How financial services companies recruit their staff

Thinking of getting into the financial sector and wondering how the recruitment process works, but not sure how? Whether you are looking to work for guarantor lenders, investment bank or big shot accountancy firm. It may be the case that a business needs an interim candidate for a high powered position or head of department and this for example, will throw up different challenges to a company looking for a fresh graduate candidate (source: Interim Partners).

Well, you’ve come to the right place. We take a look at the various ways in which financial services recruit their staff, so you can give yourself the very best chance of getting a position.

Who are the main graduate financial employees in the UK?

In the UK, the top financial services and accountancy firms are considered to be:

  • PwC
  • KPMG
  • EY
  • Deloitte

When it comes to investment banking, top companies include:

  • The Goldman Sachs Group
  • Morgan Stanley
  • Citigroup
  • Barclays Investment Bank
  • J.P. Morgan
  • Deutsche Bank

The vetting process

Recruitment in the financial industry can differ to other types of skilled employment. The vetting process, for example, is one of the main ways the financial sector is different (source: BrightPool).

Generally speaking, when you apply for a job, you submit a CV, possibly an application form too, and then if you have been successful, the next stage that usually follows is possibly having a phone or face-to-face interview.  Whilst this process can undeniably pose stress for the applicant, the general job applying process is fairly simple and straightforward. Similarly, this applies to the employer too, who will usually decide whether you are the right person for the position based on factors such as the skills that you already have, and your performance in an interview.

However, when it comes to the financial sector this can differ. If you are applying for a ole where you will need to handle third-party financial transactions or handle money, it is a governmental regulation that you must undergo a vetting process.

Usually, this means that you will need a clear credit history in order to pass the vetting process and secure a position. This means having a positive credit score in order to be successful. Otherwise, it is more than likely that your job application will almost certainly automatically be rejected if you have a negative score, regardless of all the skills or potential value you would add to the business.

There are other rigid regulations to take account

For the banking and financial services markets, there are also other regulations that need to be taken into consideration when it comes to the recruitment process in the sector.  The considerable amount of external intervention, as well as looming Brexit negotiations, means that securing excellent candidates is becoming increasingly difficult due to the prospect of upheaval.

Completing psychometric tests

Across Europe, completing psychometric tests as part of the application process in the finance sector has been extremely important. These are used by recruiters to help identify a potential candidates knowledge, personality and skill set. These tests are often carried out in the screening stage, or as part of an assessment centre.  There are two types of testing when it comes to psychometric tests. The first type is personality based. There are lots of variations of this sort of exam – such as the Myers- Briggs Type Indicator (MBTI)  or the Occupational Personality Questionnaire (OPQ). more often than not, the financial sector relies more heavily on ‘aptitude tests’. This refers to questions relating to your cognitive ability, and assesses the following:

  • Verbal reasoning
  • Numerical reasoning
  • Error checking
  • Diagrammatic reasoning
  • Spatial reasoning

These tests will usually take place under exam conditions in an assessment centre (or online) and you will usually need to achieve a certain score in order to move onto the next stage. It is possible to do practice tests in advance – online there are often variations of these tests available.

Vocational finance qualifications are important

Whilst many of the largest financial services in the UK offer both work placements and graduate schemes (with usually a requirement of a 2:1 or a certain number of UCAS points) it is also important to note the special financial qualifications can be viewed by some employers as far more important than a degree.

However, some schemes will offer you the opportunity to study for a qualification whilst having a contract with them. For example, certain accountancy employers will offer the opportunity of getting a recognised qualification with the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) whilst also being a part of their graduate scheme.

Other qualifications you can get in the financial sector include becoming a mortgage adviser, which requires having a CeMap qualification, or if you become a Financial Adviser you will usually be required to work towards a level 4 qualification. This is a huge advantage of working in the financial services, as you can not only build on the skillset you already possess but acquire new skills too.

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<strong>What is Our Criteria For Applying?</strong> 
Every lender on our website has their own specific criteria by the basics are mentioned below and you must have a guarantor to be eligible. Simply select the lender of your choice and you will be taken directly to their website where you can apply. You will be required to submit your details including:<li style=”text-align: center;” data-mce-style=”text-align: center;”>Name (must be over 18 as the borrow, 21 or 25 as the guarantor)</li><br /><li style=”text-align: center;” data-mce-style=”text-align: center;”>Residence (your chances will improve if your guarantor is a homeowner)</li><br /><li style=”text-align: center;” data-mce-style=”text-align: center;”>Employment status (must be employed or on a pension)</li><br /><li style=”text-align: center;” data-mce-style=”text-align: center;”>Income (earning at least £600 per month and able to make repayments)</li><br /><li style=”text-align: center;” data-mce-style=”text-align: center;”>Monthly expenses (not have too many loans open or in major debt)</li>
You will then be asked to include the details of your guarantor and as mentioned above, this is usually someone who you know and trust and wants to help you with your personal finances. Ideally, a guarantor with good credit will maximise your chances of being approved based on the idea of ‘if someone with good credit trusts you, well we can too.'<strong>How Much Can I Borrow From Guarantor Loans?</strong>Guarantor Loans gives applicants the chance to borrow £500 to £15,000 depending on the lender. Some lenders we feature like Buddy Loans only have a maximum loan value of £7,500 and TFS Loans is the only lender that stretches up to £15,000.Factors that can influence the amount you can borrow revolve around having a good guarantor. One that is a homeowner, with solid employment, income and good credit rating will maximise your chances of borrowing the largest drawdown possible.The lenders featured on Guarantor Loans see a homeowner as someone who has already gone through the rigorous process of credit checking and affordability and if they can afford a house, they should be able to act as a guarantor for you.By comparison, having a guarantor that is not a homeowner offers slightly less security and means that amount you can borrow is slightly less too.Higher amounts may be available to those who already have a better than average credit rating, are homeowners themselves and a repeat customer with the lender who has already paid their loan on time. To apply directly with your lender of choice see <a href=”” data-mce-href=””>direct lenders</a>.<strong>What Does The Guarantor Have To Do?</strong>Upon completing an application, the lender will typically send you a <a href=”” data-mce-href=””>pre-contract loan agreement</a> and SECCI (Standard European Consumer Credit Information form) which will highlight the terms of your loan. You and your guarantor will be required to review the terms of the loan, including the loan drawdown, fees, repayment dates and responsibilities – and this can be signed via an online verification process using your email and mobile phone.The lender will usually carry out an individual phone call with you and your guarantor to ensure that you both understand the responsibilities and what is required of you – notably that if you cannot make repayment, your guarantor will be required to pay on your behalf. Further to some additional credit and affordability checks, funds can typically be transferred within 24 to 48 hours (or sometimes on the same day).<strong>Are Guarantor Loans Available For Bad Credit Customers?</strong>Yes, even if you have a history of adverse credit, <a href=”” data-mce-href=””>CCJs</a>, bankruptcy or IVAs several years ago, you can still be eligible. The idea is that you are using your guarantor and their financial history to ‘back you up’ and give your loan extra security. However, it is noted that your guarantor should have a good credit score and consent to co-signing your loan agreement.<strong>How Soon Can I Receive Funds?</strong>Guarantor Loans works with lenders that can facilitate funds within 24 to 48 hours of approval, or sometimes on the same day.When your funds are successfully transferred, most lenders working with Guarantor Loans will send the full amount to the guarantor’s debit account first. This is a standard security measure carried out by lenders to ensure that the funds are going to the right person and confirms the involvement of the guarantor. The guarantor usually has a ‘two week cooling off period’ where they can decide to pass on the money to the main borrower or they can change their mind and return the funds with no extra charges.