How To Get Recruited To Work in Finance

How To Get Recruited To Work in Finance main image

As uncomfortable as it might make you feel, money really does make the world go around.

Our lives are often influenced by what happens within the financial world, whether directly or indirectly, so it’s not surprising so many graduates decide they want to be more involved by working within the finance industry.

According to the United States Department of Labor’s Bureau of Labor Statistics, roles in the finance industry are expected to grow by 10 percent by 2026. This growth is faster than the average for all occupations, adding about 773,800 new jobs.

A growing economy, globalization, and a complex tax and regulatory environment are expected to continue to lead to strong demand for employees in the finance sector.

But before you make a name for yourself in the finance world, you need to get recruited. 

How financial recruitment differs

The recruitment industry faces different demands dependent on individual sectors. As the financial market is constantly evolving, companies need to surreptitiously hire employees with clearly-defined skills in accordance with stringent regulations.

Some of the requirements in financial recruitment include:

  • Financial employees must be vetted according to stringent guidelines
  • Rigid regulations can make it hard for firms to recruit top talent
  • Market drives the demand for specialist and clearly-defined skills 

Find out how Barclays recruiters find the best MBA students here.

The interview

You've made it to the interview stage, and now it’s time for you to turn your prospective employee status into a job offer.

When the interview comes to an end, it’s important to show finance recruiters how you stand out from the crowd.

  • Show you’re an attractive candidate

During your interview, it won’t go amiss letting the interviewer know you’re in demand. Show the interviewer you understand the company’s strategic terrain and are able to provide insight and understanding of their competitors’ plans and how to react accordingly.

  • Demonstrate forward-thinking ability

Ideal candidates can show they’re already thinking about how they will benefit the hiring company, not just what the company will do for the employee.

Don’t center the entire interview around yourself, employers will really appreciate if you ask what you could bring to the business.

Hard skills for finance professionals

Credible financial qualifications and certifications

To charter a successful career in finance, you’ll need a relevant educational background as it demonstrates to employers you have taken appropriate training and courses.

Highlight your degrees and certifications early in your resume, as it’s often the first thing recruiters look for. It may be worth adding your credentials next to your name at the top of your resume.

Discover the top 10 MBA programs for a career in finance here.

Financial reporting

When creating budgets, issuing stock and conducting audits, your financial reporting needs to be as accurate and detailed as possible.

Employers are on the lookout for trustworthy candidates who can compile reports with ease and precision.

If you have this experience, be sure to show an example when you used financial reporting to drive a positive business in a previous role. Your resume could say something like this:

“Compiled and analyzed financial reports, finding actionable data trends which resulted in a 35 percent growth for a client”

Management experience

Although not always a necessity, management experience is very attractive to financial firms. If you’re able to demonstrate to recruiters and employers you can evolve into a leadership role down the road, you’ll be sure to snatch up a spot.

Demonstrate how you’ve managed people in a past role. It could be via an organization you’re a part of or through volunteering or a position in another industry.

Highlight it on your resume like this:  

“Managed a large investment portfolio for Fortune 500 companies” or “Oversaw and directed budgeting team in executing methods to increase our profit margins”

Flipping the table

It’s not just about you attracting the attention of recruiters, always be aware of what you’re looking for from recruiters to help you land the finance job of your dreams.

How do you distinguish the best from the rest? There are several things to look for and ask of recruiters before you truly get started.

  • Find recruiters with strong client relationships
  • Work with recruiters who always get consent to submit your resume to a company
  • Try to associate yourself with a recruitment firm that is brutally honest (no smoke-blowing thank you)
  • Seek out recruiters who specialize or who have worked in financial services themselves
Niamh Ollerton, Deputy Head of Content at QS
Written by Niamh Ollerton

Niamh is Deputy Head of Content at QS (TopMBA.com; topuniversities.com), creating and editing content for an international student audience. Having gained her journalism qualification at the Press Association, London and since written for different international publications, she's now enjoying telling the stories of students, alumni, faculty, entrepreneurs and organizations from across the globe.  

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