Returner stories at Lloyds

Lloyds Banking Group’s award-winning 'Returnship Programme' has been running for over six years. This 16 week paid returnship programme aims to support people through their transition and, all being well, lead to a permanent position. Here are some stories from those who returned to work with Lloyds Banking Group: 

Ruth It’s never too late to get back into banking

After 16 years away from the corporate world, Ruth won a place on our Returner Programme – and hasn’t looked back.

I joined LBG on the 2018 Returner’s Programme, spending the 16 weeks of the programme in Markets Operations, and then moving to LBCM Business Management in January 2019 where I focus on Customer Experience.

Back in the last century when men wore ties and those few women who were in the City wore shoulder pads, I worked as a Eurobond Dealer managing an FRN Investment Portfolio and trading Sterling and Aussie Dollar Bonds, Options and Futures. I then moved into Asset Management where I was Head of Dealing covering an extensive range of products and markets on a best execution basis.

After starting my family I returned to the City but after a couple of years decided that I wanted to spend more time with my daughter and made the tough decision to change my career to enable this to happen.

I qualified as a Montessori Nursery Teacher and then after further training, as a Montessori Primary Teacher. I became involved in the Montessori Schools Association (MSA), becoming Regional Chair of the East Anglia Region.  

When my daughter decided she too wanted to pursue a career in the city via an apprenticeship programme, I decided to reach out to some of my old contacts. One of these happened to work at Lloyds and told me about the Returner’s programme. On a whim I thought I would apply and the rest, as they say, is history!

I had been away from the corporate market for over 16 years and I never dreamt I would be back in the City, albeit in a very different guise to before. There has been plenty of support and some great training sessions for personal improvement that were invaluable, interesting and inspiring.  I was concerned about how much had changed in the lifetime I was away – especially technology – but I have  been fortunate to work with some amazing people who took the time to help me settle in and appreciated the transferable skills that I was bringing with me. 

I absolutely love it and I could never have done it without LBG and the Returner’s Programme.

Recruiters found me hard to place – but LGB were the perfect fit

Despite having a wealth of relevant experience, Marina Shilo’s career break meant she didn’t fit the typical candidate model, which led to her being overlooked – until she applied to LBG.

MarinaI joined the LBG, Commercial Banking in September 2018 as a Sustainability & Responsible Business manager in CB Engagement and Responsible Business team on the Returners Programme following a maternity career break. 

In my current role I support the LBG in driving colleagues and clients to build a net zero carbon future and tackle climate change – one of the biggest issues facing the world today. I am really proud that at LBG I am able to fully utilise my experience and education and contribute to finding solutions. Our purpose is Helping Britain Prosper and it is not only very inspiring but also very relevant to my day to day job at LBG.

I started my career in banking as a senior legal counsel and after 5 years of practicing law continued working as a Parliamentary Assistant to a Minister of Energy Efficiency where I was responsible for a strategic advice on financial benefits of carbon emissions trading. I also worked in capacity building/sustainable land management area at the United Nations Development Programme and later, at the International Mobile Satellite Organisation. Before my maternity career break, I advised governments on climate change policy in Toronto, Canada.

After the break I felt that coming back to the financial sector is the right thing for me, given how important are the investment decisions banks make every day for the future of the society and the planet.  However, my comeback was not straightforward as my CV with a career break didn’t fit the recruiters’ matrix for the City.

The fact that I have got two master degrees – an MSc in environmental change and management from the University of Oxford and a Master of Laws from the University of Manchester – made things even more complicated for trying to identify where I might fit.

Even though some other banks have programmes for people joining after a career break, only LBG has been able to recognise my rich international experience and value of a diversity and professional knowledge I could bring to the organisation.

I really enjoyed the Returners Programme which made my journey back to workplace as smooth as possible, swapping a school run and other 100% family caring routine for a demanding professional work.  Most importantly, LBG work and family life balance as well as agile work arrangements, allowing a mother of two and a sailing enthusiast– a sport I’ve felt in love with during my career break – to recommend LBG as the right place to be.