Finance in layman terms means ‘the management of money’. It is one of the most coveted sectors of work, wherein there is no dearth of employment opportunities, as this sector pays the highest average salaries. The finance sector can be divided into two major areas, namely, Banking Financial Services and Insurance (BFSI) and non-BFSI sectors that offer a myriad of job roles.
In the sections below we will elaborate on a few career options from both BFSI and non-BFSI sectors:
This is the most popular area within the BFSI sector and involves roles like mergers and acquisitions, where you value and advise a firm that is being bought or sold, capital markets where you raise finances for clients, and trading, structuring and research, in stocks, bonds, foreign exchange or derivatives.
Corporate, Private and Retail Banking
A similar role to that of investment banking - these roles manage clients’ money, the only difference being the size and sophistication of clients. Corporate bankers deal with small and medium enterprises, private bankers with high net worth individuals, and retail bankers with the average retail investor who mostly looks at stocks and bonds.
Non-Banking Financial Companies Also known as investment, wealth or asset management firms. The job profile includes investing in simple financial products such as stocks, fixed income instruments, mutual funds, real estate and some regulated derivatives.
Bank Probationary Officer Exam
In India, students could give a Bank PO Exam to work as tellers, risk analysts and credit analysts with public sector banks or give examinations for positions with the Reserve Bank of India.
Policy-Making and Central Banking
For those who intend to pursue finance up to a postgraduate or PhD levels, can look at policy-making with government organisations/departments or look for roles in central banking.
An actuary is an expert at analysing risk by forecasting uncertain events in the future, and then putting a monetary value on them. Most actuarial jobs are in the insurance sector or actuarial/risk consulting, with firms like AIG, Allianz, Willis Towers Watson and PwC. These companies have finance divisions which consist of accounting and finance professionals.
It involves working in the capacity of a financial analyst or expert with small or large firms as all of them have a finance department. Companies like Uber, Facebook, Walmart or even Ford have such departments and you could start in accounting, assurance, tax or corporate finance. Within the same sector, you could also work for firms like Oliver Wyman, Grant Thornton, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, KPMG and PricewaterhouseCoopers offering financial consulting, accounting,tax audit and financial reporting services.
To pursue a career in finance, students can look for hybrid degrees too that offer finance as the second wheel. This is recommended because not a lot of universities offer an undergraduate or postgraduate programme in just finance. The Indian School of Business and Finance, New Delhi offers two programmes namely, BSc (Hons) Accounting and Finance and BSc (Hons) Economics and Finance at an undergraduate level. It also offers a 1-year graduate diploma programme in finance. The students from these programmes have gone on to pursue master’s at prestigious universities. These programmes are designed, assessed and examined by London School of Economics making it a world-class curriculum to pursue. Students receive a degree/diploma from University Of London, at half the cost of what one would usually incur by getting a foreign education.