Finance experts help their clients make significant purchases, organize their spending, and spot trends by working with their finances and budgets. Most positions in this industry demand that people be math-savvy and committed to giving customers high-quality, reliable service. Knowing the different careers you can pursue in finance is beneficial whether you’re looking to launch a career or locate a new position. This article describes 20 financial careers and positions you could be interested in, along with the typical salaries and job descriptions for each.
20 financial positions to take into consideration
This list of financial jobs may assist you launch your career in finance or provide you with a target for improving your current level of financial expertise:
1. A financial analyst
National average yearly salary: $67,798
Primary responsibilities: To assist their clients in making wiser financial decisions, financial analysts are experienced in investigating and forecasting financial developments and patterns. A lot of financial analysts analyze past performance records of businesses to forecast future performance, including the potential growth of current investments and if the company is on track to break even or lose money. These specialists play a crucial role in the running of many firms since the data they examine enables a business to alter its tactics for improved results.
National average yearly wage: $95,213
Primary responsibilities: A controller is a financial expert who oversees an organization’s accounting processes. These senior workers collaborate with accounting teams and carry out regular duties such as organizing projects and establishing goals for accountants, collecting financial information and obtaining authorizations to review it, and producing financial statements to be given to accountants on their team. The controller for an organization manages other members of the accounting department as well as potential partners to enhance the overall financial health of their workplace.
National average yearly wage: $72,715
Primary responsibilities: An underwriter investigates the financial and financial standing of a loan or insurance applicant to decide whether it would be wise to grant the applicant a loan. To make sure a consumer can make payments on a loan or insurance, underwriters gather information about their prior financial actions, including credit history and job history, as well as their current income, assets, and employment. Lenders frequently have more faith in borrowers when their loan request is evaluated by an underwriter because they respect the job that an underwriter conducts to confirm the financial position.
4. A financial planner
National average yearly salary: $69,723
Primary responsibilities: A financial planner assists their clients in improving their financial decisions by offering advice and creating plans for them. This position’s duties include examining a client’s financial background, including current savings and income, and then creating budgets, payment schedules, and suggestions for ways to improve the client’s usable funds through investments. Financial planners can collaborate with people as private planners or with businesses in a finance division, where they can employ information from different sorts of analysts to aid in decision-making.
National average yearly salary: $79,124
Primary responsibilities: Typically, a trader collaborates with customers to trade, which entails purchasing and selling stock in businesses that are profitable for both the trader and the client. Stock market analysts can estimate the worth of a company’s stocks, identify patterns using trading tools and algorithms, and select the most profitable moments to buy and trade assets. Professional traders usually collaborate with other analysts and stock experts at stock exchanges, while the development of digital trading frequently allows them to work from locations other than the offices of their companies.
6. Finance supervisor
National average yearly wage: $96,770
Primary responsibilities: A finance manager oversees a company’s financial activities, including investments and budgeting. The main responsibilities of this position include working with every department to identify financial possibilities and difficulties, reviewing financial reports in various departments, and developing strategies to increase revenue and improve cash flow. Finance managers monitor the department’s operations and coach financial staff to assist them to excel in their positions, which is also advantageous to the business for which they work.
7. Chief financial officer
National average yearly wage: $127,443
Primary responsibilities: The organization’s chief financial officer, or CFO, is responsible for overseeing all facets of its finances, including obtaining data on accounting, investment, revenues, and operating expenses. These executive-level managers frequently monitor cash flow and look into possibilities and difficulties to find ways to enhance operations since they have a thorough awareness of how each component of the financial health of an organization influences its entire performance. One of the organization’s highest-level employees, the CFO collaborates closely with the chief executive officer (CEO) of their place of business.
8. A budget analyst
National average yearly salary: $79,604
Primary responsibilities: To develop more useful budgets and enhance available funds, a budget analyst examines the financial situation and existing expenses of their customer. They typically collaborate with businesses, keeping tabs on how much is spent on particular products, how much is consistently received, and how best to spend money to produce better results like higher profits. Budget analysts are essential to having satisfactory financial standing for both individuals and businesses since they can assist their customers in saving money by prioritizing expenditures.
9. Portfolio manager
National average yearly wage: $83,929
Primary responsibilities: A portfolio manager assists clients in investing comprehension and increases the returns on their investment holdings. To identify investments that should go in the portfolio of a client that can make money under those risk and time limits, portfolio managers frequently meet with clients to understand how much risk they are satisfied with and the length of time they want to hold their investments. To strengthen the client’s investments and increase the amount of money they get when they sell their portfolio, portfolio managers may then acquire and sell various shares.
National average yearly salary: $115,056
Primary responsibilities: An actuary advises customers on a variety of financial hazards and how to reduce their impact or optimize outcomes. Actuaries frequently do research and evaluate data about financial risks on behalf of customers like insurance firms. They may gather information about a company’s historical practices and the typical results of strategies, analyze that information, and then develop new plans that support their clients’ success while minimizing risks and making wise judgments. These individuals frequently possess actuarial science expertise, which enables them to examine data more quickly to foresee hazards and comprehend viable financial problem solutions.
