Scotland well placed to lead the recovery of the financial services industry



Stuart Chalmers, Managing Director – Scotland Financial Services Lead, said that the 160,000 employees of Scotland’s financial services should be very proud of the way they adapted to support companies across the country: evidenced by the positivity on display at The ’s Innovation for Recovery webinar, hosted by Kim McAllister. 

The exciting event is available below as part of The ‘s webinar series.

Financial Services certainly reacted quickly, aware of the vital role they have in stabilising the economy. Services like payment holidays for loans were rolled out quickly, along with scaling up online capabilities as customers turned increasingly to apps and online banking to access and manage their finances. In a matter of weeks, they put in the processes to channel government-backed loans to businesses as quickly as possible.

In a single week, Accenture moved 60,000 members of staff at one bank onto Microsoft Teams to facilitate home working.

Helen Lindsay, Senior Manager – Scotland Human Potential/Talent & Organisation Lead at Accenture discussed the acceleration of the modernisation of banking and other financial services which built in greater productivity. She mentioned the use of chatbots and the need to plan in human interaction and reskill the workforce.

The challenges to save money and make efficiencies remain, and the impact of the pandemic is yet to be seen. How to balance necessary cost reduction with the changing demands of the COVID environment and how to balance the books when it is likely that many business customers may default on loans is still a question for many financial institutions.

There is the expectation that more retail and commercial loans will be faulted, as borrowers struggle to make scheduled payments, however Stuart pointed out a lot of the money is in the system, it just remains to be seen how that will be spent. Will it be used to support growth and create jobs?

Despite the obvious challenges, all three on the panel agreed there is cause for optimism.

Gary Taylor, managing director digital workplace lead financial services, said he believes the talent in Scotland, together with the possibility of a better work life balance, may tempt a lot of companies away from the traditional centres like London.

Watch the webinar, hosted by Kim McAllister. It is available to watch online as part of The ’s Innovation for Recovery webinar series.

For more information please visit


Leave A Reply