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Extraordinary times call for innovative measures. The Hong Kong Institute of Bankers (HKIB) is helping its army of local banking and financial professionals continue their professional development during these times of remote learning with the launch of its new Flex learning initiative.

Launched in mid-February, the new learning programme is a virtual classroom training experience that provides banking practitioners with a flexible learning platform, allowing them to continue their scheduled training in an interactive and effective way during the ongoing COVID-19 outbreak.


To date, more than 1200 banking pros in Hong Kong and 150 in Macau have participated in the HKIB courses online – a participation rate of 82% and 100% respectively.

“The COVID-19 pandemic has caused a great shift in working and learning behaviour. We are glad to see how adaptive to change local banking practitioners in Hong Kong and Macau are, as reflected in the popularity of our Flex learning programmes,” said Carrie Leung, CEO of the HKIB.

“Capacity building is critical in forming a strong and resilient banking system that can weather escalating headwinds and, more importantly, bounce back effectively from crisis. This pandemic has brought unplanned yet highly valuable time for banking professionals to focus on developing their knowledge,” she added.

The coronavirus pandemic has become a catalyst for many banks to accelerate their digital transformation and to examine the need to future-proof their teams.

Technological ability in the banking sector is considered the area facing the largest skills shortage over the next five years – according to the HKIB’s latest talent development survey – with 70% of respondents believing banks need to upskill or reskill their existing employees to fill skills gaps.