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Career Pathing in Finance Roles

Things Finance Job Seekers Should Consider to Help Progress Their Career

For job seekers interested in finance positions, developing a career path is a way to capitalize on growth and evolution in the finance industry. Career pathing helps align opportunities for employee growth with corporate priorities. Through developing a career path, job seekers identify and pursue learning opportunities that will expand their knowledge, enhance existing skills and develop new capabilities that will help them achieve their goals.

Career pathing is important for current financial professionals looking to advance, as well as those intending to enter this growing field. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, financial service positions, such as financial analysts, investment analysts and finance risk specialists, are projected to grow 8% over the next 10 years, faster than the average for all occupations.

The Financial Services Job Market Is Growing

In 2024, the financial services job market is projected to see significant growth, with considerable openings expected to become available. Through 2032, around 27,400 job openings for financial analysts are projected each year, on average. Many of these openings are expected to result from the need to replace workers who shift into different industries or exit the workforce due to retirement.

These moves will open doors for those entering the field, while also creating opportunities for current finance professionals to advance or move laterally in the industry through career pathing.

At the same time, finance departments across all industries will be continuously challenged to adapt their staffing and recruitment practices to meet the demands of the digital era through finance transformation . This will lead to a greater emphasis on finding skilled professionals willing to evolve their skills and harness digital technology to provide the predictive insights necessary to shape strategy and manage risks.

Taken together, these opportunities make this an ideal time to think about entering or advancing in the field.

Career Opportunities in Corporate Finance

When considering career paths within finance, two of the broadest categories for career opportunities fall within corporate finance and public finance.

Responsibilities of Corporate Finance Professionals

Corporate finance professionals manage the finances of an organization. The responsibilities of these roles often include overseeing financial growth initiatives, preparing and evaluating company financial reports, studying and forecasting economic trends and implementing strategies to maximize the financial value of a business.

Career opportunities abound for finance professionals looking to progress their careers. Common corporate finance roles include financial analysts and accounting managers.

Responsibilities of Public Finance Professionals

Public finance professionals focus on the financial health of public entities such as states, cities, school districts, municipalities or government agencies. People in these roles review government finance systems for efficiencies, monitor tax collection and distribution of government funds, and account for the government spending, among other duties.

Other Career Opportunities in Financial Services

Finance professionals can work across a myriad of industries and business segments, including:

  • Banking for retail commercial and corporate organizations and capital markets
  • Lending for the mortgage, automotive and education sectors
  • Financial analysis and risk management for insurance companies that encompass property and casualty coverage and wealth management
  • Investment services and risk analysis

How to Career Path in Finance

Career advancement in finance benefits from deliberate planning. When developing a finance career path, job seekers should carefully think through the following criteria and requirements to ensure their plans are realistic, actionable and sustainable for long-term growth and success.

Establish Career Goals and Key Success Milestones

Initially, job seekers should determine objectives, then define and map out the necessary steps. As examples, a job seeker might consider building a network of finance professionals to discuss their objectives in terms of growth opportunities within their contacts’ organizations. Learning from the experiences and insights of others is time well spent. Or one might concentrate on earning a first performance-based promotion.

Conduct Self-Assessments to Identify Skills Gaps and Chart Skill Progression

This is the process of assessing personal strengths and weaknesses and defining the specific trainings needed. At the most basic level, employers typically require a bachelor’s degree in finance or a related field, such as business or economics.

Depending on the role, some employers may require additional education and credentials such as an MBA or the Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) designation. And, as with most careers, it helps to have strong communication, problem-solving and teamwork skills. Acting on this step may involve setting benchmarks of skill levels or marking achievements to demonstrate progress over time.

Develop Technical Skills and Needed Qualifications to Enhance Expertise

Finance job seekers should fill in these identified skill gaps by taking courses to master new technology entrants, stay on top of evolving technologies, or learn specific skills that will make them better equipped to provide impact in a new finance role.

Where are the opportunities for impact? Regarding changes in demand for certain skill sets, hiring for payroll accountants, tax analysts, financial consultants, tax specialists, billing supervisors, and project accountants have all seen a significant increase in demand month over month.

Moreover, when hiring for finance roles, the demand for skills including HyperText Markup Language (HTML), income tax and billing systems also saw an increase in recent months.

Internships, part-time roles or contracted positions can help job seekers differentiate themselves. This is also an excellent way to gain valuable and varied industry experience.

Additionally, artificial intelligence is being used more frequently in finance to automate repetitive tasks such as data entry or generating reports. Having experience with AI is a good example of an in-demand skill that can make a candidate stand out.

How Talent Solutions Companies Can Help Foster Career Pathing to Hiring

Staffing agencies can be a job seeker’s most valuable resource. Because they are employers’ trusted partners, staffing companies have a keen grasp of employer needs and a clear picture of the skills necessary to meet those needs.

Aston Carter is a talent solutions and staffing expert that understands its clients, their business and hiring challenges, and the importance of connecting employers to fully capable, high-potential finance professionals. Leveraging these relationships and our expertise within the recruitment space, we’re uniquely positioned to provide reliable information on job opportunities and career development advice to help job seekers throughout their careers.

Aston Carter helps job seekers advance their finance careers through career pathing. We can help you find the finance positions that fit your skills and career goals, while working with you throughout the recruitment and hiring process.

Contact an Aston Carter recruiter in an office near you for assistance in creating a plan and landing your next finance position, or browse open job opportunities today.

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