Some industries perhaps feel more exclusive to those with the necessary background. People might perceive finance in this light, as the sector might be filled with expert minds and experienced professionals.
For those keen to change their careers, learning finance at later stages in life may seem like an unrealistic prospect. However, it’s important to know that these aspirations are valid. If you have a strong work ethic, it’s possible to see this process through.
You can take many steps to change to a career in finance, even if you are starting without prior knowledge. We’ve detailed some of them for you down below.
Know You’re Not Alone
Undergoing a hefty career change might be a nerve-wracking process. It can feel like an unprecedented step to take.
That said, many people are embarking on a similar journey today. Late last year, it was reported that three in four workers were considering leaving their job in 2022. Knowing that people want to change can give you the courage to instigate yours and see it through, too.
This mindset is also important from a networking perspective. If you don’t have a strong background in finance, you might not know many people in the industry. Attending relevant conferences can help you find a mentor as well as help build up your network of contacts. The more you’re immersed in the financial world, the better.
Enrol on a Managerial Finance Course
You might be able to meet more people in the finance sector by embarking on an in-depth, online course. It is also a great way to realise the breadth of opportunities ahead of you.
For example, the LSE Managerial Finance online certificate course provides a deep analysis of financial terminology and how they apply in a business setting. You can also partake in online discussions and small group dialogues, giving you a chance to network with a cohort of professionals who might also be aspiring to move into financial management roles. Others may already be working in finance and aiming to refresh their knowledge.
A managerial finance course can give you the tools you need to make more informed managerial and investment decisions. The online offering requires 8-12 hours of your time each week, over 6 weeks, and you can learn in a way that suits your own schedule.
Investigate New Technologies
Technology has changed everything about how some sectors operate. FinTech terms may be innovating regularly with blockchain technology and vital cybersecurity changes. Forecasting and cash flow matters can be improved with predictive and artificial intelligence. There may also be updates to cash flow management software, cloud computing systems, and specialist invoicing tools.
Try not to think of finance as only a way to routinely track numbers. Many people in this line of work are seeking to innovate and push the boundaries of their roles. Technology is key to that, so learn more about how these systems operate if necessary.
You may not always need to start fresh when pursuing a career change in finance. After all, you might be somewhat computer literate already, so you might be able to build on that familiarity as you take your first steps into the financial world.
Think About Your Finances
Many graduates need to budget smartly to start their first job well. However, managing one’s finances is likely a constant requirement of any grown adult. Budgeting this and other aspects of your career change could be a good idea.
Track your monthly expenses and budget for the different areas you spend money. Pay off any debts if you can. Assess your household’s level of risk tolerance. Consider developing an emergency fund or backup plan to cover any unexpected setbacks.
If you need more money to make ends meet, a side hustle may help you get over the finish line. Remember, career changes don’t occur overnight. The development may be a very gradual process. Arrange your finances so you can live a sustainable lifestyle during that period.
A career change is an exciting time. That said, you must try not to be overexcited. The best workers in the finance world are realistic, rational, and make data-oriented decisions. Try to have an attitude that can match that. Making ends meet can be a valuable education in and of itself, too.
Read Financially Focused Outlets
Courses can help you gain many skills in financial management. That said, it is important to diversify your approach to learning more about money. It’s a process that should be part of your daily life.
There are media sources out there that provide commentary on all things in the financial world. A constant engagement with them could be crucial to your learning. It’s a more casual approach to learning. Your interest may also complement the knowledge you find on a course prospectus too.
Try to make sure that the outlets you learn from are reputable. The latest economic changes in the country can inform many financial decisions in business. Consequently, credibility is key when going through different online newspapers and journals.
Some financial outlets may have app versions of their publications. Download them and enable notifications. That way, you can be sure that you’ll be up to speed on all the latest financial news.
Reputable financial outlets may also have a community of like-minded individuals built around them. If there are civilised comment sections, reading those thoughtful discussions or joining them could be a good idea. You may also know readers of these outlets in your personal life, so starting a dialogue about what you read may help you explore and enjoy the topics further.
Keep Asking Questions
It could be said that there’s no ‘endpoint’ with finance. As you can see by the headings above, there is a constant undercurrent of change pushing things forward.
Firms constantly reevaluate their relationships with money, too. They want to make a profit however they can. Alternatively, they may be willing to sacrifice some earnings to pursue more ethical business practices. Situations can vary between companies.
Even people with prior knowledge of finance continue to learn about it. Therefore, it would help if you nurtured your curiosity and kept asking questions of yourself and others about that world. Resist the temptation to stop once you feel like you are finally ‘caught up’ with peers.
It’s possible to feel career burnout in somewhat stagnant and uninspiring fields. Try to be excited by the constantly shifting nature of finance-related work. You might not feel compelled to change fields again. Anything is possible in finance, and that can be thrilling.
Be excited rather than daunted about your career change to a finance role, and embrace the many exciting facets of learning and development that come with it.