When people think about financial services, they often think of banks, mortgage lenders and credit card companies. While these are all part of the industry, financial services also include many more types of companies. The industry encompasses everything that touches money, and it affects individuals, small businesses, large corporations, governments and nonprofits alike. When it comes to career choices, financial services offer a variety of options and a broad range of salaries. However, there are a few things you should consider before jumping into the finance world.
Pros of a career in financial services
There are many pros to working in the finance industry, including a diverse set of skills and potential to earn high salaries. It is also a relatively collaborative environment, and it’s not as cutthroat as other areas of the business world. In addition, because financial services play such an integral role in people’s lives, the work is very meaningful.
As the digital economy grows, so does demand for professionals with financial services skills. With more people using online payment systems, mobile banking apps and digital credit cards, there is a great opportunity for those with the right skills to make their mark in this rapidly expanding area.
A strong financial services sector is essential to the prosperity of a nation’s population. When it’s robust, it can boost consumer confidence and purchasing power, and help individuals save for big purchases. In contrast, a failing system can drag down the entire economy.
There are a wide variety of careers within the financial services industry, ranging from credit unions to Wall Street. Individuals interested in working in the field can choose from jobs like insurance agents, investment bankers, securities traders and financial advisors. In addition, those with specialized knowledge can choose to focus on specific areas of the market, such as insurance underwriting or asset management.
Another major aspect of the industry is consumer finance, which includes credit card services, mortgage lenders and personal and student loans. This is a growing area of the market, and many companies are leveraging digital technology to compete with incumbents. For example, American Express offers a popular credit card that rewards customers with points they can redeem for travel and other benefits.
The financial services industry also encompasses a number of support functions, such as accounting and tax filing firms, wire transfer and currency exchange services, credit card network companies and global payment providers like Visa and Mastercard. These entities provide the backbone of the industry, and they help keep things running smoothly. It is not unusual for one company to operate in multiple sectors of the industry, a practice known as vertical integration. This allows them to diversify their earnings and better protect themselves from risks associated with specific sectors.