National average yearly wage: $58,278
Primary responsibilities: A person or company’s financial records and paperwork are examined by an auditor to see if they are accurate and compliant with financial rules and regulations. They may be tasked with gathering and keeping track of financial records, including tax returns, examining those records for errors or anomalies, and determining whether a person or company is conducting business by financial standards. Following an audit, the auditor usually notifies the person or business under review and provides a report outlining the financial mistakes they discovered.
12. A quantitative analyst
National average yearly wage: $127,324
Primary responsibilities: A quantitative analyst helps firms make more informed financial choices by analyzing quantitative data, or data that can be measured, using their statistical and analytical expertise. Quantitative analysts, commonly known as quants, use arithmetic, statistics, and data about the financial state of a business, such as investing and material costs, to create complicated strategies. Quants typically need to be detail-oriented, committed to learning about new ways of analysis, and open to evaluating data frequently to develop these strategies that efficiently enhance a company.
National average yearly wage: $56,059
Primary responsibilities: An accountant assists clients, who may be people or corporations, in managing their finances and adhering to the law. Numerous accountants handle tasks like compiling a client’s financial data over time to produce a report on their expenditure and savings patterns, making sure every financial deal in a business adheres to industry regulations, and preparing and filing tax returns. A firm’s accounting division or accounting companies are two places where accountants can work with clients directly.
National average yearly wage: $38,347
Primary responsibilities: A banker assists customers in managing their savings and checking accounts by drawing on their understanding of financial and customer service techniques. Bankers may inform consumers about particular services their bank provides, such as credit cards and loans, and they may make deposits or withdrawals of money on their behalf. Bankers, often known as bank tellers, engage closely with clients to build trusting relationships that enable clients to ask essential inquiries regarding their bank accounts and loans.
15. Investment banker
National average yearly salary: $66,885
Primary responsibilities: An investment banker guides their clients, who are typically organizations, on the best investments to make to raise capital for operating costs. Investment bankers can raise money by making investments for their customer’s long-term financial stability, among other methods, by selling equities and bonds to investors, buying or selling other businesses, and seeking alternative sources of funding. Most investment bankers have in-depth knowledge of the sector in which they operate and the worth of their firm, enabling them to make the best investment decisions.
16. Credit analyst
National average yearly wage: $53,277
Primary responsibilities: A credit analyst evaluates loan applicants’ eligibility and decides whether to approve or reject their loan requests based on their credit scores and repayment histories. They frequently work for lenders to research a person’s or business’s credit history, and check to see if prior loans were responsibly handled, whether payments were paid on time, and how much money was available. Credit analysts’ choices enable their companies to approve loans for borrowers who are more likely to fulfill their payments on time and keep good credit.
17. A bookkeeper
National average yearly wage: $37,832
Primary responsibilities: A bookkeeper keeps track of transactions to assist a company know the amount of money it makes (which is referred to as a credit) and spends (also referred to as a debit). To compile crucial financial papers and maintain complete documentation of their employer’s debits and credits, including reconciling ledgers and monitoring client invoices, bookkeepers frequently collaborate with accountants. This entry-level position is frequently a wonderful place to start if you want to work in other financial fields, like accounting.
18. An insurance broker
National average yearly salary: $67,478
Primary responsibilities: Typically, an insurance broker assists customers in establishing an insurance plan while working for an insurance provider. Meeting and recruiting new clients, deciding their eligibility for specific insurance policies and premiums, and making sure they complete all forms and contracts correctly are all duties of this position. Excellent customer service abilities help insurance brokers draw in new customers, keep existing ones, and upsell them on extra products.
19. Bank teller
National average hourly wage: $13
Primary responsibilities: Bank tellers provide residents with personal banking assistance at retail banks and credit unions. They respond to inquiries about banking and carry out desired transactions. They play a customer-focused role and usually provide the public with their first impression of their bank.
20. Financial examiner
National average yearly wage: $66,442
Primary responsibilities: Financial examiners are frequently, but not perpetually, hired by the federal government. They could work for financial institutions as well. They monitor whether banks are following the law and maintaining the necessary cash reserves.
How to get a financial job
Getting a financial job can be a highly competitive process, but there are several steps you can take to increase your chances of success:
Identify the type of financial job you want
There are different types of financial jobs, such as financial analyst, accountant, investment banker, financial planner, and more. It’s important to have a clear idea of what type of job you want to pursue.
Get the right education
Many financial jobs require at least a bachelor’s degree in a related field such as finance, accounting, or economics. Some roles may require a higher degree or specific certifications.
Build your network
Building a strong professional network is crucial in the finance industry. Attend industry events, join professional organizations, and network with people in the field to increase your chances of finding job opportunities.
Gain relevant experience
Internships or entry-level positions in the finance industry can help you gain relevant experience and develop the necessary skills for higher-level positions. You may also consider taking on freelance or consulting work to build your portfolio.
Tailor your resume and cover letter
Make sure your resume and cover letter are tailored to the specific job you’re applying for. Highlight relevant skills and experience that make you a strong fit for the role.
