Department of Financial Management & Mortgage Banking
Financial Management Careers

Studying Financial Management can be rewarding and open doors to many different career options. Want to find out more about career possibilities and salaries?

Job Postings

Financial Management Career Paths

There are many rewarding and interesting jobs in Financial Management. Financial Management can lead to many career paths and the following list covers just a few of the possible career choices you can pursue with an associate or a degree in Financial Management.

  • Financial Managers
  • Financial Securities Sales Agents
  • Insurance Sales Agents and Underwriters
  • Loan Originating
  • Mortgage Banking
  • Mortgage Brokerage
  • Personal Financial Advisors
  • Property Management
  • Real Estate Brokers
  • Real Estate Finance
  • Real Estate Sales
  • Retail Banking
  • Secondary Marketing
  • Securities and Commodities
  • Warehousing

Job Outlook and Salaries

Salaries and jobs vary widely. According to the U.S. Department of Labor for Financial Analysts and Personal Financial Advisors, Bankers, and Financial Managers, job growth is expected to increase 34 percent between 2006 and 2016, which is also much faster than the average for all occupations spurred by domestic and global competition. Another excellent source for wages and trends in finance is Career One Stop. A good source for pay scales is http://www.payscale.com/.

The following information is from the Occupational Outlook Handbook as listed above. Please click to their website for complete job information.

Work environment

Working in comfortable offices, often close to top managers and to departments that develop the financial data those managers need, financial managers typically have direct access to state-of-the-art computer systems and information services. They commonly work long hours, often up to 50 or 60 per week. Financial managers generally are required to attend meetings of financial and economic associations and may travel to visit subsidiary firms or to meet customers.

Most financial managers need a bachelor's degree, and many have a master's degree or professional certification. Bank managers often have experience as loan officers. Financial managers also need strong interpersonal and business skills.

Education and training

A bachelor's degree in finance, accounting, economics, or business administration is the minimum academic preparation for financial managers. However, many employers now seek graduates with a master's degree, preferably in business administration, economics, finance, or risk management. These academic programs develop analytical skills and teach the latest financial analysis methods and technology.

Experience may be more important than formal education for some financial manager positions — most notably, branch managers in banks. Banks typically fill branch manager positions by promoting experienced loan officers and other professionals who excel at their jobs. Other financial managers may enter the profession through formal management training programs offered by the company. The American Institute of Banking, which is affiliated with the American Bankers Association, sponsors educational and training programs for bank officers at banking schools and educational conferences.

Other qualifications

Candidates for financial management positions need many different skills. Interpersonal skills are important because these jobs involve managing people and working as part of a team to solve problems. Financial managers must have excellent communication skills to explain complex financial data. Because financial managers work extensively with various departments in their firm, a broad understanding of business is essential.

Financial managers should be creative thinkers and problem-solvers, applying their analytical skills to business. They must be comfortable with the latest computer technology. Financial managers must have knowledge of international finance because financial operations are increasingly being affected by the global economy. Proficiency in a foreign language also may be important. In addition, a good knowledge of compliance procedures is essential because of the many recent regulatory changes.

Certification and advancement

Financial managers may broaden their skills and exhibit their competency by attaining professional certification. Many associations offer professional certification programs. For example, the CFA Institute confers the

Chartered Financial Analyst designation on investment professionals who have a bachelor's degree, pass three sequential examinations, and meet work experience requirements. The Association for Financial Professionals confers the Certified Treasury Professional credentials to those who pass a computer-based exam.

As banks expand the range of products and services they offer to include insurance and investment products, branch managers with knowledge in these areas will be needed. As a result, candidates who are licensed to sell insurance or securities will have the most favorable prospects. (See the Handbook statements on insurance sales agents; and securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents.)

Projections Data from the National Employment Matrix
Occupational title SOC Code Employment, 2006 Projected employment, 2016 Change, 2006-16 Detailed statistics
Number Percent
Financial managers 11-3031 506,000 570,000 64,000 13 PDF zipped XLS

NOTE: Data in this table are rounded. See the discussion of the employment projections table in the Handbook introductory chapter on Occupational Information Included in the Handbook.

Employment

The banking industry employed about 1.8 million wage and salary workers in 2006. About 7 out of 10 jobs were in commercial banks; the remainder were concentrated in savings institutions and credit unions.

