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Advice for a jobless Finance major since one year after graduation?

Discussion in 'Business, Careers & Education' started by Saturdays, Apr 10, 2011.

  1. nate10184

    nate10184 Well-Known Member

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    Thanks, I haven't been avoiding this technique. It's just getting your foot in sometimes means being a Administrative Assistant which usually is simply being a Secretary.
    Point is I have been doing this to a certain extent with me filtering out the jobs that can open up to bigger, better or different opportunities. Maybe I should widen my scope a little.

    Thanks for the advise, gives me something more to apply and consider.


    I wouldn't settle for an AA position but I think just about anything else would work. As long as you don't have aspirations of going into banking, there aren't many jobs that are going to preclude you from making a lateral move into a finance department. You were a finance major so I think the "I work in ____ right now but my goal has always been to do something finance related, even if it means starting over in an entry level position" story will still work for you. I'm all too familiar with how this game works, PM me if you want.
     
  2. Saturdays

    Saturdays Well-Known Member

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    I wouldn't settle for an AA position but I think just about anything else would work. As long as you don't have aspirations of going into banking, there aren't many jobs that are going to preclude you from making a lateral move into a finance department. You were a finance major so I think the "I work in ____ right now but my goal has always been to do something finance related, even if it means starting over in an entry level position" story will still work for you. I'm all too familiar with how this game works, PM me if you want.

    Will do if needed. Appreciate the help!
     
  3. Quadcammer

    Quadcammer Well-Known Member

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    My most ideal job would be to run a mutual fund for a company or at least participate in the analysis that goes into the purchases and decisions the fund managers make, obviously this is not the end-point but possibly a mid-point into a career.

    If you are interested in buy side money management, I'd strongly recommend you sign up for and study for the CFA program while looking for work.

    Even passing the level one exam will give you something of a leg up (just be VERY careful how your represent that achievement as the CFA guidelines are strict). You won't become a charter holder until you have 4 years of IM experience, but at least you'll show you have the aptitude for the work as well as the discipline to get through the studying.

    Just know that its a lot of work.
     
  4. Saturdays

    Saturdays Well-Known Member

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    If you are interested in buy side money management, I'd strongly recommend you sign up for and study for the CFA program while looking for work.

    Even passing the level one exam will give you something of a leg up (just be VERY careful how your represent that achievement as the CFA guidelines are strict). You won't become a charter holder until you have 4 years of IM experience, but at least you'll show you have the aptitude for the work as well as the discipline to get through the studying.

    Just know that its a lot of work.


    Y'know what, i have no idea why I have not started doing this. I will start getting things together so I can at least be ready for the process when it arrives. Might be useful in Interviews, I can tell the Interviewers that I have already taken the first exam and need this experience so I can continue pursuing the CFA.

    Thanks a ton, since essentially Buy Side Money Management is what I am looking for is either managing funds and/or providing the analysis to how the fun operates.
     
  5. Pennglock

    Pennglock Well-Known Member

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    Saturdays, you need to relentlessly tap your school's alumni network. Career services will have a list of guys who have made themselves available for advising/mentoring, and also lists of guys who have done recruiting at your school. You can also get on LinkedIn and search for alumni connections that way. Also, if you live in a major city you school will have some kind of alumni club that has events a few times a year.

    Get in touch with as many of these alumni as you can under the pretext of an informatinoal interview to learn about the industry they work in. Come to the phonecall with some good questions prepared, but don't come off as asking for a job.

    People genuinely like to help young folks like yourself get on their feet, and more importantly they love an excuse to talk about themselves and their work.

    You will get your resume passed into the right hands doing this, and some good leads. But in this economy you have to get the law of large numbers working in your favor. Stay busy.
     
  6. clee1982

    clee1982 Well-Known Member

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    How good is your math., not like I am good at algebra and calculus, I mean real math.

    Operation Research is actually a decent route, and you can tailor towards either supply chain management or Financial Engineering. If MFE is too quantitative for your taste, then you can indeed go for master of finance, though if you want couple years of experience, then go for MBA is better than master of finance by miles (assuming you get into top schools).

