Finance / Roundups

Is Delaware losing bank jobs — or gaining them?

There's been some bad news, but overall, banks in Delaware are still major talent seekers. Here's what execs have to say about hiring tech workers.

Banks dot the skyline. (Photo by Flickr user Ryan Keene, used under a Creative Commons license)
Correction: WSFS's chief digital officer will oversee customer delivery strategy, not visual strategy. (6/17/19, 11:53 a.m.)

When Barclay’s announced last week that it was moving 500 jobs from Delaware to Whippany, New Jersey, even with the U.K.-based bank’s assurances that it remained invested in its Wilmington headquarters of nearly 20 years, it felt like gloomy news.

Just the sound of it — 500 jobs leaving Delaware — brings memories of the banking upheavals in Wilmington’s banking history. Downtown Wilmington was the land of MBNA (acquired by Bank of America in 2006) in the 1980s, and the Riverfront was virtually an ING campus in the 2000s.

Still, gloomy industry news isn’t necessarily the whole story: still found hundreds of bank industry jobs in Delaware (including 13 at Barclay’s) online.

“We are absolutely very actively hiring,” said Patrick Best, VP and manager of talent acquisition at WSFS, in an interview. “Not just in the market that we inherited through the [recent] acquisition of Beneficial Bank, but also the legacy market in the state of Delaware, so throughout our entire footprint we currently have 40 open positions on our website — and that’s just what’s posted.”

WSFS is currently in the process of hiring a chief digital officer, too, to oversee the bank’s customer delivery strategy over the next three years and beyond.

“Once we onboard that person, that will continue to create opportunities,” said Best. “I don’t see it slowing down.”

Capital One (which acquired ING in 2012) unveiled its fully renovated, Silicon Valley-inspired offices in Wilmington in April, with the hopes that the modern design would help draw more millennials to the city. Capital One has 72 Delaware positions currently posted.

JPMorgan Chase committed to hiring 1,800 people in Delaware positions between 2015 and 2019. “We always need good people,” said Mike Zbranak, site lead at JPMorgan Chase’s Delaware Technology Center (DTC), in a 2017 interview with “Financial services is a dynamic industry that continues to be powered by technology, and that requires a large talent pool.”

As part of its mass hiring project, JPMC held its own hiring events, including specialized events geared toward hiring women and increasing diversity. JPMC has 242 Delaware positions currently posted.

M&T Bank announced a hiring push in April, opening about 200 positions in its Wilmington Plaza location.

“We want M&T to be a compelling destination for talented, innovative, tech-savvy people,” said M&T Chief Information Officer Michael Wisler in a press release. “We’ve recently renovated our workspaces into more engaging, open and collaborative environments with the best technology, standing desks and comfortable lounges, giving people much more choice and control over where they work during the day. We’re also doing more to support our local colleges and universities, as well as the startup community, which help make our communities destinations for people seeking opportunity.”

For WSFS, tech roles are on the up and up.

“As we focus more specifically on technology, we’ve been actively hiring folks in technology roles,” said Best. “Anywhere from four to eight technology-related positions are posted at any given time at WSFS, which can range from in-house software developers, business system analysts, network and data engineers and folks supporting the help desk. For a bank our size — under 2,000 people — it’s a significant number of roles for us.”

Here’s some Delaware bank job numbers (with links to check out the positions further):

Companies: Capital One / JPMorgan Chase / Wilmington Trust

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