Prepare for interviews
Prepare for interviews by researching the company and the role, and practicing responses to common interview questions. Be prepared to discuss your relevant experience and demonstrate your knowledge of the industry.
Employers of financial jobs
Employers of financial jobs can vary depending on the specific industry or field within finance. Some common employers of financial jobs include:
- Banks: Banks offer a wide range of financial jobs such as loan officers, financial advisors, investment bankers, credit analysts, and tellers.
- Insurance companies: Insurance companies hire professionals for roles such as underwriters, claims adjusters, actuaries, and risk management analysts.
- Investment firms: Investment firms hire financial analysts, portfolio managers, traders, and investment bankers.
- Accounting firms: Accounting firms hire certified public accountants (CPAs), auditors, tax professionals, and financial consultants.
- Government agencies: Government agencies such as the Federal Reserve, the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), and the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) hire professionals for a variety of financial roles.
- Corporations: Large corporations hire finance professionals for roles such as financial analysts, budget analysts, and treasury analysts.
- Consulting firms: Consulting firms offer financial consulting services to a wide range of clients, including businesses and government agencies.
These are just a few examples of the many employers of financial jobs. The specific job market and available opportunities can vary by region and industry.
The job outlook for financial jobs
The job outlook for financial jobs varies depending on the specific occupation within the industry. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the overall employment of business and financial occupations is projected to grow 5% from 2029 to 2029, which is faster than the average for all occupations.
Some financial occupations, such as financial analysts and personal financial advisors, are projected to have faster-than-average job growth due to an aging population that will need financial planning services. However, other financial occupations, such as loan officers and financial examiners, are projected to have slower-than-average job growth due to increasing automation and a shift toward online banking.
Overall, the job outlook for financial jobs is largely dependent on the broader economic conditions and changes in technology and industry trends. Individuals pursuing financial jobs need to stay current with industry developments and continue developing their skills to remain competitive in the job market.
The typical work environment for financial jobs
The work environment for financial jobs can vary widely depending on the specific occupation and employer. Some financial jobs, such as investment bankers and traders, may work long hours in fast-paced, high-pressure environments. Other financial jobs, such as accounting and financial analysis, may have more traditional work hours and a more structured work environment.
Many financial jobs are office-based and require working with a computer and other specialized software tools. Collaboration and teamwork are often important aspects of financial jobs, as individuals may need to work with colleagues in different departments or with clients to achieve their goals.
Some financial jobs may require travel, such as financial advisors who need to meet with clients or auditors who need to visit different company locations. Some financial jobs, such as customer service representatives for banks or financial institutions, may require working with customers directly in a retail or call center environment.
Overall, the work environment for financial jobs can vary widely depending on the specific occupation and employer, but many require a high degree of attention to detail, strong analytical skills, and the ability to work collaboratively with others.
Career advancements and work experience needed for financial jobs
Career advancement and work experience requirements for financial jobs vary depending on the specific role and employer. However, most financial jobs require a strong educational background in finance, accounting, economics, or a related field. A bachelor’s degree is usually the minimum educational requirement, while many roles require a master’s degree or higher.
In terms of work experience, entry-level financial jobs may require little to no experience, while more senior roles typically require several years of experience in a related field. Many financial firms also offer training and development programs to help employees develop their skills and advance their careers.
For those interested in pursuing a career in finance, gaining relevant work experience through internships, part-time jobs, or volunteer work can be beneficial. Additionally, pursuing professional certifications such as the Certified Financial Planner (CFP) or Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) can also enhance career opportunities and advancement potential.
In conclusion, financial jobs are highly sought-after and competitive, but they can be highly rewarding and lucrative for those who are passionate about finance and have the necessary skills and qualifications. There are a variety of different financial jobs available, ranging from entry-level positions to executive roles, and the job outlook for the industry as a whole is positive. As with any career, it is important to gain experience and continuously develop your skills to advance and succeed in the field. With dedication and hard work, a career in finance can offer numerous opportunities for growth and success.
Frequently Asked Questions about Financial Jobs
- What types of financial jobs are available?
There are a variety of financial jobs available, including financial analysts, investment bankers, financial advisors, accountants, auditors, and more. Each job has its specific requirements and duties, and the type of job that is right for you will depend on your skills, interests, and career goals.
- What qualifications are needed for financial jobs?
Most financial jobs require at least a bachelor’s degree in a related field, such as finance, accounting, economics, or business. Some positions may require additional certifications or licenses, such as a Certified Public Accountant (CPA) or a Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA).
- How can I gain experience in the financial industry?
One way to gain experience in the financial industry is to pursue internships or entry-level positions in finance. Networking with professionals in the industry and joining professional organizations can also help you build your skills and make valuable connections.
- What is the job outlook for financial jobs?
The job outlook for financial jobs varies by specific occupation, but overall, the industry is expected to see growth in the coming years. For example, the Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that employment of financial analysts will grow 5% from 2019 to 2029, faster than the average for all occupations.
- What are some skills that are important for success in financial jobs?
Some important skills for success in financial jobs include analytical thinking, attention to detail, strong communication skills, proficiency with financial software and technology, and the ability to work well under pressure. A strong understanding of financial concepts and regulations is also important in many financial jobs.