The financial services sector encompasses organisations that deal with the management of money, including banks, investment banks, insurance companies, credit card companies and stock brokerages. Financial services are the largest market resource within the world, in terms of earnings.

What a typical financial services employer is looking for

  • Good analytical skills
  • Good teamwork abilities
  • Strong communication skills (a lot of the work is client-facing and a fair amount of business is likely to involve creating new clients)
  • Entrepreneurial experience
  • A fair knowledge of finance, markets and banking

One young doctor managed to bluff his way through by taking a month off to read the Financial Times and the Economist extensively, build up a small store of business stories. and prepare himself to talk about a business he admired and an entrepreneur he admired – but it is probably safer if you have a genuine and long standing interest in finance.

Just as in medicine, there are niches for different personality types from the quick thinking, outgoing sales and trading side to the more quantitative, mathematical aspects of wealth management, researching and advising on investment portfolios.

Is medical experience relevant?

It could be relevant: for instance, for research into pharmaceutical companies, or mergers and acquisitions within the pharmaceutical industry.

Otherwise, it is a case of showing how the skills and experience you have gained in your medical training and career, and in your life outside medicine, are transferable and relevant. That probably means researching your potential employer, so you can show how you would fit in.

Points to consider

Salaries are likely to be competitive and performance related (with bonuses depending on how well you, your team and the organisation are doing).  You will probably start, as in medicine, in training posts which give you exposure to different aspects of the business. For instance, at Morgan Stanley you would probably start as a Cross Divisional Analyst, with on the job training and rotation between different parts of the business.   Financial service organisations often operate globally and there may be opportunities to travel or work abroad.

How to apply

Many financial service companies will advertise current vacancies on their websites. The following sites provide useful corporate profiles and job vacancies for financial service organisations:

Further information on graduate careers in general: