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Lead Associate - Investment consulting team

Location: Reigate
Company: WTW
Direct Employers
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Summary of Role
We are looking for insightful, adaptable and motivated analysts to join our investment consulting team within our London or Reigate office with a special focus on providing advice on Liability Driven Investment (LDI). We are a very close, diverse, collaborative team, working seamlessly with colleagues across the UK.
We aim to empower institutional investors to achieve their specific objectives by delivering outstanding investment advice and solutions, based on a strong foundation of research, analysis, innovation and trust. As a Lead Associate, you will be supporting client leads with the preparation and delivery of this advice. You will work primarily with a variety of UK Defined Benefit and Defined Contribution pension schemes covering a range of asset sizes (£50m to £5bn+), sectors and industries (including many household names).
The role is both analytical and client facing - you will be involved in overseeing the preparation of detailed modelling which helps us arrive at the proposed investment solutions and will also be discussing our ideas and advice to clients. This includes analysing pension scheme liabilities in order to assist our clients in designing, modelling, and implementing Liability Driven Investment and other derivative-based investment solutions, as well as developing new market-leading ideas within LDI. Building relationships with key stakeholders internally and with clients and third parties is a key aspect of the role.
Some experience of UK pension fund liabilities or investment markets will be helpful to the role. However, you will receive training and on-the-job coaching and support to help you apply your relevant experience to our business and develop into a client lead of the future.
The role opportunity allows for flexibility in your working arrangements and we would be happy to discuss this with you further.
The Role
You will be joining our LDI & Structured Products team within our wider client consulting team that represents an important part of the Global Investment business of WTW. Many of our clients are UK Defined Benefit pension schemes, including some of the largest schemes in the UK, although you may also work with DC schemes, sovereign wealth funds and charities.
The core of our work involves:
1) helping our clients determine their mission, beliefs and investment strategy, in particular in addressing hedging needs;
2) designing and implementing 'best in class' investment portfolios and ideas to achieve their objectives.
3) understanding pension scheme liabilities in order to help our clients and their LDI managers design, model and implement derivative-based investment solutions;
4) for DC schemes, helping our clients build and deliver innovative investment solutions to drive better value for members; and
5) assisting our clients to measure and monitor progress against their strategy.
Your role in the team will cover the follow elements.
Client / portfolio
- Preparation of analysis and client/internal reports covering investment strategy (including Journey Planning and hedging decisions, and default design for DC schemes), implementation (portfolio construction and manager selection), governance and monitoring.
- A particular focus on understanding the LDI and hedging needs of clients and developing solutions alongside their LDI managers
- Develop and build client relationships, including understanding their business environment
- Attend client meetings with the client lead to help deliver our advice, training and reporting of client performance - you will be supported to build up your relationship with the client over time
- You will have the opportunity to demonstrate project management skills as you build your knowledge of your clients and our processes
- Deliver high quality work within timescales and in line with expectations
- Support a collaborative and inclusive working environment
- Build strong relationships across your working network and collaborate effectively across all WTW specialist teams (e.g. research, reporting, retirement) to deliver in an efficient and timely manner
- Build relationships with external entities (eg investment banks and asset managers) in order to contribute to the development of client solutions
- Develop more junior colleagues, to either support you or provide services to other clients, through effective mentoring and coaching
- Develop an understanding of asset classes, cashflow liability data, and swaps and derivatives markets in order to assist more experienced team members in designing and critically evaluating asset and liability-based investment solutions
- Be an ambassador for 'Excellence' principles and risk management by ensuring high standards are applied and maintained across all work
- Engage in continuous professional development to enhance technical investment knowledge
- You will be supported to study for professional qualifications
The Requirements
- We would expect individuals at this level to have some relevant industry experience
- Knowledge and understanding of UK DB pension liabilities and/or relevant asset classes (particularly those used to manage interest rate and inflation risks) is helpful but not essential, however we would expect a curiosity for Investment and enthusiasm to build your existing knowledge
- We would expect individuals to be numerate and comfortable working in an analytical and technical field
- Ability and desire to build relationships and adapt your communication skills to the needs of different clients and stakeholders
- Project management skills including the ability to work successfully in cross-discipline teams to ensure successful delivery of projects and to build strong networks
- Progress towards a relevant qualification, such as CFA or Actuarial is preferred
Equal Opportunity Employer
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