7 Financial Services Recruitment Companies with HUGE Ambitions for 2016

Financial Services has always been one of the most lucrative sectors and a hallmark for the recruitment industry. The sector was hit hard in the financial crisis, and there was a serious knock on effect for specialist recruiters.

Since the recession there has been a huge opportunity for specialist recruiters who have been able to ride the wave of recovery – benefiting from increased regulation in the financial sector in more recent years, as well as the recent emergence of FinTech.

We caught up with 7 of the leading Financial Services recruitment brands that have witnessed record success in the last few years to give you an insight into the best career opportunities available for experienced recruiters.




Founded in 2003, Investigo started out as a specialist accounting and finance recruiter focused on placements into commerce and industry. They soon leveraged into Banking and Financial Services and have since witnessed exceptional year on year growth. Today their total headcount sits at 175 and they’re recognised as one of the leading employers in recruitment for high-performing consultants.

Their banking and financial services division comprises 50 staff, and is seen as a leader in change and transformation, audit, risk, compliance and finance recruitment.

Investigo has benefitted from the emergence of the FinTech sector in London, and their network of regional offices in the UK (St Albans, Reading, Guildford, Milton Keynes) is growing in response to hiring needs across their strong regional client-base.

Investigo take pride in being easy to deal with, providers of great advice to candidates and in maintaining a strong brand with the highest levels of trust. 

Who they hire:

Investigo are open to hiring recruiters from diverse sectors, and hire based on an individual’s personal attributes as well as their track record. They look for driven, commercially minded people that value entrepreneurialism. They have some of the lowest turnover rates in the industry, with many of the senior management having started as graduates.

Opportunity for Experienced Hires: 

Investigo invest in individuals to drive business growth and motivate their staff with a leading commission structure that allows consultants to earn up to 45% of their NFI, as well as an opportunity to earn significant equity stakes in the business.


A great working culture is a top priority at Investigo and something they believe helps them retain their best talent. They strive to create the right balance of autonomy and structure with a strong sense of team spirit. Employees value the level of autonomy they receive, but equally it isn’t for everybody. If you need a constant nudge and need to be managed closely, it may not be right for you.

Global Mobility: 

Strong performers will always be kept in loop with opportunities for relocation or to take on new challenges. Succession planning is key, and Investigo thrives on a strong backbone of closely-knit high performers keen to take on new business opportunities.

Selby Jennings (part of Phaidon International)



Selby Jennings is the financial services arm of Phaidon International. It’s consultants have seen continued success by operating in specific niches that have historically been under-broked or overpriced within the financial services market.

The brand continues to maintain one of the highest average fee sizes across the contingent industry, and remains the flagship brand for the business globally.

Success in 2015:

2015 was a record year for Phaidon International. The company hit personal bests, as they have done nearly every year since inception, on net revenue, total placements fees, EBIT and total headcount.

Growth in 2016:

In 2016 Phaidon International continues to invest the majority of it’s profit in further growth. Headcount will increase again by 25% to 375 across three continents, and they will open a brand new flagship USA office in New York, with space to fit 100 staff.

Who they hire:

Successful experienced hires at Selby Jennings have typically come from competitive markets, both from within, and outside of financial services.

Opportunity for Experienced Hires: 

For recruiters used to a fast paced environment and working to gain competitive advantage; Selby gives you the platform to do the same – but with bigger fees and an industry leading reward structure.

It’s transparent, meritocratic, and all staff are given development opportunities to maximise their skills, so whether you join with a lot or little experience, you are given the opportunity to succeed.

In the first quarter of Phaidon’s financial year – the top performer in the group had already invoiced £329,000, with the rest of the top five all sitting above £125,000.

Global Mobility: 

Phaidon’s unique growth trajectory offers unrivalled opportunity for promotion within the business. There is no timeline on global mobility, and even if you want to open a brand new office, the technology is already in place to accommodate it’s incubation and development from day one if you have the right vision. For high performers there is a global mentoring program where senior consultants are fast-tracked into management, and management are fast-tracked into directorship, supported by a one-on-one mentor from the leadership team.

