Career opportunities in UBS Group Finance
Meet Our People
We are committed to being a company that attracts, develops and retains highly qualified people.
Our employees regularly take advantage of the breadth of our businesses, global career opportunities, and a collaborative, performance-oriented culture as a platform for their individual success.
Meet some of our talented Group Finance employees here:
- Joined UBS in 2007 in Wealth Management Product Control
- 11 years experience in a Singapore-based bank
Breadth and depth of the UBS finance model
When I think about what makes UBS Finance a fulfilling place to work, the first thing that comes to my mind is the diversity of the roles available and the multi-location opportunities that we can tap into.
My first role in UBS Finance was in Japan as a Wealth Management Product Controller. I moved back to Singapore to take on a regional role, covering the Asia Pacific locations.
I find it inspiring to work in a function that is constantly striving to improve because it is driven to be the best it can be.
Within UBS Finance new roles were created by integrating teams, streamlining our services and enhancing business partnering. These changes were done in the context of UBS Finance repositioning itself to deliver maximum value to stakeholders.
Since joining UBS, I have observed that my appetite to deliver quality services grew when I realized that helping one another is an intrinsic part of the UBS Finance culture. My colleagues in Japan were exceptionally helpful when I first joined. They were patient and went beyond their responsibilities by teaching me what I needed to know to do my work.
UBS Finance provides us with the necessary tools to strike the right balance with work, leisure, family and personal life. It introduced a number of family-friendly policies, including flexible hours for working parents and remote desktop access that enables employees to work from home. In addition, we have frequent bilateral conversations with staff members where we get the opportunity to hear their concerns and discuss the most favorable ways to address them. It is often such intangible benefits that transform a good firm into an outstanding work environment.
- Joined UBS in 2011
- 3 years experience in tax at a “Big 4” accountancy firm
Education and Training
Group Finance provides a dynamic platform for continuous professional development, based on the concept of broadening and enhancing one’s knowledge and skills. Since joining, I have already had access to numerous training opportunities covering a wide variety of subjects, across several formats.
Group Finance plays a pivotal role as a core advisory unit supporting various areas of the bank. Courses offered by UBS Business University helped me gain a better understanding of the UBS business divisions, how Group Finance functions, and the intricate relationship that exists among our daily tasks and the vision that senior management has.
I recently attended the REACH training program, which stands for Risk awareness, Empowering Staff, Analytical Skills and Challenge. This three-day course gave us confidence to challenge all members of staff, irrespective of their rank and hierarchy, to ensure that risks are kept to a minimum and that UBS’s reputation as a leading financial services institution is kept intact. Although I am not usually one to offer to speak in public, the course equipped me with the necessary drive and confidence to put my presentation skills into practice.
These courses, together with the regular support and advice I receive from management, have ensured that I am always geared towards self improvement.
When I joined UBS, I was pleasantly surprised to realize how much flexibility we have to manage our own work. This approach enables me to focus on work while also striking the right work-life balance.
I was also very impressed by the open door policy that is advocated by senior management. Our relatively flat organization structure and the prevalence of an open, friendly environment makes the expertise and knowledge of more experienced colleagues accessible to everyone.
Social events are organized to ensure that employees are given opportunities to network with colleagues. The last event I participated in was the Annual Finance Rounder’s tournament, which was a chance for me to network with departmental colleagues and other Group Finance staff.
Joined UBS in 2011 after having spent 14 years at a global bank
My impression of UBS is that of an affable paradox - a multinational global organization that somehow still manages to make me feel that I am part of a close knit inclusive family. In spite of it having structures and hierarchies, to me it does not feel siloed. The pervasiveness of cross divisional collaboration, cross functional roles and employment opportunities, as well as cross departmental social events contributes to embed the notion that we all share a similar objective.
I am based in Zurich and work alongside people with various nationalities. While a number of my colleagues speak different languages, they always ensure that when I am around, they converse in a language that I am comfortable with. There are, moreover, numerous social events that offer everyone the outlet to network and get to know one another.
