A career in finance is one that is highly sort after and as such it is important that you are able to set yourself apart from the crowd. Below you will find our top tips for helping you stay one step ahead of the competition.
From our research we have discovered that employers within the financial industry are looking for candidates who’ve mastered “soft skills”. What are soft skills you say? Soft skills mean simply having the capability to communicate well and translate industry jargon – something that a financial services course will help you achieve (or see our Top 20 Financial Lingo post).
It goes without saying really… the more contacts you have within the finance industry the easier it will be for you when it comes to getting a job. As specialist jobs are no longer advertised via traditional methods, i.e. a newspapers like back in the olden days, sometimes it can be difficult to find that dream job. One of the best way to locate them is through networking. Not only will networking help you land a job but will hopefully mean your first job is in an industry you love and includes the responsibilities you want. We highly recommend that you attend industry related events, join industry organisations and also frequently check social media – LinkedIn is quickly becoming one of the top places to connect with organisations.
Obtain professional qualifications
Many employers nowadays are looking for graduates not only with a high grade but who have more to show for themselves. A degree is no longer enough – even if you get a first class honours! A professional qualifications could be the answer. Having a professional qualification as well as your degree under your belt will make you a more attractive candidate to an employer. Not only that, but many of the higher level finance jobs actually require professional qualifications or industry recognised accreditations.
Modules within the Financial Services degree taught at CU include units based on the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) Advanced Diploma in Financial Planning and the Chartered Management Institute (CMI) Level 5 Certificate in Management and Leadership. Upon successful completion of these elements you’ll have the opportunity to take the examinations to complete these professional qualifications.
Having work experience in the finance industry could be the difference between you and other candidates. We highly recommend that you try and obtain work experience even if it is for a short period of time. Having work experience not only allows you to have a feel and understanding for the finance industry but shows employers that you are ready to work.
Gain soft skills
Lastly we come back to those good old soft skills as mentioned previously. These are skills that you might not necessarily gain from your degree or even from studying. High level finance jobs will require you to have good communication skills along with leadership skills. These skills might be gained from a part-time job in a customer facing position or from everyday life – either way they are something you must constantly be developing. Look for opportunities to develop and enhance your speaking and presentation skills at all cost even if this means speaking up in class!
If you’re looking to enter the finance industry obtaining an appropriate qualification could be vital to your success. For more information check out the Financial Services degree at CU Coventry, CU Scarborough or CU London.