The past 20 years have been a time of great expansion and diversification for the banking and financial service industry. But working in banking can be a tough gig given the industry’s ruthless reputation. Here are some myths we want to bust and show that the banking industry can be a great launching pad for one’s career:
You need to have a degree in finance
Not all aspects of banking are numbers-based, so you don't necessarily need a maths or finance degree to work in the industry. Much of finance consists of breaking down complex subjects and communicating that information to others. With any degree, you have the ability to transfer those skills to a broad number of roles and settings depending on your strengths and career interests. Keep in mind that many professionals change their jobs and goals over the course of their careers as their needs and desires change.
It’s a cutthroat industry The banking world is notorious for the high level of difficulty when it comes to securing a position. However, as with all industries, there are bound to be challenges and competition. Whilst there is pressure, it’s not as tough as you might expect. Banks come with a wealth of resources, and you will be given opportunities to work in teams and build relationships. Working in banking is often about being a team player, your ability to multitask and juggle lots of different things at once. If you are new in the industry, you could also get out there and find mentors who can give you career advice and guidance.
Your tech career can only succeed at a global tech firm
If you have sought-after technical skills, then you’ll have a leg up when you throw your hat into the ring for a banking job – and not just for back-office roles. From data scientists with experience working with predictive analytics and machine learning to developers familiar with open source technologies, there are plenty of front-office jobs right now that require technological expertise, many of which are on banks high radar to fill.
Banks will only hire you if you have on-the-job experience
If you are looking to apply to another department or are seeking a career change, do not write-off the banking industry with the preconception that you do not have the appropriate experience. On top of demonstrating your transferable skills from your previous role, keep in mind that banks also look for people who are passionate team players with all of the necessary ‘soft skills’. There are training programs at banks where you can end up with a skill set that you couldn’t acquire anywhere else, and that is relevant for multiple industries and careers.
Banking is completely male-dominated Nearly every major name in banking has established initiatives in place to help ensure and maintain a diverse and inclusive environment. It's a fact that the industry has historically been male-dominated, but things have changed drastically over the years and there's a huge push across the industry to focus on recruiting and retaining more women to ensure continued and increased innovation and diversity of thought.