FinTech careers – and what you need to succeed 🔎
1. Software developer
FinTech companies looking to make new software need skilled developers to create and maintain it.
With the world turning to smartphones, there is also a huge demand for mobile app developers who can create something that rivals the competition.
Skills and knowledge needed to work as a Graduate Software Developer in FinTech
- Programming knowledge
- It goes without saying that programming knowledge is essential. And experience using languages like Java is highly sought after by FinTech companies who require app development and maintenance. (Top tip – it helps to have examples of your programming work that you can present to recruiters in the form of a portfolio!)
- AI and machine learning knowledge
- AI, automation, and machine learning are becoming increasingly important in the world of finance. Financial tasks can be extremely tedious. So, increasingly financial management apps and automated banking features are being released. They are becoming a huge point of focus for modern developers.
- Cyber security knowledge
- There has been a sharp increase in cyber attacks in the last few years – with finance often being the main motivation behind these attacks. For someone working in FinTech, cyber security knowledge is an essential part of the role. If you’re working as a software developer, knowledge of cyber security is needed to develop secure apps and software so that customer and company data is safe.
Those looking for graduate jobs as a Software Developer will likely need a Computer Science or Software Engineering degree, with additional experience in programming.
2. Finance Assistant
A Finance Assistant, (someone who can assist with accounting and bookkeeping) is a hugely important role within FinTech.
They will assist finance departments with managing and processing transactions, and troubleshoot accounting problems that arise.
Skills and knowledge needed to work in finance graduate jobs
- Analytical skills
- If you’re managing financial data, analytical skills are essential. You may be required to check that transactions and expenses inputted into bookkeeping software are accurate. An analytical eye will be needed to help you spot discrepancies and correct them accordingly.
- Finance knowledge
- Working in FinTech doesn’t necessarily mean that you need to be a financial whizz. In some roles, an aptitude for technology is more important. But, with roles that are primarily focused on the business side of finance, financial knowledge is a top priority.
- Knowledge of Excel or bookkeeping software
- For someone who is heavily involved with accounts and bookkeeping, being able to manage accounts through Excel or other bookkeeping software will be hugely valuable. Already having Excel skills under your belt will therefore be hugely valuable when applying for graduate jobs in FinTech.
You will usually need a degree in business, accounting or finance to work as a Finance Assistant.
Those looking to become an Accountant at a FinTech company may benefit from an Accounting degree. Similar degrees may also be accepted.
In order to manage data, a background in Mathematics will be useful, as will a good understanding of data privacy standards.
3. IT Support
With all the new technology and software on the market, IT support is essential to ensure that clients are getting the most out of the software they use.
People working in IT support are invaluable to development teams, as they will highlight any bugs in software to be fixed. This ultimately improves value to users.
Skills and knowledge needed to work in FinTech IT Support jobs
- Soft skills
- Good communication and interpersonal skills are incredibly important for people working in IT Support graduate jobs in FinTech. They will deal with a lot of issues and complaints from clients. In order to be able to get their message across quickly and effectively, it helps if the individual can explain things simply to non-technical users.
- Problem-solving skills
- Technology is essentially a response to a problem or need. So, problem-solving skills are important at both development stages and for ongoing support for software. When offering IT support, problem-solving skills and intuition are important to ensure that you’re giving the best support possible on a case-by-case basis.
For a support role, you will likely receive training that is specific to the software you’re supporting.
However, it’s useful to at least have a background in IT. A-levels and/or a degree in Computing, Computer Science, or Software Engineering will help you to stand out from the crowd.
4. Client Services
Individuals working in client services graduate jobs in FinTech act as the vital point of liaison between the company and its clients/customers.
They will usually handle inbound inquiries, respond to any issues that arise, and manage relationships. These are essential for FinTech companies whose service or product is used by a range of clients.
Skills and knowledge needed to work in client services jobs in FinTech
- People skills
- In order to succeed in a client services role, being able to build and sustain relationships, liaise with new clients, and have the confidence to speak to senior employees is essential. Especially within the emerging industry of FinTech, the role requires someone who is able to liaise with clients to resolve problems, explain new concepts, or sell the product.
- Technical knowledge
- Having an understanding of both the finance side and the tech-side of FinTech will come in handy. But, in a client services job in FinTech, it is important that you understand the technology that is being used. Then you can feel confident explaining it to clients who may not be as tech-savvy. Especially within the finance industry, which is often thought to be quite traditional, explaining completely new concepts to non-technical users is incredibly important.
There is no specific degree required to work in client services jobs in FinTech.
In fact, the best thing is that the role can suit a real range of people with very different skill sets.
Now that we’ve looked at the key skills and qualifications you need to work in certain graduate jobs in FinTech…
How do you get your foot in the door?
One of the most popular ways of getting into FinTech as a career is through an internship (which may develop into a permanent role). This is particularly common with large banks and other financial services.
Another way to break into the industry is through a graduate scheme.
Many big FinTech companies will offer these to train people up to eventually move into a permanent role.
However, internships and graduate schemes are very competitive.
One alternative way you can stand out from the crowd is to provide a portfolio of your work wherever possible.
Any practical experience you can get on top of your education will also elevate your application above those who only have classroom experience.
In the meantime, try to develop your knowledge of financial services to better focus your job hunt. This was all help to make you a stronger candidate in the eyes of employers.