I am from London and could have stayed there if I wanted to, but one of the many reasons why I chose UBS to continue my career is because it is a firm that has different types of businesses to those I was used to. For example, I have not yet had the chance to be exposed to a wealth management business and being in UBS, I know that such an opportunity is bound to be around the corner. My role is challenging and offers tremendous variety, which keep me both interested and motivated.
Most talented individuals recognize UBS for what it is - a firm that offers excellent opportunities. You can have many careers in one career at UBS, starting in one particular department, then having the possibility to move to other parts of the firm, across various countries, and this can be extremely rewarding. I have already seen a number of people who have been transferred internally, including my first line manager who was previously working in Zurich but is now based in Stamford, Connecticut in the USA.
The benefit of such moves is wide-ranging and the most notable ones are the confidence boost, the networking, as well as the learning opportunities. In locations like Singapore, you will end up knowing as much about risk and operations as about finance, since you will get the chance to see the whole front-to-back process working on a smaller scale.
Reward & Recognition
Rewards can be looked at in many ways, one of which is financial based on a salary and a variable bonus. Another is letting people know they have done a good job; a simple “thank you” is very motivating for people. On a quarterly basis, we have the CFO Leadership Award, which is a company wide recognition within Group Finance for an outstanding job done. Such programs motivate individuals to strive to accomplish excellent work.
Recognition can also be on a more informal basis where managers show trust in someone’s ability to manage their own work. Such trust ensures that the employee is empowered to determine when and how to carry out their work. This freedom can be a motivator and a boost in morale in its own right. This approach is widely adopted at UBS.
- Joined UBS in 2004
- 3 years experience “Big 4” firm (focus on Manufacturing and Consumer Products)
UBS Group Finance has made me feel empowered to make difficult decisions, generate potent ideas, carry out complicated analyses and solve complex problems. The multitude of bright and talented individuals we have access to puts us in the enviable position of having immediate recourse to a pool of unparalleled knowledge and expertise.
It is encouraging to feel that my hard work and dedication over the years have earned me the respect of my colleagues and the independence to manage my work and be accountable for the processes I own. Although I go to my line manager for guidance and advice, I do not feel micro managed - I am empowered to make decisions and trusted to marry my line manager's advice with my aptitude to find the most effective methods to fulfill my responsibilities.
Every year, our team volunteers at the Greater Chicago Food Depository. We enjoy contributing to our community but we also like opportunity to network. It is a lot of fun to see managers working in an assembly line alongside us. These community events often end with the whole team attending a baseball game where we can enjoy catching up with colleagues in an informal basis.
Such events help reinvigorate the notion that we all belong to the same team and can work harmoniously together to reach a common goal - that our different experiences, personalities, cultures and attitudes make us stronger.
I initially came to UBS as a senior accountant and within only a couple of years I had several direct reports. Even though I was a valued member of the team, my line manager at the time recognized that in order for me to broaden my horizon and enhance my knowledge of finance, I needed a new challenge. He therefore helped me find opportunities in business controlling and supported me with the transfer.
The opportunities we have to move internally enable us to maneuver our careers in different directions based on our preferences. UBS Group Finance has given me a career where I can delve deeper into the cores of finance, while nurturing stimulating relationships with people from other teams
Joined in UBS March 2008, first full time job
I find UBS Group Finance an intellectually stimulating place to work because of the variety of tasks and responsibilities. s. I joined UBS Finance Operations, where I worked closely with the brokerage department to process and investigate foreign currency exchanges and client money transfers. I was in this role for three years before an opportunity in Wealth Management Americas CFO opened up.
In my new role I became responsible for reporting and analyzing the Wealth Management Americas financials every month. Most of my training has been on the job with the help of my line manager. She has been an integral part of walking me through all the tools I need, and her regular guidance is strongly geared towards succession planning.
I work in a small location with only a few of us in the treasury group. Our day-to-day work includes cash management, accounts management and forecasting both daily and monthly cash flows. We also work with the investment group, managing cash and ensuring that transactions are settled.