    I don't know how well the mutual fund guys get paid, but I would imagine not that well, if you really want to invest and analyze company, I would say go fundamental or long/short buy side fund, though then you're back to square one as most would want you to have either research or IBD experience.

    I myself is in an rather exotic asset class, I have difficulty in getting into buy side other than my asset class (not all buy side are good, I deal with a very large chunk of moron on daily basis...). Had I known this I would probably have tried harder to get into IBD (or more generalist than I am now), IBD wasn't really my thing to start with.



    I have very little tolerance for Accounitng and if I can avoid it I will. I'm only 22 so yes I am young, probably a big downside when looking for a job. I am considering getting a degree in Supply Chain from MSU since it usually is regarded as the #1 or #2 school for Supply Chain. My most ideal job would be to run a mutual fund for a company or at least participate in the analysis that goes into the purchases and decisions the fund managers make, obviously this is not the end-point but possibly a mid-point into a career. However I am very flexible, not because I am desperate, but because I have many interests I am willing to pursue and not afraid to make, let's say, Supply Chain as my career choice, even though I have an interest in Finance.

    My father keeps stressing I get an MBA or Master's but everyone I speak with other than family and friends tells me to work 2-3 yrs before pursuing a MBA or Master's. Also pursuing a Master's in Finance is not an easy task particularly because most schools require previous work/studies in various programming language. I have also thought of diversifying myself by getting a degree in something more specialized like Retailing or Video/Film design, and this might gear me for corporations in that industry.



    I try my best to lower my standards but maybe I am not lowering enough.
     
  7. Levator Superioris

    Levator Superioris Well-Known Member

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    Jan 18, 2009
    No offense but the longer you wait between school and your job you diminish the value of your degree... also a potential employer may think there is something wrong that you haven't found a full time job.
     
  8. Saturdays

    Saturdays Well-Known Member

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    Saturdays, you need to relentlessly tap your school's alumni network. Career services will have a list of guys who have made themselves available for advising/mentoring, and also lists of guys who have done recruiting at your school. You can also get on LinkedIn and search for alumni connections that way. Also, if you live in a major city you school will have some kind of alumni club that has events a few times a year.

    Get in touch with as many of these alumni as you can under the pretext of an informatinoal interview to learn about the industry they work in. Come to the phonecall with some good questions prepared, but don't come off as asking for a job.

    People genuinely like to help young folks like yourself get on their feet, and more importantly they love an excuse to talk about themselves and their work.

    You will get your resume passed into the right hands doing this, and some good leads. But in this economy you have to get the law of large numbers working in your favor. Stay busy.


    I have not tried going through the school's alumni network, but I have used my school's LinkedIn Alumni network. I frequent it often and try to get leads on potential jobs through there. I guess it wouldn't hurt to call the school for some help, I did pay them enough for 4 years of school, might as well get my money's worth.
     
  9. superego

    superego Well-Known Member

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    Location:
    Seattle
    My story:
    Graduated Finance from Mich. State University. Did a few local internships at Morgan Stanley and accounting/finance departments at local hospitals.
    Since I graduated last May I have been working part time for a physician managing his business.
    I have been expressing my interest to relocate for positions to any state within the USA.

    I've been successful in acquiring interviews at big name companies: Intel, HP, Ralph Lauren, Target, Dell..to name a few. I have also received job offers for jobs in the Financial rep field (which I have no interest of pursuing).

    Now it has been a year and I just found out that the job I was betting on just let me know I will not be getting a job with them.
    I've used all the connections I have, dad works at HP, uncle works at CitiBank, friend used to be in IB, past room mate works for GE.. and thats only the people who were at arms length away from me, I've contacted many people who these people know as well.

    I am currently living in MI and I have been debating on moving to a big city out of state and maybe getting a local job or a temp job. I'm getting desperate and I know a 1 yr gap from graduation to working in the industry looks bad and can become difficult to explain without making myself look unappealing.

    any advice would be great!


    tl;dr: Graduated from MSU last May with BA in Finance, been looking for a job as an Analyst, IB, Fund management, etc.. but not limiting myself to only Finance also been looking at Accounting/Supply Chain/Marketing


    (1) Move to NY if you want to do finance other than the FA thing.
    (2) Keep your options open, take what you get and continue looking for something better while you do. You're not in a position to be rejecting offers, IMO. If that's too much work for you (ie, you'd rather reject offers), perhaps finance isn't for you.
    (3) The job market in finance is incredibly tight right now, even moreso outside of NYC and even moreso with a run of the mill pedigree. My general advice is to take what you can get (it's just your first job, afterall) and keep looking.
     
