Dubai: The Emirates Institute for Banking and Financial Studies (EIBFS), in its three-and-a-half decade history, has evolved into a premier institute for training UAE national talent for the country’s booming financial services industry.
Since its establishment in 1983, EIBFS has delivered 7,882 programmes to more than 175,668 professionals in the sector. The number of UAE nationals who participated stands at 58,244, abouth 33 per cent of the total number of participants.
“EIBFS has been mandated to play an important role in the Federal Government’s Emiratisation policy focused on the banking and finance sector,” said Jamal Al Jasmi, General Manager, EIBFS.
Given the trend that we have seen over the years, I can say that we will exceed our target in 2018.”
- Jamal Al Jasmi | General manager of the EIBFS
“In 2016 the UAE Federal Council of Ministers a new Emiratisation strategy for the human resources committee in the field of banking and financial sector. The implementation of the new strategy is vital to achieve the goals of the Emiratisation policies in the banking sector.”
In terms of the programmes, the Annual Training Plan (ATP) for the banking sector is the largest category. In 2017, 586 programmes were conducted with a total of 14,017 participants. The total number of UAE nationals who participated in the ATP for banking professionals stood at 3,738 or 27 per cent of the total number of participants (14,017).
The Insurance Training programmes had 396 UAE nationals (15 per cent of the total participants). The Private Training Programme that caters to the needs of particular banks and insurance companies at their request, witnessed 58 per cent participation from UAE nationals working in those organisations.
Acceptance from strategic partners
The ‘Al Masrafi’ initiative, which EIBFS funded all banks for, has found acceptance and support from the strategic partners in the Emiratisation process in the banking and financial sector.
The Al Masrafi initiative is aimed at increasing the Emiratisation rate in the banking sector through training and qualifying UAE nationals.
The EIBFS signed an agreement with Emirates Islamic, Rak Bank, Emirates NBD, Union National Bank and Noor Bank.
The total number of UAE nationals who were part of the Masrafi programmes in 2017 totalled 116 — both men and women. The EIBFS conducted professional certificate programmes that included certified banking operations and certified credit management for the UAE nationals in these banks.
For the insurance sector, the EIBFS conducted a total of three Al Shamil programmes for operational and soft skills with 41 UAE nationals attending.
“It’s important to ensure that all stakeholders make an effort to prepare UAE nationals for mid-management and senior roles. This would in turn have a positive impact on fresh hires and [one the] ones who are currently in junior roles. We have seen over the years that a percentage of UAE nationals leave banking because of lack of growth within the institution they work. Mentorship and programmes such as banks’ management associate with [the] EIBFS help in this regard,” said Al Jasmi.
In May 2017, as part of the Leadership Development Programme, 11 Emirati bankers attended the programme at the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia. The EIBFS funds 50 per cent of this leadership training program. Last year in 2016, 20 Emirati bankers attended the program.
The EIBFS also plays an important role in supporting the placement of UAE nationals at various financial institution. The EIBFS is now a strategic partner of Careers Festival organised by the Ministry of Human Resources and Emiratisation as well as the Government Accelerators.
In February 2017, the Careers Festival hosted at the EIBFS Dubai campus saw the participation of 80 financial companies that included banks, insurance companies and money exchanges.
Starting late 2016 and in 2017, Careers Festivals organised by the EIBFS saw about 900 UAE nationals being recruited by various banks, insurance companies and financial institutions that include money exchanges.