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Where do I start?... for a career in Investment banking technology

Posted on 22/07/2015 by

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Fear Not! Job hunting for the newly graduated need not be the daunting task of by gone years with the Mthree Alumni programme bucking the trend on graduate employment. Technology graduates form part of a  cohort of uniquely-skilled and highly in-demand options for employers looking to bolster their organisations - a cohort which the finance industry is keen to attract.

Technology is a fundamental feature of every area of business in investment banking; from trading, risk, sales, operations, finance, as well as the ever-changing regulatory aspects. This gives ambitious graduates a wide range of attractive business areas in which to apply their technical aptitude. Banks are naturally heavy investors when it comes to their technology projects, allowing graduates to work on projects which are business critical in nature.

But I don’t know anything about banking?

So you’re a technology graduate, and have decided you want to work in the fast-paced, competitive and rewarding environment of investment banking technology. However, when asked about what an Investment Bank does, your response is... 'they invest in stuff?' Don't let your lack of knowledge about how an Investment Bank functions discourage you from applying yourself to this industry. Technology teams in banks take on graduates with varying knowledge of the sector and will be looking more intently on acquiring your technical ability.

https://media.licdn.com/mpr/mpr/AAEAAQAAAAAAAAL2AAAAJDBkNTMwZmM0LWRiZDgtNDUwZi1iOGU2LTE3OGY2YzYwZGQyOQ.jpgIt’s crucial that this doesn’t put you off; instead use it to gain an advantage on the competition. Invest some of your time learning about the structure of investment banks and where your position fits in. This will show your potential manager that you are willing to put the extra work in, and portrays a qualified interest in the sector. 

 

How do I choose which Company?

Choosing a company that suits you is essential, and being a graduate you should not only want to work for a company that values you, but INVESTS in you. In a recent article in the Evening Standard, Niki Chesworth outlined that in a current survey, only 72 per cent of graduates were offered the opportunity of formal training in their first job out of university - a reality which forces two-thirds of graduates to think they will have to return to university for further study.

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However, of those 72 per cent, not every graduate will have the same training requirements, therefore why would you train in exactly the same way? This is a differing approach from programmes who front load graduates with a non-paid 6 week training course. When dealing with varying abilities every graduate should be treated as an individual, and your training should be tailored as such. Choosing a company that merits this philosophy is particularly difficult as many have brought into the cheaper and less beneficial front-loading approach.

 

How do I decide which area to apply for?

The next stage is to decide what sort of career you want to pursue. At this point, investing time into research is a key part of the process. Read about what sort of areas are available, whether it be; development, application support or being part of a project management team. It is essential to understand your own strengths and weaknesses, and how your experience is applicable to the role you have chosen.

If you choose software development, have you done a technical degree? Did it incorporate Object Orientated Programming? Can you show a passion for development outside of academia (e.g. Git Hub)?

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If you feel application support is a better fit, then does your degree demonstrate you have problem solving skills? Can you display that you have an interest in working with technology? These types of questions will help you to define the area that best suits your current skills and ambitions.

 

What graduate scheme structure will suit me?

There has been much debate with regards to the benefit for technology graduates on in-house schemes. Admittedly, the 6 month or 3 month rotations do provide an overall understanding of many different areas in the bank. However some of our clients have argued that experience in essential areas can be diluted on such schemes. Hiring Managers have more often than not favoured programmes that allow a single placement, allowing timely integration into the team with little disruption. This has shown an increased trust in these graduates, with many providing valuable contributions and taking project lead roles in the early stages of their career.

 

What does the Mthree Alumni programme offer you that others can’t?

The Mthree Alumni programme has graduate Associates on site at numerous major investment banking clients such as; RBS, HSBC, ICBC Standard Bank etc. The Mthree Alumni programme is a 2 year placement within a team that suits your ambitions and personality. Unlike other programmes you will be paid from your first day and be earning a market-leading salary, which will reflect the learning curve that you experience. As an Alumni Consultant you will be entitled to a bespoke core hours training regime which is funded by Mthree as an investment into your future.

https://media.licdn.com/mpr/mpr/AAEAAQAAAAAAAAItAAAAJDc4Yzk1MjcyLTk1ODgtNDAxMS05YmQzLTA1NmY1ZWE4ZWQ5Yg.jpgWe understand that all work and no play, makes an Alumni a dull consultant. Therefore, we put on regular social events to get our Alumni enjoying themselves. Such as running in the JP Morgan Corporate Challenge and this July we are taking all our graduates to Newmarket Races for an all-expenses paid trip - a chance for our Alumni Associates to enjoy the fruits of their labour, as they push the expectations of the most exciting junior talent programme in investment banking.

 

 

https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/where-do-i-start-career-investment-banking-technology-fotheringham

Written by Matthew Fotheringham

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