Although it can get hectic sometimes, the challenge keeps me motivated and the work presents numerous opportunities to develop myself both professionally and intellectually. Moreover, the Group CFO has always shown a willingness to enable international mobility and I hope to have this opportunity someday. This is one of the many advantages of working in a multinational company, along with the daily chance to interact with people across cultures.
Education and training
The fact that I am a capable person was recognized and applauded by my manager, which made me feel even more motivated to deliver quality work. She helped me identify the areas in which I needed further development and encouraged me to access the UBS Business University’s resources. So far, I have already done some financial review training, and learned about UBS’s operational risk framework.
My goal this year is to participate in a training session outside of Utah, which will also give me an opportunity to improve my networking skills and get to know individuals from other areas of the firm.
UBS often organizes community events which we look forward to. These events range from doing mailing orders for charity organizations to Junior Achievement programs where we volunteer in elementary schools and carry out 1-2 hours of tutoring sessions per week. These programs are rewarding in numerous ways, especially when we get to see first-hand the difference we are making in the lives of others.
- Joined UBS in 2006
- 8 years audit experience with a Big Four firm in the UK and South Africa
- 6 years Equities Product Control experience (non-UBS)
Finance at UBS Culture
Joining UBS was a refreshing change compared to my previous jobs. I was not treated like a resource just to get a job done, but treated as an individual. As a new father in the year I joined, I had fantastic support for my work-life balance with flexible working arrangements. I could turn to the Family Matters network for advice, and there was no mentality of having to be in the office just for the sake of it; meritocracy in practice.
Our Performance Measurement and Management process has both highlighted my strengths and the competencies I need to improve on, and has enabled me opportunities for me to develop these competencies. Each move I have made here has had strong management support. I started within Financial Accounting Experts before moving and applying my skill set in a New Business Initiatives role. I now use my stakeholder management skills and combine these with my technical knowledge in my newly expanded role developing a reporting suite for Operational Risk.
There’s a wide range of training, and distinct learning pathways for soft skills and technical skills. I’ve seen people apply these in their jobs, witnessing first hand how they have put these new skills into action The training at UBS has enhanced my prior industry experience by transforming me from a “doer” to a leader, and my aspiration is to become a trusted advisor for senior management.
I was first involved with community affairs activities in Group Finance in 2007 and then went on to chair the London Finance working group. This is the first employer I’ve worked for where there is a dedicated, formal working group within the function for community affairs. It has given me great personal satisfaction to help those in need in our local Hackney and Shoreditch area, and have our leaders personally sponsor and thank us for our efforts. Volunteering is seen as part of my roles and responsibilities at UBS, rather than just an “add-on” to my formal job.
- Joined UBS in October 2007
- 3 years taxation and business services experience with “Big 4” chartered accounting firm
- 11 years experience in Wealth Management (Finance and Controlling)
Breadth and depth of the UBS finance model
For me, one of the characteristics that makes this an interesting and fulfilling place to work is the nature of our role as a business partner. We work closely with senior management teams and numerous other functions in the organization, which gives us the chance to be involved in a range of tasks and interact with a variety of people. As a result of this exposure, I now have a reasonable understanding of how the various cogs of this global organization fit together. This is critical, because I work by myself in the Melbourne office, since the rest of my team is spread all over the world and my line manager is in Sydney.
I first started as a product controller working in a team of four. When my line manager went on maternity leave, I was given the opportunity to take over the CFO role, which proved to be both challenging and an amazing learning experience.
When the Wealth Management division was moved to Sydney as part of a restructuring, I expressed my preference to stay in Melbourne. This is one of the many advantages of working for such a global company. UBS has the culture and the infrastructure for managers to support their direct reports without them being in the same office, and employees can often have the flexibility to strike the perfect work-life balance.
Being in UBS Finance enables me to explore an exceptionally dynamic environment where we have to deal with fluctuating markets, changing strategies, increased regulatory and compliance policies, as well as complex data sets. I try to stay on top of all the changes, but it is reassuring to know that my line manager and my colleagues can advise or assist. As a result, my team can deliver the distinctive quality analyses that make us an effective partner for the other areas of the firm.
