There’s no doubt that right now the financial services (FS) sector in Ireland is booming and with this comes lots of opportunities not only for those already working in the sector, but also those considering making a move into FS.
Despite what many may think opportunities in financial services are not limited to the traditional roles you might first think of. If you’re about to finish your training contract, are considering your options, thinking about progressing or moving into FS but not really sure where to start then this is the blog for you.
Here, Nicole Eustace ACA, Associate with Barden’s Financial Service Practice, expert in financial services careers and recruitment, and also a qualified accountant, shares some key insights into the world of FS.
Financial Services In Ireland
Dublin’s International Financial Services Centre (IFSC) was set up in the late 1980s and since then, has grown from strength to strength to establish itself as a geographical hub for global financial services business. These FS firms work across areas such as banking, asset financing, insurance, fund management, aircraft leasing and investment management.
Today there are over 450 financial services companies operating from Ireland, including 20 of the top 25 global institutions, who provide financial services to every major economy in the world.
Opportunities for Qualified Accountants
FS provides Qualified Accountants with a vast array of opportunities. First off it’s worth considering the size of the organisation you’d like to join. FS offers options to join large companies or boutique firms across asset management, banking, insurance, stockbrokers or investments.
Next it’s worth considering the aspect of the business that you’d like to be involved in. It can range from risk and compliance to investment consulting, to analysis and planning, to regulatory and financial planning…to name a few.
It’s always worth remembering that within the FS world there is often:
- Structure and a clear progression path.
- Competitive salaries.
- Project driven work.
- Opportunities working directly with clients and internal teams.
- In many cases international opportunities.
Here are some, but not all, options available for Qualified Accountants…
Risk and Compliance
- Becoming a member of a risk or compliance team exposes you to a variety of opportunities which include developing, implementing and monitoring global and local risk compliance policies and procedures.
- By moving into risk or compliance you become part of the change management within a company and have the opportunity to develop the ability to negotiate and build relationships with senior members of the company.
- In a wide range of risk and compliance jobs you take on an advisory and consulting role, giving you great exposure to the entire organisation itself, as well as external parties, as you advise teams on the potential risks they face.
- Ultimately within this function you would be providing investors with investment products, advice, and/or planning.
- These roles provide you with the opportunity to enhance your knowledge on financial products and processes, along with developing your relationship management skills by working directly with clients.
Regulatory/Financial Reporting/Fund Accounting
- If you are coming from an FS auditing background you’ll know all about this! In this area you will continue growing your skills and form the financial statements for the new auditors to review.
- Are places to gain valuable work experience following your accounting qualification, and a great place to continue studying, often with the possibility of sponsorship for masters.
Middle Office Roles (closer to the client)
- Ultimately these roles enable you to be closer to the client and in essence you will support processes close to revenue generation.
- Mid way between back and front office, therefore you’ll be supporting the front office in communicating with clients, investors and others.
Key accounting skills are sought after within FS and are seen as a big advantage. Fact.
Qualified accountants hold key decision-making positions in large, medium and boutique-sized FS firms. Fact.
In today’s world strong technology and accounting skills are essential. Fact.
Interested in learning more about career opportunities in FS for qualified accountants?
We’re about advice first, jobs second. For the best personalised and objective advice about your professional future, careers in risk and compliance AND for access to the top financial services teams in Ireland, get in touch with Nicole Eustace at email@example.com, and she’ll take it from there.