Banking and Financial Support

Read about careers in banking and financial support, including how much education you'll need to work as a bank teller, finance specialist or loan officer. Find information about earnings and employment for banking and finance professionals, which can help you decide if this is the right field for you.

Is a Banking and Financial Support Career for Me?

Career Overview

Banks are primarily responsible for lending and safeguarding money. There are three types of banks: savings and loan associations, credit unions and commercial banks. These banks operate as both monetary authorities and depository credit intermediaries. Occupations within this field range from office and administrative support to management and financial services positions.

While it's possible to enter the banking and finance industry with only a high school diploma, higher-level positions may require some type of postsecondary education. In addition, some banks may offer education and training opportunities within the branch.

Career Options

A high school diploma, in combination with basic math and communication skills, may qualify you for a job as a bank teller, financial customer service representative or loan processor. Completion of a college degree program in a relevant field of study might open the door to a position as a budget or credit analyst, financial manager or loan officer. Depending on your education and training, you may also be employed as an auditor. If you're employed as an administrative assistant, you'll most likely work within a large processing facility at a bank's headquarters. Financial services representatives may meet with clients in the evening or on weekends.

Employment and Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), minimal to no change in employment was expected for bank tellers nationwide from 2012-2022; an average growth in jobs was projected for auditors, customer service representatives, financial managers and loan officers during the same period. By comparison, opportunities for financial analysts were expected to grow by a faster-than-average rate, while personal financial advisors can look forward to a much-faster-than-average increase in employment through 2022.

As of May 2013, the mean annual salary for bank tellers was $26,260, while customer service representatives and loan officers earned $33,370 and $71,800 respectively. In the same month, the mean annual salary for an accountant or auditor was $72,500, while financial analysts and managers enjoyed corresponding incomes of $91,620 and $126,660. As of May 2013, the average compensation for personal finance advisors was $99,920 a year (www.bls.gov).

How Can I Work in Banking and Financial Support?

Undergraduate Programs

A Bachelor of Business Administration program or major in finance is usually required to obtain a management position in the banking and finance industry. As an undergraduate, you'll learn how to make investment and financial decisions for an organization while studying international trade and finance, commercial banking and portfolio analysis. In a Bachelor of Science in Finance program, you'll find out how to assess the value of a business, government or individual account and work with securities. As a qualified graduate, you may find a job in commercial and investment banking or financial management.

Graduate Programs

A specialized Master of Science in Management program can also help you prepare for a career as a financial manager. As a graduate student, you'll learn how to analyze financial statements while studying buyout transactions and securities markets. In a Master of Business Administration (MBA) program, you'll have the chance to acquire some advanced communication and leadership skills while becoming acquainted with the professional ethics associated with the financial management industry. You'll also find how to manage a global enterprise, explore the international economy and study private equity. Successful completion of a master's degree program may lead to a career in international business or in the nonprofit sector.

Certification

The Banking Administration Institute offers a professional certification program for future loan officers. You may also be interested in the Certified Mortgage Banker (CMB) credential from the Mortgage Bankers Association (MBA).

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