Given the nature of their work, which is fast-paced, yet meticulous, dynamic yet disciplined, Forex traders must be relentless in pursuing and maintaining the highest standard of excellence when it comes to serving their clients.
So, given the sharp growth of the island’s Forex sector over the past decade, and the regulatory and geographic challenges of tapping the right talent, how do such companies, based in Cyprus, source and maintain their high-performing team?
To get to the answers, Careers Express interviewed Yiota Tsiokri, Human Resources Manager at Windsor Brokers, the first Forex company to be established in Cyprus in 1988.
Right from the beginning, what kind of culture did Windsor foster to establish and grow the organisation?
“Our company started as a family business back in 1988 – even CySEC [the Cyprus Securities and Exchange Commission] did not exist at that time. Windsor has loyal employees for the last 20-25 years and loyal clients of 10 years.
“We evolved into a people-centric environment; we work hard and have fun at the same time and, most importantly, employees have close working and friendly relationships with each other.”
Forex companies are seen as flexible, fast-paced and innovative. How would you say a Forex company’s work culture differs from that of other local businesses?
“The environment is diverse, multi-cultural and the markets we are in can be extremely volatile. Changes are happening all the time, we need to be agile to adapt to those new changes.
“We have low tolerance for mistakes, as we deal with clients’ money and mistakes can be costly.”
Where does Windsor Brokers usually find its talent pool?
“We use several different sources; mainly we advertise through the most popular websites. We experiment with different platforms, track results based on numbers of applicants against hires and different roles and skills.”
“From social media, we mainly use LinkedIn where we track passive candidates that match the qualifications and skills required.
“We use well-established recruitment agencies, which, through our long-term collaboration, we tested their quality of service.
“We also use referrals; we believe our employees are the best ambassadors of our brand.”
“Finally, our careers page provides a good overview for our people, our values and culture, where candidates could seek regular updates.
“We are mainly attracting candidates from Cyprus; we also recruit from abroad for language skills and from countries with a high academic background and a high unemployment rate.”
According to some reports, skill-gaps are slowing resourcing in certain teams. Which skill-sets are challenging to find?
“At the moment, the job market is fluid and dynamic, which makes it hard to find the right candidate with the right positions. As a fin-tech company, we are looking for high technical skills whereas the market is limited.
“Recruiting employees who speak various non-European languages is another challenge.”
How would you describe the profile of a successful Forex professional?
“A good, all-around professional, flexible with advanced digital skills and a can-do mentality.”
What advice would you give to a job seeker looking for a career in Forex?
“To be versatile, have a lifelong learning mind-set and to keep themselves up to date about the world, which has a direct impact on our business.”
Looking ahead, the skill disruptions in the workplace seem like they will continue. What new skill trends do you foresee in Forex, and how will that create new opportunities for the Cyprus labour force?
“Since January 2021, the employment visa allowance will increase from 10 to 70 per cent which will allow us to recruit more foreigners and fill open positions. With additional licences and low taxation, IT companies will enter Cyprus and will change the IT candidate market drastically.
Meanwhile, we are living in the digital era; digital skills will be increasingly on demand for employability; social skills will definitely enhance the employee experience.
“Ultimately, Forex is a fast-paced, dynamic and demanding industry, and people need to keep up the speed and stay abreast to survive.”