Table 1. Percent distribution of employment and establishments in banking by detailed industry sector, 2006
Industry segment Employment Establishments
Total 100.0 100.0
 
Monetary authorities - central bank 1.2 0.3
Depository credit intermediation 98.8 99.7
 
Commercial banking 72.5 69.7
Savings institutions 13.1 14.7
Credit unions 12.1 14.2
Other depository credit intermediation 1.2 1.1

In 2006, about 84 percent of establishments in banking employed fewer than 20 workers. However, these small establishments, mostly bank branch offices, employed 36 percent of all employees. About 64 percent of the jobs were in establishments with 20 or more workers. Banks are found everywhere in the United States, but most bank employees work in heavily populated States such as New York, California, Illinois, Pennsylvania, and Texas.

Occupations in the Industry

Banks employ various types of financial and customer service occupations. Tellers make up the largest number of workers, and overall office and administrative

Table 2. Employment of wage and salary workers in banking by occupation,
2006 and projected change, 2006-2016. (Employment in thousands)
Occupations Employment 2006 Percent change, 2006-16
Number Percent
All occupations 1,825 100.0 4.0
 
Management, business, and financial occupations 449 24.6 5.4
General and operations managers 34 1.8 -8.4
Marketing and sales managers 11 0.6 1.9
Financial managers 73 4.0 1.9
Human resources, training, and labor relations specialists 15 0.8 5.3
Management analysts 8 0.5 1.4
Accountants and auditors 27 1.5 1.7
Credit analysts 15 0.8 -8.3
Financial analysts 18 1.0 11.4
Personal financial advisors 24 1.3 22.3
Loan officers 133 7.3 12.1
 
Professional and related occupations 72 4.0 6.9
Computer specialists 56 3.0 8.8
 
Sales and related occupations 82 4.5 11.8
Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents 50 2.7 17.2
 
Office and administrative support occupations 1,202 65.9 2.9
First-line supervisors/managers of office and administrative support workers 111 6.1 -5.2
Bookkeeping, accounting, and auditing clerks 63 3.5 1.7
Tellers 546 29.9 12.1
Brokerage clerks 9 0.5 -1.0
Customer service representatives 106 5.8 12.0
New accounts clerks 73 4.0 -18.4
Receptionists and information clerks 9 0.5 1.5
Couriers and messengers 6 0.3 -8.3
Executive secretaries and administrative assistants 36 2.0 1.9
Secretaries, except legal, medical, and executive 15 0.8 -9.6
Data entry keyers 8 0.5 -18.6
Office clerks, general 40 2.2 0.2
Office machine operators, except computer 12 0.6 -14.9

Note: Columns may not add to totals due to omission of occupations with small employment.


Greater responsibilities generally result in a higher salary. Experience, length of service, and, especially, the location and size of the bank also are important. Earnings in the banking industry also vary significantly by occupation. Earnings in the largest occupations in banking appear in table 3.

Table 3. Median hourly earnings of the largest occupations in depository credit intermediation, May 2006
Occupation Depository credit intermediation All industries
General and operations managers $40.89 $40.97
Financial managers 34.89 43.74
Loan officers 23.51 24.89
First-line supervisors/managers of office and administrative support workers 19.66 20.92
Executive secretaries and administrative assistants 18.05 17.90
Loan interviewers and clerks 14.35 14.89
Customer service representatives 13.68 13.62
New accounts clerks 13.60 13.65
Office clerks, general 11.82 11.40
Tellers 10.63 10.64

Occupations

Related Links

Additional Links

More information

Careers and certification in financial management:
Financial Management Association International
College of Business Administration
University of South Florida
Tampa, FL 33620
http://www.fma.org
Careers in financial and treasury management and the Certified Treasury Professional program:
Association for Financial Professionals
7315 Wisconsin Ave., Suite 600 West
Bethesda, MD 20814
http://www.afponline.org
Chartered Financial Analyst program:
CFA Institute
P.O. Box 3668
560 Ray Hunt Dr.
Charlottesville, VA 22903
http://www.cfainstitute.org
The American Institute of Banking and its programs:
American Bankers Association
1120 Connecticut Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20036
Certified in Management Accounting designation:
Institute of Management Accountants
10 Paragon Dr.
Montvale, NJ,07645
http://www.imanet.org