Oliver James Associates



A Sunday Time Fast Track 200 and Sunday Time Profit Track 100 company. With 5 established offices and plans for 12 more in the next 4 years – Oliver James is about to ramp up growth to build on its current foundation as a global market leader in financial services recruitment.

The company was built from scratch with no external funding, and is set to double headcount over the next four years to 500 staff across four continents. Most of this growth will come from internal promotions as the business maintains such a high retention rate at 81%.

Within financial services the company increased its revenue from £50m to £65m from 2014/2015 to 2015/2016 and is still growing with very strong average billings of over £200,000/year across the business.

Opportunity for Experienced Hires: 

For experienced external hires, it’s the support structure that really stands out. State of the art technology, an L&D team of 7 to support your team development, and staff retention that speaks volume within recruitment; all vital for growing a strong team in 2016. The Manager of Digital recently joined with 1.5 years recruitment experience, and is now managing a team of 9 from scratch within the space of 12 months.

What they look for:

Oliver James have six key attributes they look for in new hires – competitiveness, positivity, ability to make an impact, keeping informed, a sense of urgency and the power to influence. They will consider people from any recruitment background – it’s the attitude and aptitude to learn that matters.

Global Mobility:

As long as you have a degree and two years recruitment experience, Oliver James Associates can relocate you straight away to Asia, and future opportunities in the US with 3 additional offices opening. This is a great opportunity for people looking to travel with the brand to support them in a new market.

Morgan McKinley



Founded in 1988 and the largest of the organisations on our list, Morgan McKinley is household name in recruitment with offices across 9 countries. They remain a relationship driven organisation with emphasis on building niche talent pools.

Success in 2015:

Morgan McKinley grew by 20% in 2015 to 800 employees globally. An additional global recruitment drive will further increase headcount by 300 people in the next three years, taking headcount from 800 to well over 1,000. Last year saw office moves in the UK, Shanghai and Singapore.

Opportunity for Experienced Hires:

The company believes that hiring experienced people is an excellent way for Morgan McKinley to bring new ideas into the business. It has been key in building a diverse workforce and maintaining an entrepreneurial culture, where people are encouraged to challenge, group-think and to innovate. David Leithead (COO, UK) highlighted that the growing headcount creates tremendous opportunity for fast progression into senior leadership. Morgan McKinley invest heavily in L&D and the managerial level, where there are structured programs that allow people to maximise their potential.

Global Mobility: 

Morgan McKinley see global mobility as a critical factor for business growth. The ‘Global Mobility Policysupports talent by providing a clear and streamlined process for those considering a international move. Morgan McKinley is a global brand meaning that anyone relocating within the business has the best opportunity to hit the ground running.

Eximius Financial (part of The Eximius Group)



From offices in London and Hong Kong, Eximius covers middle office and operations, accounting and finance, risk, change, legal and compliance, IT and sales and marketing roles from mid-board level. Their goal is to create a truly comprehensive recruitment service for their client base, with a specific consultant for every niche vertical.

Eximius is one of the top financial services recruitment brands in London. With a team of over 35 recruiters operating in niche verticals solely within financial services. They have a state-of-the-art database that’s been built up over 8 years, and great client relationships to match.

Success in 2015:

Eximius has just had it’s record year. From June 2014 to 2015 they hit revenue of £22m across the business, after 8 years of trading.

Opportunity for Experienced Hires: 

There are still a number of areas to build out in financial services. Proven billers, and team leader level recruiters will be given a platform with every tool to be successful and grow their own business.

Ed Stevens, MD – points out three key things that Eximius can offer experienced consultants:

-Very competitive compensation (base salary, commission and equity options)

-Complete autonomy with full support to grow and develop a desk or team with P&L responsibility

-Excellent management and director level training and development

Global Mobility: 

Eximius has relocated a number of people between its London and Hong Kong offices. This is absolutely an option for anyone joining the business in an experienced role.

