The results of the CIO Sentiment Survey broken down into investment impact and themes
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When asked to select the top three challenges impacting their teams, respondents paint a clear picture of stretched teams inadequately supported by necessary systems and tools, particularly when rising pressure on the ESG front was added in.
Understaffed internal teams and a talent shortage are the top challenge, cited by 58 per cent of respondents as being the most significant for their teams. ‘Effectively incorporating sustainability goals’ is, unsurprisingly, also a major challenge, checked by 44 per cent of respondents. Many are also dealing with ‘personal time constraints,’ which, at 40 per cent, has almost doubled compared to previous years.
Top Challenges with the Most Significant Impact on Teams
% of respondents, 2023
Key Representation Metrics
Median, % of asset owners, 2023
Understaffed internal team & talent shortage
.. are considering increasing their investment staff over the next 18 months
Effectively incorporating sustainability goals
.. are requiring more consistent and transparent reporting from managers
Personal time constraints
.. are planning to use investment consultants in the next 3 years, up 4% vs. last year
Lack of necessary systems / tools
.. feel that digital advancements have not significantly enhanced their manager due diligence process
At the other end of the spectrum, coordinating remote environments associated with the pandemic is seen as yesterday’s challenge, with only 11 per cent of respondents checking this option as a serious challenge for teams. But these numbers may not give the full picture, with CalSTRS CIO Chris Ailman drawing a possible link between the pandemic’s legacy of remote work, and staff feeling short of personal time.
“In the remote work environment, home now becomes the office, and I have a pretty disciplined 8am to 5pm lifestyle but see staff doing work late at night and on weekends,” Ailman said. “I’m not asking them to do that but now that they’re at home, suddenly the…natural boundaries we used to have to help with work/life balance have disappeared, and it will take self discipline and technology to recognise those and put things back in balance.”
While asset owners have been working hard to build improved technology into their investment process, 57 per cent feel digital advancements have not significantly enhanced their manager due diligence process.
How Many Days per Week Does Your Organization Require Employees in the Office?
% of Respondents
“They are finding the technology that they have been investing in hasn’t really driven the efficiencies they were expecting,” said Cullen at CaseyQuirk. “So they have had to rely on the relationships they have more, when they feel this efficiency crunch.”
Not a single respondent is running a fully remote operation anymore, with 40 per cent requiring their employees to be in the office 3-4 days a week, and 35 per cent requiring 1-2 days. Most of the remainder have relatively flexible policies, with only 6 per cent requiring employees to be in the office 5 days a week.
Only 20 per cent of respondents feel it is ‘important’ or ‘very important’ whether asset management partners require their investment teams to be in the office.
What Changes are You Looking to Make in Your Internal Resourcing Over the Next 18 Months?
% of respondents
2023 CIO SENTIMENT SURVEY