  10. Bane

    Bane Active Member

    Messages:
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    Mar 27, 2011
    ^^ Take what full time position you can get, within reason.
    - Consider consulting firms: Accenture , E&Y and the like. They have incredible turnover rates and you might be able to slide in full time or secure a winter internship.
    - Remember insurance firms. They tend to be hungrier for candidates. Not sure if you can get sponsored for the series 6 with an internship or part time, but it's worth a try if you can't find full time. Once you snag the 6, get the 7.
    - Don't up and move without adequate living expenses (~6 months). Try crashing on a friend's couch in a closer, larger market like Chicago rather than taking off for NY. Once you're inside a major corporation you can always transfer to their NY office.
    - Volunteer. Anything that makes this gap appear productive.
    - Keep your head up. Nothing screams "don't hire me" like desperation.
     
  11. seeker24

    seeker24 New Member

    Messages:
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    Apr 11, 2011
    I don't think that there is something wrong in pursuing your dream job from another job. get one while making arrangements to switch to a new one you love when it clicks before you lose out at both ends.
     
  12. Saturdays

    Saturdays Well-Known Member

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    (1) Move to NY if you want to do finance other than the FA thing.
    (2) Keep your options open, take what you get and continue looking for something better while you do. You're not in a position to be rejecting offers, IMO. If that's too much work for you (ie, you'd rather reject offers), perhaps finance isn't for you.
    (3) The job market in finance is incredibly tight right now, even moreso outside of NYC and even moreso with a run of the mill pedigree. My general advice is to take what you can get (it's just your first job, afterall) and keep looking.


    I've only declined offers that were positions that would simply be me selling insurance to companies and individuals, and FA positions. A few of these positions I was given the job during the interview and an offer within 3 days.
    Edward Jones is a great company but the fact that they make you go door to door every day for 2 years straight to build up your business is very stupid, quite humiliating, and in my area an already tapped market; not to mention that Charles Schwab reserves the right to turn down the job after 2 years and take all the business you have built up by making you sign legal documents to get the job in the first place.
    Once you start in FA you usually end in FA from what I've seen.


    ^^ Take what full time position you can get, within reason.
    - Consider consulting firms: Accenture , E&Y and the like. They have incredible turnover rates and you might be able to slide in full time or secure a winter internship.
    - Remember insurance firms. They tend to be hungrier for candidates. Not sure if you can get sponsored for the series 6 with an internship or part time, but it's worth a try if you can't find full time. Once you snag the 6, get the 7.
    - Don't up and move without adequate living expenses (~6 months). Try crashing on a friend's couch in a closer, larger market like Chicago rather than taking off for NY. Once you're inside a major corporation you can always transfer to their NY office.
    - Volunteer. Anything that makes this gap appear productive.
    - Keep your head up. Nothing screams "don't hire me" like desperation.


    I do my best to apply to consulting firms since it is a pretty hot job on the market. I have applied to several companies that have consulting arms, Dell, HP, Accenture, E&Y, PwC etc.. However I never actually got an interview for a consulting position. Its quite an appealing job, mainly because my dad works at EDS/HP as an Exec Consultant for Cloud Services and deals with pretty large global corporations. Its a shame that an Internship usually requires a candidate to be getting credit in school.
    I have been keeping my head up, if its one thing I can do is look good, professional and keep my cool, stay classy y'know.
    I have been working as a Business Manager part time for a physician.
    I can move to Chicago, Dallas or Boston pretty inexpensively since I have friends/family there. NY would be tough obviously but I have parents who can help for the most part.

    I don't think that there is something wrong in pursuing your dream job from another job. get one while making arrangements to switch to a new one you love when it clicks before you lose out at both ends.

    yes you are right, this is what I am trying to do. trying to get a position that can help me get to the dream job. This is the hardest part it seems and I am definitely not limiting myself to applying to my dream job, I have been applying to consulting, analyst, IB, supply chain, marketing, and etc.. jobs , knowing full well that once I am working I can easily move around a company after a year or two years of working hard.
     