GQR Global Markets



GQR is a business with a refreshing approach, with it’s priorities focused on maintaining and augmenting high-performance and high-productivity rather than simply growing headcount. They seek not to be the biggest, but instead to be the best. 

With offices in the UK (London), the US (Los Angeles and New York) and in Australia (Sydney), GQR is an international Banking & Finance and Financial Technology specialist in the process of expanding it’s breadth into complementary markets, as well as it’s global geographic depth. 

They’re soon to open offices in Houston, Chicago and San Francisco with further launches earmarked in Hong Kong, Canada (Toronto), Brazil (Rio de Janeiro) and Israel (Tel Aviv) in the near future.

Founded in 2009 amid a shrinking market and challenging macroeconomic backdrop, GQR succeeded in growing a strong market share, with a solid foundation for the global specialist brand to build out in leading-edge sectors such as financial technology and regulatory change.

Opportunity for Experienced Hires: 

GQR is an ambitious growth business, growing by both market specialisation and geographic coverage. For these reasons the company is creating more global opportunities now than there ever have been at mid and senior levels throughout the organisation. The comparative youth of the firm also means that strategic and senior level seats remain available to grow into.

GQR seeks potential above all else, and several of GQR’s most successful experienced hires moved countries, markets and sectors when joining the firm. 

Recent examples include an experienced hire acquired from a UK regional education recruitment firm who was re-trained to join a global banking and finance desk in New York, another recruited from an Australian RPO to join the Banking & Finance Relationship Management team and another key hire relocated from a London-based Oil & Gas Engineering recruiter to take up a leadership position with the firms Energy Banking practice in California.  

What they look for:

Exceptional ambition, adventurousness and accountability. High commercial, technical and emotional intelligence. 

Global Mobility: 

An international career is more of an expectation than a possibility at GQR. They have invested heavily in maximising the global mobility opportunity at every level in the business and have demonstrated an incredibly high commitment to international opportunities with an astounding 39% of its people benefitting from international relocation and visa sponsorship.

GQR is willing and able to provide immediate mobility for proven hires. At the entry-level global mobility at GQR starts with meritocracy; setting a goal and as soon as early milestones are achieved setting in place the logistical framework to enable relocation to happen immediately as the goal is hit. Accountability is reciprocated, investment is proactive and an employee’s progression is never an afterthought.

Eames Consulting Group


Eames Consulting operates across financial and professional services. They are particularly strong and known for their expertise in the insurance and banking spaces, as well wider senior search and contingent roles in professional services. Eames have offices in London, Zurich, Singapore and Hong Kong.

 Success in 2015:

2015 was another record year for Eames. With a new office opening in Hong Kong, their global headcount increased to 130. They have experienced year-on-year growth, and maintained consistent double digit growth in NFI. 2015 saw our highest uplift in growth since 2010.

Eames maintained position in The Recruiter Hot 100, and received a Best Companies accreditation.

Growth in 2016:

2016 will see further investment in the training and development of employees careers at Eames. They have 40 opportunities across all divisions and offices, and are actively seeking to open in new markets, particularly New York City.

Who they hire:

Eames look for experienced and proven recruitment professionals who embody their values and have a true passion for what they do and why they do it. A blend of ex-industry professionals working alongside career recruiters bring a high energy, quality led search team with high technical knowledge. 

Opportunity for Experienced Hires:

Working at Eames is challenging, rewarding and fun. Everyone has clearly defined criteria for promotion to each level, whether in management or sales, so growing and developing at Eames is structured, transparent, achievable and financially rewarding.

Employees describe Eames as a mature environment with a knowledgeable, high performing team who are always learning. 20% of the team were promoted into more senior roles last year.

Global Mobility:

Eames offer structured opportunities to move between global offices. Recently some of the UK team moved overseas to Singapore, and there is the opportunity for any experienced consultant to join the business from abroad with the possibility of relocation. 

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