Citi is trying a different approach than its competitors and has set up offices at the beach.
The company has opened their new hub city of Malaga on Spain’s Costa del Sol for their junior staff.
Applicants are drawn by the prospect of a reprieve from traditional grueling hours, though salaries are lower.
The bank has hired 27 people so far. They want a total of 30. This group is mostly made up of people aged 22 to 26, most of whom come from 20 different countries (22 on average). They speak 15 different languages on average.
Salaries in Malaga are still significantly lower than those in London and New York, but the cost of living is also reduced as accommodation and food will be less expensive.
Investment bankers in London typically work 65-70 hours per week during quieter periods, but it can be much more depending on the season.
The first day at the office included a round of hobnobbing with Malaga’s Mayor. The venue formally opened on Wednesday.
Bank representatives clarified that these new jobs are primarily office-based and, as such, won’t be all remote.
Citi first announced its plan in March, saying it was meant to help it reduce turnover and draw new people to the industry. As the attraction of tech jobs and other companies have increased due to their high salaries with less demanding positions, Citi seems to have tried this tactic as well.
“Lots of Junior Bankers are leaving their jobs, and the main reason is better work-life balance. Whether it’s getting more free time or enjoying more of what life has to offer, many Junior Bankers simply want to be more in control.” The Citi Bank speaker said, “At Citi, we are listening.”
It seems like banks are finally being nice to their employees. They’re paying them more and making Fridays without Zoom.
In the past few years, for instance, young staff at Goldman Sachs have fought against their supervisors about the issue of burnout. They’ve also spoken out on time pressures and, most recently, alleged cutbacks in coffee perks.
In May, Goldman appeared to take a step towards change when it said staff could take as much holiday as they wanted. However, junior bankers still have a fixed holiday entitlement.
Recently, Goldman has made changes to their policy for holidays – senior staff are now able to take vacations as long as they need, while junior employees still get a fixed number of days off.