IT Professionals / Finance Sector

RS_MCPRS_MCP Senior MemberMember Posts: 352
IT Pro's,

I will be interviewed very soon for an IT position within a global investment company (Finance).

I am trying to do research but have not found much...

Why would an IT professional want to work within the finance sector?

Does anyone have some good reason's...

Many Thanks.



  • HeroPsychoHeroPsycho Senior Member Inactive Imported Users Posts: 1,940
    Because it's not a law firm. :P
    Good luck to all!
  • eMeSeMeS Member Posts: 1,875
    I've been involved in IT in financial services for all but about 2 years of my ~19 in IT, from both the perspective of a direct employee as well as an independent consultant.

    Here are some reasons why someone would want to work in the finance sector:
      Financial companies (especially brokerage and investment firms) employ cutting-edge technology - they have to to keep up with market volume and demands. For example, in 1997 I was involved in projects that were developing with Java in support of an operational environement. In 1999 I worked on a project that replaced a legacy electronic data interchange with XML.
      Working in financial services can often be a lead-in to more lucrative careers (such as sales of financial services, if you're so inclined)
      Some financial services companies have reputations for requiring employees to meet high standards. In the US this includes not only knowledge and experience, but significant background checks (a little less stringent than DoD) and a commitment to integrity. Because of these things, experience with financial services companies (especially if they have strong brand recognition) is one of the best things you can have on your resume. Of course, this could backfire as well (e.g., although not technically in financial services who would want to put "Accountant at Enron" on their resume?)
      The finance sector doesn't exist without IT. This can often be seen in the salaries of IT people in the financial industry, but all companies differ in this area. You will know that the work that you do contributes to a result that is important to the company and its customers. Either that, or the work that you're doing won't be around very long!

    Some reasons why you might not want to work in the finance sector include:
      Politics - All organizations are political, but some of the nastiest politics I have witnessed and participated in have been in financial services companies. Oddly, my experience outside of financial services has been much less dramatic. In financial services, I have been involved in roles where my job was much more about being a politician than doing anything technical.
      IT in financial services companies is almost always a cost center. IT doesn't generate a profit and therefore holds less status than parts of the organization that do generate money. IT budgets are often the first place to take cuts in financial services companies.
      Potential for Impact due to Mistakes - Because you are often dealing directly with systems that detail different aspects of assets, the potential impact of mistakes can be overwhelming. I knew a guy once in the mid-1990's who made a simple mistake in a one line command in his IT job at a large financial services company. That mistake resulted in incorrect mutual fund prices being delivered to trust houses, and ultimately reported to news organizations. The ultimate result of that mistake was that it cost the company ~$120 million. This amount included fines and other direct costs and some indirect costs, and is not an exaggeration. This error was ultimately reported in the Wall Street Journal. Sadly, this is not the only such costly error that I have witnessed....some people do not want that kind of stress in their lives.

    These are the things that come to mind right now...

  • RS_MCPRS_MCP Senior Member Member Posts: 352
    Thank you for all your help!

    Much appreciated! :)
  • remerolleremerolle Member Member Posts: 72 ■■■□□□□□□□
    Morgan Stanley loves to push that they currently have 3-4 billion IT budget for this year. Through my work in another global Finance firm, finance and IT go hand in hand. Depending on the company, if they take a hit you could easily be let go since like with the rest of IT you are not a money maker. But if you can prove yourself to be multifaceted, a hard worker, personable, and working to within a more essential sector of IT within the firm, you will no doubt find success for years to come there. I was worried about my job since well the company I start with this summer took a few big hits over the past year. Like any company there are periods of ups and downs, but often you go through these periods in a substantially quicker pace. For example in the US with the market issues we have experienced, the Investment Banks and Wealth Management firms felt the hit the first and the hardest, but should be recovering from it all quite quickly. The retail banks will be gradually be hit over time. Either or can be good or bad depending on the environment.
  • AlexMRAlexMR Senior Member Member Posts: 275
    A very good friend of my father works in a big financial company in US and the IT pro who's making less money in his team is making 125+K/year. They are Cisco and Oracle guys mostly.

    I was talking to him last year when i visited NYC and he told me they werent specially well paid. He told me about a few salaries that makes me think that one of the best reasons to get into one of those companies' IT team is the great salaries/rewards.
    Training/Studying for....CCNP (BSCI) and some MS.
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