Flexible working arrangements are supported
One of the key attractions for me as a working mother has been the scope for flexible work arrangements. I have a young family, and there were no qualms when I requested a four-day work week. In fact, management has been very supportive. I have been supplied with a laptop so that I can connect remotely and carry out my work on days when I cannot be in the office. The fact that I can work non standard business hours has provided me with the much needed freedom to take on a more active role in my kids’ schooling and spend more time with my family.
Despite working in a different location from my colleagues and having a non-standard workweek, I have never felt micro-managed. It is refreshing to know that I have the confidence and trust of my line manager. Then again, I have never disappointed my clients and stakeholders because I have always delivered the results that are expected from me.
- Joined UBS in 1995
- Started career at “Big 4” firm as an audit assistant
- 2 years as Finance Manager in a securities house
- 3 years as Project Manager
- 3 years leading the Singapore Product Control team
- Currently in a Location Controller role overseeing 11 legal entities, including UBS AG Singapore and 6 entities in Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines.
Asia Pacific is a great example of diversity in practice. Interacting with 13 different nationalities that do not have English as their native language can be both challenging and exciting. The differences in culture and attitudes present a nice challenge as they bring a fresh perspective to issues where you would tend to assume there is only one solution.
For me, it is a privilege to work with the smaller-sized operations in South East Asia, which includes Malaysia, Thailand, Indonesia and Philippines. These locations, which have fewer people than one office in London, enable me to deal with diversified issues that I would not normally see in bigger locations.
The diversity and variety of people and issues make UBS a great place to work.
We promote flexible work arrangements to enable employees to meet demands on their schedule and help with their work-life balance. UBS has implemented the technology to enable us to access our work PC remotely. We not only allow but sometimes even encourage people to use this technology to work from home. Everyone in the bank, especially the new joiners, has embraced and enjoys the opportunity to use these arrangements.
We have a culture of inclusiveness, where we aim to get the buy-in of everyone, including the smaller locations, before moving forward with a strategy. It is not the case that everything is decided by the bigger locations. This differentiates us as a company - everyone can have a voice that is being listened to and views that are being taken into consideration.
When we have Group Finance team events in Asia, everyone from Product Control, Finance Shared Services, Regional Controlling & Accounting, and Group Treasury is included. We have been doing this successfully for a number of years, whether it is a Christmas party, a Town Hall meeting or even workshops to talk about certain issues. It is crucial that we do not lose our identity and continue to feel part of the bigger finance family.
- Joined UBS Infrastructure Service Lead Finance in 2009, moved to a Controller role for End User Services (EUS) Finance in 2011
- 2 years at a consumer health firm (finance rotational program)
- 2 years at a global investment bank in IT Finance
- 1 year at a financial research firm in financial planning analysis
Career Development and Mobility
Compared to other organizations, UBS stands out in more ways than one. But the ease of internal mobility and the ready access we have to senior management, in my opinion, makes UBS Group Finance stand head and shoulders above the rest. Being a global function, UBS Group Finance provides plenty of opportunities to move internally and to broaden one’s experience.
I had been in the Infrastructure Service Lead Finance role for two years when I felt that I needed a new challenge. Upon expressing an interest in a business controller role, my line manager was immensely supportive and also guided me through the internal application procedure with resulted in me getting the job.
One of my long-term career goals is to be more involved in the decision-making process, and I think I’ll have this opportunity at UBS. The finance industry is constantly changing and it is this dynamic that makes the Group Finance environment an enriching place.
In UBS Group Finance we realize and acknowledge that if we seize the opportunities available to us, we will indubitably experience the career progression we desire. There is a strong team mentality, which is further strengthened by the regular social events that are organized. The availability of supportive technologies and the willingness to work together make this global company feel like a close circle of friends and bring the semblance that colleagues are within an arm’s length reach when they are in fact thousands of miles and many time zones away.
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