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FinTech, or financial technology, is an industry that uses new technology to improve financial services - like software used in accounting, or artificial intelligence in banking apps.
While the development of new tech has been disruptive to the traditional finance industry, businesses who adopt it are often able to offer better services and therefore become top competitors.
FinTech is growing rapidly, meaning that it is both an exciting and a lucrative industry to break into. Best of all, the FinTech industry offers a huge array of graduate jobs – ranging from UX design, to client services, to IT support and other tech-based roles. Check out more reasons why you should pursue a graduate job in FinTech.
So how do you go about getting a graduate job in FinTech? To give you insight into what is required to work in the industry, we’ll be looking at the typical skills, knowledge and qualifications that FinTech companies expect from candidates, in four very different roles – Software Developer, Finance Assistant, IT Support and Client Services.
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.
Those looking for graduate jobs as a Software Developer will likely need a Computer Science or Software Engineering degree, with additional experience of programming.
A Finance Assistant (or more specifically, 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.
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, although 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.
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, ultimately improving value to users.
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.
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 – essential for FinTech companies whose service or product is used by a range of clients.
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) - particularly common with large banks and other financial services.
Another way to break into the industry is through a graduate scheme, which many big FinTech companies will offer to train people up to eventually move into a permanent role.
However, internships and graduate schemes are very competitive – and one alternative, but arguably just as successful, 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 and help to make you a stronger candidate in the eyes of employers.