The quants market in the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region is undergoing dynamic changes, and industry experts are sharing valuable insights gathered from events like QuantMinds. Matthew Tjoa, Head of Quants and Tech at Selby Jennings Singapore, recently attended the QuantMinds 2023 event in London to discuss the trends and challenges shaping the APAC quants landscape.
Here are some of Matthew's key takeaways from the event, and his advice for companies looking to hire the best talent in quants:
Market Resilience in the Face of Change
How does the quant space respond to new market regimes, and what is the outlook despite global uncertainties?
Despite challenges faced by some major players, the quant finance space remains largely independent of market shifts, and is showing resilience and growth. Larger hedge funds and prop shops are diversifying into new frequencies, strategies, and asset classes, indicating ambitious growth plans for 2024.
AI and Machine Learning Integration
What were the main discussions at QuantMinds regarding the implementation of AI and ML in quant research?
Discussions at QuantMinds focused on integrating AI and ML into quant processes. While the impact is expected to be substantial, industry experts agree it will take time to significantly affect the sector. Quality data sets are deemed crucial.
Hiring Outlook and Regional Consistency
What can hiring managers anticipate in terms of opportunities in 2024?
The consensus is that demand for quants will stay high in the coming year. Hiring managers can expect increased opportunities in 2024, with optimism from the sell side. Technical skillsets are being consistently prioritized and are highly sought after, especially in areas like modelling and machine learning. Additionally, the ability to communicate complex ideas to non-technical stakeholders is crucial. Interestingly, these desired skills and qualities in candidates are largely consistent across regions.
Hotspots for Quants Hiring
In which areas and geographical locations is there a pronounced demand for quants talent?
Geographical hotspots for quants talent include London, Amsterdam, Singapore, Hong Kong, Dubai, and Abu Dhabi, particularly for roles in modeling, research, statistical arbitrage, and machine learning.
Challenges in Hiring and Candidate Preferences
What are the significant challenges companies face when hiring quants talent?
One of the major challenges is a lack of understanding of candidate preferences. Failing to comprehend candidates' desires for a conducive working environment, competitive compensation, challenging problem sets, flexibility, or stability can all hinder successful hiring.
Candidate Priorities and Decision-Making Factors
What factors are critical for quants professionals seeking new roles?
Quants professionals most often prioritize compensation, autonomy, and the freedom to explore new ideas. Mid-junior candidates, in particular, are attracted to roles offering optionality in job scope and internal opportunities.
Advice for Companies
What is your advice for companies looking to hire quants talent?
Companies should utilize their talent partner to attract and secure the most in-demand talent. In a candidate-starved market, talent partners can offer invaluable insights into candidates' motivations and provide guidane on your salary and total compensation packages, reducing the likelihood of missed opportunities and ensuring a more informed hiring process.
If you are seeking additional insights around the APAC Quantitative Analytics, Research & Trading market, please request a call back, and Matthew's team will get in touch with you.
If you are exploring the next opportunity in Quantitative Analytics, Research & Trading, submit your CV today.