To meet a growing customer demand, Fidelity Investments is hiring 4,000 new client-facing roles, a 15 percent increase, across the U.S. In North Texas, that includes bringing on hundreds of employees over the next six months.
Locally, Fidelity said that amounts to 550 new employees. Those customer-facing associates are in addition to positions in other sectors, like technology and operations, that Fidelity plans to keep hiring in the future.
As workforce demand surges, Fidelity said it enhanced its recruitment process with machine learning, natural language processing, and expanded channels to reach new talent and ensure job descriptions are inclusive and non-biased. That will contribute to candidate screening and the ability to increase the diversity of applicants.
“A diverse and inclusive workforce is critical in helping us create relevant and differentiated experiences for our customers—and that holds true whether we are hiring 10 people or 4,000,” spokesperson Janelle O’Haugherty said in an email to Dallas Innovates. “The people we’ve hired over the last several months represent more diversity than we’ve traditionally seen in our new hires.”
The company also plans to actively recruit 1,000 college and university students for the 2021 summer internship program and 500 graduates of 2021 to participate in post-grad training programs. For instance, the Leap program is a technical talent development program for recent college graduates that want to pursue careers in technology at Fidelity.
It’s all part of Fidelity continually fueling its innovation talent pipeline, O’Haugherty says.
In April, Fidelity announced plans to recruit and hire some 2,000 people nationwide, including 300 in North Texas. The new roles were meant to further strengthen the company’s ability “to deliver the best customer experience in the industry” during this challenging period and beyond.
Fidelity’s status as a privately-held company for 70 years, along with its scale, are significant assets to both support employees and continuously reinvest in the business. Despite the pandemic, the company continues to research and develop new capabilities, as well as improve and lower the costs of products and services.
Year-to-date, of the 5,000 new people that Fidelity has employed across its 10 U.S. locations, including Westlake, 10 percent of those supported technology. Fidelity employs around 6,000 people in North Texas at multiple offices and the 337-acre Westlake campus.
Fidelity told us that the particular need at this moment in time is on responding to client needs. The Boston-based multinational financial services corporation made a commitment to strengthen and secure its clients’ financial well-being, especially as COVID-19 continues to surge.
The complex economic environment and market volatility brought on by the pandemic has led to millions of new and existing customers to open accounts, according to Fidelity. That means that trading activity has increased, savings contributions have been boosted, and overall, the need for financial support and guidance has skyrocketed.
“We continue to see very strong growth, both in new accounts to Fidelity as well as deeper engagement from our existing client base,” Kathleen Murphy, president of Personal Investing at Fidelity, said in a statement. “As part of our steadfast mission to serve our clients, we continue to expand our number of associates and invest in the long-term development of our people so that we’re well positioned to deliver the best customer experience—both now and in the future.”
The 4,000 new client-facing positions includes financial advisors, licensed representatives, and customer service representatives, half of which are predicted to be filled by the end of the year.
While some of those roles require experience in financial services, Fidelity is mainly scouting for individuals who “share the company’s passion for premier customer service.” But, its onboarding and assimilation processes were improved to increase new hire sentiment, the company said.
One asset that Fidelity accelerated its focus on was virtual reality, which is driven by the Fidelity Center for Applied Technology (FCAT). In May, as part of a remote onboarding, Fidelity implemented a VR pilot program for more than 140 employees, including those in Westlake.
Employees in the Fidelity YOU program were given virtual reality headsets that replicated a two-week in-person training process. The intent was to use the tech to build deeper connections with new colleagues, network, and leverage FCAT’s existing VR proof-of-concept.
Earlier this year, Fidelity announced that it was offering expedited hiring, onboarding, and training processes, in addition to work-from-home arrangements.
In mid-March, Fidelity began offering a bundle of enhanced benefits to support “the total lives” of its employees, including the time needed to manage unexpected home-life events and COVID-19 screening and testing services for associates and their families.
“Fidelity is committed to doing everything we can to evolve the support of our clients and our people as their needs evolve over the course of the pandemic,” Bill Ackerman, head of Human Resources, Fidelity Investments, said. “Fidelity has continued to act on associate needs by providing benefits enhancements to help them navigate these challenging times, including a working caregiver subsidy, access to expert elder- and child-care coordinators, more flexible work options, matching gifts to different causes, and a work-from-home expense allowance.”
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