals amongst consultancies has been relatively low throughout 2016 as business remains steady and a high number of external consultancies are competing for the same types of business, and clients (mainly financial institutions) are under increasingly tight spending pressures.

Among such consultancies, the demand has been seen more at the senior end, from manager up to Director level, generally with a preference for strong Chinese language skills and an excellent network among financial institutions. And we are seeing more roles where ACAM or Certified Fraud Examiner (CFE) qualifications are appearing.

Chris Tang, working with accounting firms, consultancies and banks on fraud and risks roles.There is one exception to the Chinese language requirements, in which one of our clients, a major international accounting and consulting firm is hiring a technically strong Manager or AD level professional with excellent English, a good track record of training and nurturing junior staff, and an existing, strong relationship network among financial institutions in Hong Kong. If you fit the bill, please contact Managing Director, Chris Tang.




For further information, please contact:  

Chris Tang (fraud investigations, senior compliance): email Chris

Michael Kwan (compliance, all levels, company secretarial): email Michael

Angel Cheng (company secretarial, compliance, corporate governance): email Angel