Bank Of America Hoping Someone In HR Knows How To Pass A Stress Test

Otherwise Brian Moynihan may have to dust off that C.V.
Author:
Updated:
Original:

As many of you know, one of the areas that Bank of America has vast room for improvement is in the passing of the Federal Reserve's annual stress test. No major bank has failed as many times as the one in Charlotte and this year it really needs to get it right on the first try, or Brian Moynihan may be out of a job. So, with the stakes higher than ever, Moynihan and Co decided a radical paradigm shift was in order: rather than give the assignment to an employee whose expertise made him or her an obvious choice for the job, why not give the gig to someone in HR?

Ms. Smith, 49 years old, this year is leading Bank of America’s stress-test submission, in which the firm’s credibility with regulators, and possibly Chief Executive Officer Brian Moynihan’s job, is on the line...Bank of America, the second-largest bank by assets in the U.S., has fumbled the exam three of the past five years, more than any other major U.S. bank. Last year, it was the only U.S. bank required to resubmit its test, and the firm subsequently said it spent $100 million to rework the plan...[Ms. Smith] was in some ways an unusual choice for a test that involves analyzing reams of technical data, given that she has spent the past two decades in human resources. Most of the executives running the test at other large banks come from risk or finance functions.

If the experiment works out though, we can presumably expect more of these switcheroo hiring moves. At first blush, tasking BofA's most socially awkward quant with handling a highly sensitive, internal sexual harassment case might seem strange but it also might prove GENIUS.

The Woman With the Most Stressful Job in Banking [WSJ]

Related

Bank Of America Hoping To Fire Thousands Of Employees In Record Time

Remember Project New BAC, i.e. Bank of America's plan to transform itself from Ken Lewis's house of fun, where everyone went home happy but the concept of making money was less of a focus than keeping the good times coming, to an institution that did things like post profits? The bank has said previously that PNBAC "will result in $8 billion in annual savings by 2015—$5 billion from the first phase and $3 billion from a second phase" and while it stands by those figures and remains committed to cutting as many employees as it takes, some people would like them to be a bit snappier about it. Bank of America is accelerating a broad cost-cutting plan and has set a target of shedding 16,000 jobs by year's end—cuts that would see the company relinquish its title as U.S. banking's largest employer. The proposed year-end total of 260,000 would be the lowest count since 2008 and likely give Bank of America a smaller workforce than JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, or Wells Fargo...Chief Executive Brian Moynihan is trying to speed the company's transformation into a smaller and more efficient operation as he tries to persuade investors that expenses can be adjusted to compensate for revenue lost to new regulations, an uneven economy and shaky markets. Since becoming CEO in 2010, he has shifted away from a nationwide expansion strategy embraced by his predecessors Hugh L. McColl Jr. and Kenneth D. Lewis, and shed many of the businesses that he considers to be nonessential...Hitting the new staffing target would fulfill a year early Mr. Moynihan's pledge to slash the bank's workforce by approximately 30,000. "If they want to make any headway toward improving profitability," said Sterne Agee & Leach Inc. senior banking analyst Todd Hagerman, "they need to accelerate the timeline." Bank Of America Ramps Up Job Cuts [WSJ]