Kangan Institute Blog

8 Skills Needed for a Career in Finance

It is no secret that working as a financial professional requires more than just good grades. Handling other people’s money definitely requires a certain type of person, particularly in today’s fast-evolving industry.

From bookkeeping to accounting, there are so many pathways that your career in finance can take you on. Not only must you demonstrate sharp analytical ability and strong communication skills, but also a deep understanding of technology and it’s ability to advance productivity. When it comes to being the best financial professional you can be, here are 8 skills that really count when pursuing your career in finance:

1. Interpersonal Skills

There was once a time when financial professionals were bound to an office, attached to a cubicle. However, nowadays, interpersonal skills are more important than ever. Workers are required to deal with people every day, constantly attempting to build successful relationships with co-workers and customers. If you want to excel in the financial field, being friendly and approachable is a big part of the job requirements.

2. Formal Qualifications

When pursuing a career in finance, there are a few things that can set you apart from the rest. While in some industries, hands-on experience and a dazzling personality can be enough to get you through the door, finance requires a little more paperwork. Because rigorous processes and standards rule the sector, formal accounting qualifications are desired. Whether that is studying a TAFE course, degree, certificate or diploma – education is as important as your expertise when securing a career in finance.

Kangan Institute offers a range of different certifications to get you qualified for a career in finance such as the Certificate IV in Accounting and Bookkeeping (FNS40217) which allows students to gain a range of skills including using MYOB accounting software and financial record preparation.

3. Problem Solving Skills

When working in finance, no two days will look the same. While it is important to have adequate knowledge of systems and processes, it is also essential to have the skills to tackle complex problems as and when they arise. Whether it’s addressing the financial dilemma of a business, or tackling a client’s tax dilemma, employers rely on employees that will pull through at challenging times. A good finance candidate takes action to find solutions.

4. Analytical Skills

Some of the most influential leaders in finance have the ability to think laterally, analysing scenarios and drawing suitable conclusions. They embrace and utilise this part of their role, demonstrating their ability to think in logic and order. This is an extremely important skill to have as a finance employee, as your job will require you to be well versed in rationality and putting emotion aside to come through with an adequate solution.

5. Technologically Savvy

Technological advancements have made waves in the financial industry. Not only have they made streamlining time consuming processes a breeze, but they have also increased speed and productivity in the majority of business practices. With this being said, financial professionals must place tech skills at the forefront of their learning. They must have knowledge in the most up to date programs, going above and beyond to excel in the specific tools and platforms that are relevant to the industry. Without this knowledge, you will find yourself falling behind and becoming less of an asset to the finance industry around you.

6. Desire to Innovate

While a career in finance may be traditionally associated with routines and systems, this does not mean there is no place for innovation. Productivity drives this industry, always looking for new ways to achieve and complete things. This is where you come in. Your innovation can streamline processes to speed and accuracy, helping to save time and money within your organisation. These efforts will help your career in leaps and bounds, showing that you are constantly pushing yourself to think outside the box.

7. Relationship Management Skills

When people come to see you, it’s because they have issues with money. In order to succeed as a financial professional, you need to retain a level of sensitivity and professionalism in your relationships. This comes with the territory, and also your ability to understand different personality types. You must ask the right questions, work to resolve conflict, as well as constantly educating and counselling clients. Clients require an unbiased advisor who can still remain sensitive, understanding their needs and assisting in financial decisions.

8. Exceptional Leadership

The most coveted and respected financial professionals are those that drive themselves forward through leadership and motivation. While you may not be in the highest management position, even entry-level financial jobs require a high level of leadership. Everything you do sets a foundation for those around you. From general project management, to spearheading team activities – these are the things that set you apart from the rest.

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