You are here

Lockdown lets German bankers get jobs without leaving home

New York

JOB hunting during the coronavirus crisis may be challenging, but it has allowed some people to secure a banking position without ever having to leave home.

Given travel and contact restrictions, some German lenders say they've been filling vacant roles solely through video conferencing and other digital means in the past few months.

"That would have been unthinkable back in February," said Thore Behrens, a partner at Frankfurt-based headhunter Banking Consult.

BayernLB, DZ Bank and DekaBank - with combined assets of about US$1 trillion - are among companies in the industry that have recently awarded job contracts without meeting the successful candidate in person.

Your feedback is important to us

Tell us what you think. Email us at

Most of the people that BayernLB has hired this way applied for junior positions, according to Susanne Kober, the head of human resources. Mr Behrens said his firm helped a lender recruit a new board member using only online interviews.

"This is a surprising development, especially for the banking industry, given that it's a people-to-people business with long-established ways of doing things," he said. "We're not talking about startup companies here."

These new practices extend be-yond interviews. At DZ Bank, job candidates who were due to attend in-person assessment centres this spring were instead asked to participate digitally. Candidates had to complete four out of five components at home - an initial greeting, an online test, a case study, and then an interview. The group exercise was cancelled, spokesman Uwe Wulf said.

Sounds likes any banking applicants who don't already have a decent Internet connection may want to invest in one - along with some smart clothes, of course. BLOOMBERG

BT is now on Telegram!

For daily updates on weekdays and specially selected content for the weekend. Subscribe to