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Luxembourg Market Update: Q1 2020

Following on from a busy 2nd half of 2019, the opening quarter of 2020 has seen a continuation of hiring trends across all sectors most noticeably funds & asset management.  KR Recruitment has hired a wide variety of roles with both financial and non-financial services clients. In the funds/asset management sector, the trend of insourcing operations, combined with establishment of AIFM and other structures has created strong demand for candidates, in the typical accounting and corporate secretarial fields, but increasingly in regulatory positions including risk, compliance and portfolio management oversight.


While the short term poses some uncertainty, we are still seeing clients planning for expansion and growth in the funds sector. Once we have completed these necessary measures to protect our health, our families and our friend’s health, indications are that the growth in this sector will continue. Things are changing very quickly however, pretty much on a daily basis, plans may therefore change as the situation evolves.


Here at KR we remain well positioned to assist our funds, asset management and financial services clients with recruitment plans for Q2 and beyond. We are in regular contact with candidates, and many are still open to moving for the right opportunity.


Trends observed in the Luxembourg employment market 2020 YTD


  • The strongest candidates are still receiving interest and offers from multiple companies; this competition for talent in the marketplace means that companies who can create a streamlined recruitment process are proving successful.


  • The average hiring fee has continued to grow, c15% YOY. Salaries have gone up, both naturally through indexation and annual raises but also through good offers from competitors.  Hiring companies need to be aware of this dynamic and make appropriate financial offers, or risk losing out to your competitors.


  • In addition to a significant increase in salary levels, we are also seeing companies giving increased benefits to their employees in order to compete with the financial services companies (who offer the banking convention).  Companies are now offering an increased number of holidays, increased bonus, extra fringe benefits such as insurance and pensions. These extra benefits can often tip the balance in their favour.


  • KR Recruitment continues to see a good mix of mid-level roles at 60k-75k, and a substantial increase in more senior roles 100k+.  We have seen an upward trend on the average fee, showing that more senior roles are being placed in the market.  This shows Luxembourg continues to move toward more “decision making” / “senior management” employment. 


  • The demand for experienced candidates particularly across risk & compliance functions has continued. We are seeing a skills shortage in these particular areas, which in turn makes hiring for these roles more difficult and costly.


Outlook for Q2/Q3 in Luxembourg

  • Q2 2020 is looking challenging and uncertain to say the least; the fact that candidates and clients cannot meet each other face-to-face is a complicating factor. In times of uncertainty people tend to stick to what they know. This is no different in recruitment. It really depends on the candidate; some are comfortable to interview over VC and make decisions while others are not. This is at the forefront of our discussions with candidates now. This way we can avoid wasting peoples time.


  • Whilst we understand why some clients have put their recruitment on hold in order to see how the COVID-19 situation plays out, many others are continuing their recruitment and arranging ‘virtual’ interviews. We have had several job offers and acceptances through VC interview.


  • The trend of certain skills shortages is continuing in Luxembourg, particularly in risk & compliance as mentioned previously. We are therefore seeing clients hiring these roles from different functions and providing some on the job training to compensate. We expect this trend to continue.


Examples of roles successfully placed Q1 2020


  • Head of Corporate Secretarial (Asset Management)- €140k
  • Head of Consolidation (Asset Management) - €115k
  • Finance Manager (Real Estate) €90k
  • Senior Real Estate Accountants - €55k to 70k
  • Corporate Secretarial Manager (Fiduciary)– €105k
  • Senior Portfolio Manager - €120k
  • Transaction Lawyer - €130k
  • Financial Controller (Private Equity) - €70k
  • Senior Corporate Secretary (Private Equity) - €75k


If you would like further information on the marketplace, or to have an open discussion about your recruitment needs (without any obligation or commitment to move forward); feel free to contact me at any time. 


Luke Guerin (Executive Consultant & Head of Funds Recruitment)

00 352 671 046 098.

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