Public, Personal, or Corporate: Finance Career Options Available to You Now
Because most businesses know the value in mindfully managing their assets, there are always careers for financial planners, analysts, managers, and executives
There’s a saying that the best things in life are free, but then, for the most part, money is also what helps keep the different gears turning in the world we live in. How do companies choose what to invest or spend on? How do individuals and families secure their financial futures? These are but a few of the essential questions in finance, the three key categories of which are public, personal, and corporate.
As companies, organizations, and personal investors understand the value of mindfully managing their assets, there will always be meaningful job opportunities for financial planners, analysts, managers, and executives, as the latter’s guidance based on their experience and expertise can pave the way for a fruitful financial future for the former.
Although entry requirements in finance are often stringent (like a related Bachelor’s degree for one) and working life is very demanding, a career in the industry can be rewarding. Apart from being lucrative, jobs in finance also offer a range of roles and specializations and tend to include mandatory study towards these industry-specific qualifications. So this means being in a vital industry, as well as having new opportunities emerge as you go along and gain more skills and experience.
The following are such opportunities, ranging from entry and associate roles to those at the executive level.
While not always the most appealing job in finance, serving as a bank teller is an effective way to get into the industry. Experience is often not necessary when applying for bank teller opportunities, and widely recognized financial institutions typically provide training for tellers who they employ.
Bank teller is also a role that is decidedly less stressful than others in the industry, as it is typically fulfilled within banking days/ hours only, making ideal for those who not only want to work industry, but also be afforded the time continue their financial education via training courses, online programs, and even Master’s degrees.
Fulfilling an assistant role is also an effective way to enter the finance industry, although it must be kept in mind that some of these have particular requirements. These include Accounting Assistant jobs, which expectedly have a minimum requirement of a degree in accounting, although, in other companies, a license in accounting may also be needed.
On the other hand, some companies may employ interns who happen to be working on their accounting degree or are just preparing to take the board exam. Either way, working as an Accounting Assistant is an opportunity to make real-world applications of accounting principles, but not take on the brunt of a company or client’s accounting needs and still have the opportunity to learn by experience and also be mentored, and work one’s way up to higher accounting role.
Similar to hiring and recruitment, financial processes are essential in just about every business, all but ensuring that finance professionals have career opportunities everywhere. Among these that are typically within almost every industry are billing and collections. While not the most glamorous of finance roles, Billing and Collection staff are irreplaceable in business operations.
Among their responsibilities are the proper and orderly filing of documents, retrieval of these when needed in the reconciliation of accounts, and the filing of documents in accordance with ISO requirements and standards. Requirements for fulfilling Billing and Collection roles vary between companies, although many prefer professionals with accounting degrees.
Financial Analysts are typically tasked with researching stocks, bonds, companies, and industries in an effort to assist investors and corporate finance officers with mergers, acquisitions, and stock/bond offerings, as well as corporate expansions and restructuring. While one can capitalize on their finance education to dissect financial statements and other financial data, this isn’t always limited to accounting or the like. Those with degrees in economics, statistics, and management, along with many others, may also apply.
Through extensive training and continued experience, one can eventually develop the skills to build financial models and conduct complex quantitative analyses, and even produce reports detailing financial findings with analysis worth presenting to executives, colleagues, and even business media.
Another financial service that will remain in constant demand, be it from companies or individuals, are those associated with taxation. With local tax laws continuously subject to change, the need to comply and ensure the legal financial health of a person or organization all but ensures that there is a career to be had with taxes.
In order to work with taxes, a bachelor’s degree in accountancy is required (or in some cases, just accountant skills. In order to advance to a manager or supervisory role, however, a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) license is often necessary— although some companies offer the opportunity for employees to earn one while on the job.
Thanks to the increased accessibility brought about by the continued advances in technology, more individuals have gone about making investments and handling their finances online. As a result, the market has also expanded and changed, making financial management careers more extensive than ever, and various companies have proceeded to hire an increasing number of managers to either handle their own assets or offer the service to their clients.
Along with tracking, measuring and reporting project costs, financial performance issues and risks, Finance Managers also often provide requested analysis to company heads, investor clientele, and other stakeholders. They also support management reporting processes and metrics by creating templates, job aids, materials, and other reports/analysis as required, making them vital in both the operational and financial processes of their companies.
Along with expanded roles in finance as a result of the continued advances in fin-tech and other related services, have been new roles and even business models. Like with any industry, managerial and supervisory roles have always existed in finance, and now can be applied even in the early stages of one’s career as some of these jobs are relatively new.
Among these is Head of Payments roles, which in traditional business or financial institution, may take time to qualify for. However, in fin-tech, e-commerce, and other online companies, these can be filled by young, but still tech-savvy, finance professionals. Primarily responsible for the planning and support the integration and growth of payment products and platform capabilities, a Head of Payments is required to have an education in finance, but more importantly, training and experience in modern applications and technologies.
Eventually, there are also opportunities to fill higher executive roles in finance, such as that of Director, or even VP or Country Manager. Of course, qualifying for these is also dependent on the nature of the business. Some may not in the finance industry, and more likely need executives to helm their finance department or team, while others might have finance as their business, and are looking for people to lead an entire company or office.
Roles this high up often involve owning any and all of the financial aspects of the company and making sure the reporting, accounting process, and related deliverables are done comprehensively, on-time, and of the utmost quality. With that, an extensive amount of financial experience and expertise is required, as well as leadership and people management skills, along with proficiency in related financial tools and technologies.
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