Problem-Solving as Personal Growth – Allen’s Story

Allen’s tells us about his career journey so far with Standard Chartered

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Where it all started

I’ve always been interested in food, travelling, and movies. Since working with Standard Chartered, I’ve found something else to be passionate about – finance!

After finishing my degree in Quantitative Finance, I applied for the International Graduate Programme under Risk & Conduct, Financial Crime and Compliance at Standard Chartered in Hong Kong. The bank is recognised as one of the biggest in Hong Kong and globally, so I was hoping that the programme could give me a more comprehensive picture of the banking industry.

I knew I liked the world of finance, but I didn’t understand the vastness of the industry. Yet…

Jumping in: the recruitment process 

After applying for the International Graduate Programme, I was invited to the second stage of the recruitment process. To my surprise, I found myself really enjoying the interview. It was interactive and a fun chance for me and the hiring managers to get to know each other. They explained the role and responsibilities within the company and introduced themselves and the broader team to me. The friendly interview process helped me understand the team I would be a part of and made me feel supported from the very beginning. 

The interview also included aptitude tests, a video interview, an interview with HR, and a business interview. There was a lot to talk about, but I had plenty of information ahead of time, so I felt prepared and relaxed heading in.  

My advice to anybody who wishes to apply for the internship programme: make the most of your university resources! They might put you in touch with someone working in the banking industry, which would help you understand things better before you apply. 

A dynamic approach to problem-solving 

Being an International Graduate under  Risk & Conduct, Financial Crime and Compliance, my work ensures that the bank satisfies regulatory expectations. It’s all about balancing the interests of different parties like customers, businesses, and regulators. To me, this work is fascinating!  

In Hong Kong, Standard Chartered focuses on delivering innovative and exciting solutions to retail clients. The bank has revamped all its ATMs, redesigned its apps, and is currently launching an online service. These developments help grow the relationship between the customers and the bank, and it’s a rewarding process to be involved with. 

I get to pick up various work, rotate between different teams, and work with many colleagues on ad-hoc tasks for a range of projects. This flexible working arrangement means I’ve picked up knowledge about various aspects of banking and invaluable research and analytical skills. 

Inclusive, supportive and open-minded 

When I think of Standard Chartered, I think of support. I always feel supported, no matter what team or project I’m working with. Collaboration and trust are also essential. Despite my relatively short time in the industry, I’ve been trusted from the start, encouraging me to contribute to the team even more.  

This was primarily thanks to my manager, who mentored and motivated me daily with their advice and attitude. They always found the time to listen to my ideas and reflect on them to find the best solution. 

What I also liked about Standard Chartered is the central philosophy: “do the right thing”. By supporting inclusion and celebrating diversity and open-mindedness. We enjoyed regular events like Pink Friday, an internal event to celebrate LGBTQ+ colleagues throughout the company. 

Being part of Standard Chartered helped me understand that my future holds many possibilities. Jumping into something new is scary, but it’s usually worthwhile in the end!