Every successful and lasting business is dependent on a robust and smooth financial operation to ensure its growth and maximize its revenues. Therefore, such organizations make sure that they hire the best professionals to handle high-stress financial processes. They are well aware that none of their investments can bear fruit without a competent and intelligent person managing the tasks.
These men are equipped with sound knowledge of the functions and are excellent decision-makers. Their timeliness and ability to implement strategies make them a vital component of any business. Looking at this scenario, it is genuinely a fascinating field in terms of the tact required and the rewards involved. A financial analyst performs all of the said functions and provides a solid foundation.
If you find yourself passionate about the roles mentioned above and want to explore more, you have come to the right place. We’ll put forth a guide for you to become a financial analyst. So, let’s begin.
1. Career Outlook
The financial analyst role is an excellent one, and so, the job growth is promising too. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the profession is a witness for growth, maintaining a rate of about 11 percent until the year 2026. That accounts for an increase of more than 32,000 jobs, which is a higher rate as compared to other professions.
To enter any professional field, you need to have a thorough experience and proper know-how of it. There are certifications, such as Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA), to ensure a high-paying job. These can yield the best results when coupled with online resources and digital tools. Another good thing about becoming a financial analyst is there is no strict minimum qualification. That can genuinely provide a competitive edge to excel in the profession. Now, you may be thinking: why major in finance in the presence of so many certifications? Well, the answer is quite simple. For instance, an analyst who has an MBA in finance can secure a job faster. Also, it may keep your chances of growth intact in cutthroat competition and job environment so that you may equip yourself with as much qualification as possible.
3. Nature of Work
The essential nature of the job for a financial analyst is pretty impressive, as it is related to dealing with ordinary tasks. Your primary role is to know as much as you can about the macro-economy. Secondly, your part may be to monitor and gather relevant information about competitors. Here, you are required to scan their necessary details and balance sheets from a macroeconomic point of view. Being an analyst means that you also have to read the significant publications to be fully aware of the financial happenings. You may also be required to travel occasionally to visit different institutions.
Since the role of a financial analyst is an important one, their salary is not mediocre either. Although the initial salary may not seem as promising, once you’re settled, you begin to enjoy the perks. According to an estimate, the average salary for the role stands at $61,971 per annum. Then, of course, it depends on the organization that you join. Many high-profile companies, such as a Wall Street firm, will offer you better salaries. Also, before you settle with a specific remuneration, you have to make sure that it also offers perks and privileges. In this way, you can be sure not to leave anything on the table and fetch a higher deal.
The Financial analysis is a broad terminology, and so it offers diverse career pathways. There are three clear distinctions concerning the job role, and it would benefit from having a brief look at each of them. Firstly, there’s a buy aside. Here, a financial analyst advises a client regarding the investment in the stock. They also assist them in terms of buying an investment company or in forecasting economic developments. The second is the sell side, where the analysts assess and compare the securities in a designated industry or sector. Then, they develop research reports, recommending a particular action using specific terminologies. The analysts also help track the client’s stocks and help them make crucial selling decisions. The data they generate and the quantitative analysis they perform proves to be vital. The third distinctive role that these analysts play is related to equity analysis. They help companies strike better deals and evaluate their options. That may include mergers and acquisitions and initial public offerings (IPOs). For making these critical decisions, equity analysts carefully assess the financial conditions and put forth essential recommendations.
As true with any profession, the progression in this field is essential. If you are in your student years, you have an excellent opportunity to forge new connections and build your professional base. You can do so by joining an investment club, launch a group of your own, or associate yourself with a mentor. Taking these steps will ensure that you have a strong networking base to accelerate your career.
Any analyst, regardless of their origin or specialization, needs to be skilled with specific tools and platforms. As an analyst, you will need to be very good at spreadsheets, databases, and interpreting financial reports. It is imperative to highlight the skills and capabilities in your CV in a presentable way.
Becoming a financial analyst is easy if you have the passion and zeal for the job. But to do so and to remain relevant in a rapidly changing job environment, you need to equip yourself with some right qualifications. It is essential to earn a remarkable degree, such as a Master’s, to make an impact. Also, there’s no harm in acquiring a certification to complement your degree. Integrating with digital means will strengthen your efforts and provide you an edge. The key is to determine the area you specialty you want to have, followed by networking with likeminded colleagues, experts, and mentors.