UBS has a new way to keep 20,000 technologists happy


Like most big banks, UBS has a lot of people in its technology function. – Around 20,000 of its 72,000 employees work in technology worldwide. Like other big banks, UBS is looking to cut its tech spending while simultaneously preventing its technologists from leaving for jobs elsewhere.

Speaking last week, UBS CEO Ralph Hamers said the bank wants to streamline its technology function while creating an “engineering culture” that is “driven by engineers” rather than managers and project leaders. It is possible to do more efficient engineering work with fewer people, Hamers added.

Hamers’ comments follow a reshuffle in UBS’s technical hierarchy that has seen the emergence of a new career path for its developers.

In 2018, the bank introduced the concept of “distinguished engineers “ used by banks like Morgan Stanley to differentiate its most skilled and influential engineers. He then expanded that level to include a higher level of “technology fellows” who made special engineering contributions to the bank, and then added a new category of “certified engineers” as the first rung of the three levels.

UBS developers can become Certified Engineers by collecting “badges” as shown below.

Although the badges may appear to be reminiscent of the Boy Scout movement, they were successful and are considered “fun” according to UBS technical director Rick Carey, himself a technology specialist at the bank.

As UBS engineers collect the new badges and move up their new technological hierarchy, the bank is strengthening its ranks outside of expensive financial centers. UBS has just opened a new office at Fabryczna Office Park in Krakow, Poland. 300 technologists have already been hired in Poland this year.

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photo by Melinda martin khan to Unsplash

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