London has been a major financial centre for centuries and there’s no sign of that changing anytime soon – even with Brexit. London’s geographical advantage of being between the US and Asia markets means the whole financial world is in play. But there are more London finance jobs than just traders and brokers out there. But your degree in finance will help you land a variety of finance jobs in London.
Finance jobs that are right for you.
While the temptation to follow the money and take a position as a trader or stock broker is very real, these finance jobs aren’t for everyone. Finding a London finance job that makes you happy and appeals to your strengths is far more important. A corner office is nice but dreading the time you spend there isn’t. So, consider the following positions and find the one that’s right for you!
If you’ve got your eyes set on being Head of Finance one day, you’ll need to work your way up starting from a position as a finance officer. All major corporations have finance jobs and finance officers help clients and colleagues with financial support. Tasks range from preparing budgets and balance sheets to resolving financial disputes and supporting the finance manager with daily tasks. Finance degrees are usually required to be considered for the position. However, a business or mathematics degree will usually suffice. The ability to use SAP and Quickbooks is also a plus as much of your work will be done electronically.
Salary numbers for finance officers show an average annual salary of around £36,000. However, applying for entry level positions without any experience the salary drops to around £29,000 with the ceiling for experienced professionals capping out at £65,000.
Working with other investment analysts in a company, a junior investment analyst is primarily responsible for providing investment data and recommendations to fund managers. You can find this finance job at investment banks and private equity firms to charities and insurance companies. Researching companies, analysing and interpreting financial data, and staying up-to-date on economic trends and financial markets are normal tasks for junior investment analysts. Having a certification from the Chartered Institute for Securities and Investment or through the CFA Institute will help secure finance jobs and quicken the pace for becoming an investment analyst with your own clients.
For someone looking at an entry level position, an annual salary for positions as a junior investment analyst average around £32,000. After a few years of experience and a growing client pool of your own, salaries in the range of £45,000 to £55,000 are common. But don’t forget about performance based bonuses on top of those numbers.
Ever wonder who’s in charge of those credit applications at banks and retail stores? That would be the credit manager. These finance jobs are responsible for applying an institution’s credit policy with consistency while assessing an applicant’s creditworthiness. 4 or 5 years of experience are usually required to be considered for the position. Degrees in finance, accounting or business are typical requirements, as well. However, experience with credit ratings and credit accounts also make a big difference. You won’t have any problem finding companies or banks looking for credit managers in London.
You can expect an average salary of around £52,000 for positions requiring a few years of experience. Once you’ve worked at the same company for another few years you can see your salary grow to as much as £80,000.
There are a lot of finance jobs in London that depend on financial controllers to run the show. Controllers are the ones responsible for looking after the accounting department at a financial firm or bank. Producing and analysing financial data, creating and monitoring internal financial controls, and complying with new financial legislation and legal requirements. You’ll definitely need to have loads of experience to get a position as a controller. However, learning the ropes as a junior controller and working your way up is the best way to gain relevant experience.
Junior controllers can expect salaries around £40,000 with previous experience in finance. You can command a £65,000 salary once you make it through the ranks. After holding the position and making it your long-term career path, salaries in the neighbourhood of £85,000 aren’t out of the question.
Finance jobs for asset managers run the gamut from managing office buildings and homes to intellectual property and financial accounts. It’s entirely dependent on who the company or institution you work for does their business with. You’ll be expected to take over financial and administrative tasks for the given portfolio you’re in charge of. This isn’t too different from what a portfolio manager would be in charge of. The difference is the type of assets you’re dealing with. It’s also quite common to get a taste for the field by starting as a junior portfolio manager and working your way up.
When applying for an asset manager, relevant experience is definitely a prerequisite. A few years under your belt could command an annual salary of around £45,000. However, there are many companies and institutions that will pay somewhere closer to £65,000 for experienced asset managers.
Risk and uncertainty are the names of the game. If you enjoy the statistical side of finance jobs and assessing levels of risk involved in investments, then the actuarial sciences are for you. Large actuarial departments are usually found at insurance companies. However, investment firms and banking institutions hire their fair share, as well. An actuary must be accurate when correctly assessing the level of risk a certain investment brings to the firm. All positions will require experience and some will prefer professional certification. There is the Institute and Faculty of Actuaries that have a wealth of information on the steps needed to become a professional actuary.
Looking at positions in London, the average salary for actuarial jobs comes in around £60,000. If you’re just breaking into the field, starting positions are offering around £35,000 to £40,000 per year. Salaries for an actuary top out at around £85,000.
While an actuary is assessing different types of risk for a company, a risk manager is concerned with monitoring and minimising the different types of risk a company is prone to. These risks can be financial but are also spread across multiple departments like public relations and human resources. You’ll need an analytical mind and be able to enact company policies and protocol to prevent unnecessary risk. Creating risk reports and dealing with customers and clients are also a major part of the job description. The position has the ability to prevent profit losses and is often tied to performance bonuses at the end of the year.
The average salary for positions as a risk manager in London is around £60,000. Starting positions without too many years of experience are much lower at around £40,000. As with many of the jobs on this list, the ceiling is around £90,000.