EPF to keep staff count, fill key positions

by SHAHEERA AZNAM SHAH & ALIFAH ZAINUDDIN / pic by MUHD AMIN NAHARUL

THE Employees Provident Fund (EPF) will maintain its current workforce although the overall financial-related sector pushes ahead to trim headcount to manage cost and drive customers to transact online.

The country’s largest pension fund has delivered strong returns annually and is branded as among the best managed state-linked firms in the country.

The world’s seventh-largest pension fund based on assets under management (AUM) has also invested millions to provide services online. It has 14.53 million members as of October last year.

“Regarding your query about the EPF conducting a VSS (voluntary separation scheme) exercise: For your information, there is no such exercise happening within the company at the moment,” the EPF told The Malaysian Reserve in an email message.

The EPF paid RM47.31 billion last year as dividends, the largest by any fund in the country. It will become a RM1 trillion pension fund in less than two years.

Presently, the EPF manages about RM800 billion AUM, making it the fourth-largest pension fund in Asia.

It is estimated the fund received about RM6 billion monthly from members and has to generate a substantial income to pay for every percentage point in dividends.

According to the EPF’s 2018 Annual Report, the pension fund has more than 5,000 employees working across four offices and 68 branches in the country.

In the last few years, the financial services sector had witnessed staff trimming as firms invest heavily on online services, making some positions redundant. According to figures, 1,800 people lost their jobs in the financial sector in 2018.

The EPF yesterday announced several changes to its senior management team, effective immediately.

The fund named Rohaya Mohammad Yusof, the pension’s head of private markets, as CIO. She replaced Datuk Mohamad Nasir Ab Latif who has stepped down as deputy CEO (investment) on Dec 31 last year.

The pension also announced the appointment of Nurhisham Hussein as its chief strategy officer which was previously held by its current CEO Tunku Alizakri Raja Muhammad Alias.

Rohaya joined the pension fund in 2008 as the head of corporate finance in the investment division before helming the capital markets division. Prior to serving the EPF, she was the executive VP of corporate investment banking at Maybank Investment Bank Bhd.

Nurhisham joined the EPF in 2014 as the head of the economics and capital markets department after serving Malaysian Rating Corp Bhd, Permodalan Nasional Bhd and Affin Bank Bhd.

In a statement, Tunku Alizakri said the EPF prioritises strong talent in its leadership progression, while mentioning that both appointments are internal promotions.

“Rest assured that we will continue to be steadfast in our role as a fund that is focused on making investments that go towards achieving long-term returns for our members’ futures,” he said.