  13. Matt

    Matt Well-Known Member

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    I like this kid, he listens well and considers options. A bit short-on-direction, but shit, he's 22.

    Good luck with it Saturdays.
     
  14. Saturdays

    Saturdays Well-Known Member

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    I like this kid, he listens well and considers options. A bit short-on-direction, but shit, he's 22.

    Good luck with it Saturdays.


    Thanks. I find it important to consider people's advice, especially if they've been there and done that. Like you said I'm only 22 and stil inexperienced compared to the lot of you.
     
  15. SkinnyGoomba

    SkinnyGoomba Well-Known Member

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    The world needs ditchdiggers too

    LOL, they're making 225K in AUS.

    Saturdays,
    If you do end up going the FA route try and make it happen with a worthwhile company like Wells Fargo or Bank of America for ML. My understanding is that WFC has a great commission structure for advisors and they're allowed to cross sell and sell other banking products. I know a PNC advisor who switched to WFC and is happier.

    If you become an advisor at a bank that doesn't require aggressive knocking down of doors than you might be fine with it. Most of the advisors that I've spoken to dont do a very good job of selling, they're a bit lazy and want you to do all of the work. I think if you really work for your clients you'll do quite well.

    I would skip the insurance companies and the like, I wouldn't buy any of the products they sell, so I personally wouldn't want to sell them.

    I love finance, love the stock market, ect. I hated working in the industry, I'm much much happier working where i am now.
     
  16. Lord-Barrington

    Lord-Barrington Well-Known Member

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    LOL, they're making 225K in AUS.

    Saturdays,
    If you do end up going the FA route try and make it happen with a worthwhile company like Wells Fargo or Bank of America for ML. My understanding is that WFC has a great commission structure for advisors and they're allowed to cross sell and sell other banking products. I know a PNC advisor who switched to WFC and is happier.

    If you become an advisor at a bank that doesn't require aggressive knocking down of doors than you might be fine with it. Most of the advisors that I've spoken to dont do a very good job of selling, they're a bit lazy and want you to do all of the work. I think if you really work for your clients you'll do quite well.

    I would skip the insurance companies and the like, I wouldn't buy any of the products they sell, so I personally wouldn't want to sell them.

    I love finance, love the stock market, ect. I hated working in the industry, I'm much much happier working where i am now.


    Serious question, but does anyone aside from the rainmaker MDs actually like working in finance? It seems like the crappiest industry ever.
     
  17. SkinnyGoomba

    SkinnyGoomba Well-Known Member

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    [​IMG]

    Excel jockeying wasn't much fun.
     
  18. Quadcammer

    Quadcammer Well-Known Member

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    heres an idea that is a bit off the wall, and will pay like total dogshit for a while.

    Have you considered a job at some of the bigger institutional buyers in your area? such as pension funds, government finance operations, hell even university endowment management.

    You will be crunching numbers for dogshit pay, but if you're intelligent and you bust your ass, you may be able to get your name out there and you'll at least have some dealings with the buy side firms.

    Then you may be able to make the jump.

    That said, these firms are either in boston, ny, or california, so michigan is a tough place to start this up.
     
  19. superego

    superego Well-Known Member

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    ...
    Once you start in FA you usually end in FA from what I've seen.


    The bulk of everything you said in response to my post seems reasonable, and it is ultimately your decision to make, except for that statement. My first job out of school was as a glorified FA--I started as a bond broker with a no-name brokerage house. I did it for about 6 months, got my 7 and 63 and hated every fucking minute of it, but I continued looking and found and got about as good a job as I could have even dreamed about at that time. I ultimately went back to grad school and work at a quant fund now. So doing the FA thing isn't a life sentence if you work your way out of it.

    I'm not telling you to take a door to door sales job, but IMO, you've gotta start somewhere and SOME job is better than no job if I'm a potential employer. GL, dude.
     
  20. superego

    superego Well-Known Member

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    Serious question, but does anyone aside from the rainmaker MDs actually like working in finance? It seems like the crappiest industry ever.

    I do.
     

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