Financial services are the firms and professionals that manage money and investments for businesses, individuals, government agencies and nonprofits. They also provide loans, credit and insurance. Typically, when you think of financial services, you’re likely to picture banking, stock brokers and mortgage lenders. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg. This broad industry actually encompasses a myriad of other areas, including insurance companies, venture capital providers, Wall Street and much more.
A successful career in financial services can be rewarding, but it isn’t easy to break into. Many entry-level positions are reserved for candidates with strong networking connections, and even then, competition is fierce. One way to increase your chances of landing a position is to start at an internship. This will allow you to gain hands-on experience and earn a paycheck while you learn the industry. Internships can also help you decide if the field is right for you, or if you need to look elsewhere.
Another benefit of working in the financial services industry is job security. This is because the field is so in-demand and relies on a large number of employees. As a result, there is little to no turnover in the workforce.
In addition, people in financial services are generally quite happy with their jobs. They rank high on satisfaction surveys, with an average score of 9.6 to 10. One downside is that many roles require travel. Since financial services are global organizations, a company may send its employees across the country or globe for business purposes.
One of the biggest challenges for the industry is staying ahead of cyber threats. As hackers become more sophisticated, they are able to breach systems that used to be impenetrable. This is why financial firms must constantly invest in monitoring, backup and disaster recovery solutions.
Finally, a successful career in financial services requires a variety of hard and soft skills. Math and data analysis are essential, as is the ability to work well in a team. This is because many jobs in this sector require the input of others, whether it’s a client or a coworker. The ability to listen and respond with tact are also important, especially when dealing with clients who are nervous about their finances.