My Career Transition Journey In Investment Banking
While many students have a clear objective of becoming an investment banker from the very start and hence, they proceed to the standard IB recruitment process, other students take a different approach to building a career in investment banking.
I'm from the latter category of people, who decided to take a roundabout approach to become an investment banker. In this article, I'll share some of the major tips that will help you transition into investment banking.
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Is Investment Banking a Good Career to Get Into?
Investment banking is a great career option if you are interested in the finance sector and wish to pursue an exciting, fruitful, and highly rewarding job. An investment banking career can be very demanding as it requires many skills, abilities, and research. It not only offers enough challenges for the individuals to kick start their career in the most interesting way but also rewards them with attractive salary benefits.
Additionally, there is a massive growth in investment banking careers because of the boom in the finance sector of the country. So, one can stay assured that investment banking is going to stay in demand in the upcoming years.
Pro Tips to Transition Career into Investment Banking
I am a computer engineer turned investment banker and below are some tips that helped me make a smooth career shift to the field of investment banking.
Take Personality and Skill Assessment Test
A career in investment banking requires multiple professional and personal skills, such as proficiency in computer and software like Excel, working knowledge of accounting and finance, valuation and research skills, and so on. In addition, the people who successfully transition into the finance sector also have some non-finance skills, like interpersonal skills, communication skills, problem-solving abilities, and so on.
So, the first step I took is testing my abilities and investment banking skills in order to see my fitness for the finance sector. I did this by giving an online career assessment test. You can do the same or even contact a professional career consultant for guidance. This step has greatly helped me to determine how well my skills, knowledge, and abilities match the career requirement in the IB field.
Research and Conduct Informational Interviews
The next best thing I've done towards my transition into the IB career is learning about the sector from its very core. I've talked to my friends and colleagues who are already working in this field and it greatly helped me in setting my career path. And if you don't know anyone in this field, then don't worry. Another good idea is to join various social networking platforms like LinkedIn to connect with professionals in this field and then take their informational interviews.
And before conducting an interview, do as much research as you can. Trust me, you can get plenty of knowledge on the internet, but don't blindly follow anything you read on the internet. Instead, rely on trusted and official sources.
This step will make sure you have a career road map and thus know what skills and steps you need to become a professional in the field of finance.
Take a Professional Investment Banking Course
Finally, the most important step I've taken to transition my career into the IB field is enrolling in an investment banking course. Although there are many IB courses available out there, not each one of them is worth considering. Therefore, enroll in a high-quality investment banking course with a placement guarantee, by trusted and reputed institutes. By earning a good certificate in investment banking, you can easily get placed after the completion of your course.
… And, Get Hired!
Once you've completed your course, the next thing will be to apply for the jobs and prepare for the interviews. This is perhaps the most important but also the hardest part of transitioning into the IB sector. But if you've prepared well, you will sail through this step very smoothly. Since most banks and financial corps hire in January and February, I started my preparation in November itself. During this time, I sent my resumes and took practice tests for the interview round. This gave me an edge over my competitors.
In general, most IB job interviews consist of three rounds, including a written test, a psychometric test, and a personal interview. For the written round, I prepared really well for quantitative aptitude. Note that this is the most important test as it evaluates your quant skills. Interviewers also ask other questions to test your problem-solving skills under pressure.
So, this was my transition journey in investment banking. I hope it helps you in achieving your goals. Transitioning into this career is an exciting opportunity and if you prepare well with full dedication, you can land the job of your dreams very soon. Good luck!