Focus on financial & related services
Essex is becoming one of the biggest financial districts in the UK. Essex is a part of the London-Essex finance corridor which is an important extension of London's world-leading financial & professional services cluster. This area include the main Essex financial & professional service centres of Basildon, Brentwood, Chelmsford, Colchester and Southend-on-Sea.
What could I do in finance & Related services
This industry essentially delivers all of our economic services - that does include banking, but that is just one part of the story. From insurance and accountancy services, to investments, pensions or tax, the world of financial & related services is a fast-paced, challenging and exciting industry. Money is important to every person and to every business so there will always be plenty of opportunities in Essex to progress your career. This sector has seen a sharp rise in skills shortages so employers are looking for fresh talent who have a passion for finance.
You will probably find yourself working in the company's office, but many companies have multiple branches in different cities and countries all over the world, so Essex isn't the limit for a career in finance.
- 'It's all about working in banks' - Banks are an important part of the sector, but there is so much more to this industry: accountancy, insurance, investment and pensions are just a few examples.
- 'I don't want to work in an office all the time' - The sector offers a great range of flexible and home-based opportunities to support different working patterns and requirements.
Top skills employers are looking for
- Bank Reconciliation
- VAT Returns
- Invoive Processing
- Key Performance Indicators
- Budget Forecasting
Top jobs advertised in Essex
- Accountancy Assistant
- Account Manager
- Credit Controller
- Credit Controller
- Pensions Assistant
Financial & related services: the numbers
Example job roles:
Example entry job roles:
This sector offers a lot of diverse roles and many entry level jobs that don’t always have set qualification requirements, but you’ll typically need up to 5 GCSEs or equivalent at grades 9 to 4 (A* to C) including maths and English.
Data Entry Clerk: £12k - £25k+ Data entry clerks and typists use keyboard skills to enter information into databases and systems and create letters, reports and other documents. Office experience could also help you get a job. You will need IT skills, typing accuracy and speed and time management skills. You may need to handle customer databases or process invoices frequently.
Accounting Technician: £18k - £30k+ Accounting technicians handle day-to-day financial matters in all types of business. You could start as an accounts clerk or bookkeeper while you study to become an accounting technician. You could work for a wide range of companies or you could work in the public sector. Day-to-day tasks may include: processing and paying invoices; recording receipts and payments; preparing and checking ledger balances and completing and submitting tax returns.
Bookkeeper: £17k - £25k+ Bookkeepers keep financial records up to date and help prepare accounts. Your day-to-day duties could include: dealing with sales invoices, income, receipts and payments; handling commercially sensitive and valuable information; helping to prepare annual accounts; completing VAT returns and using computerised accounting systems.
Further job roles:
At this level, qualifications are often important in proving how competent you are with company finances. However, experience is also valuable in getting some of these higher-skilled jobs too.
Pensions Manager: £22k - £40k+ Pensions Managers work with in-company or private pension schemes to make sure they are properly run. You’ll need a background in pensions or finance work, and a qualification in pensions, insurance or accountancy that meets industry regulatory standards. You could also start as a trainee Pensions Manager or a Pensions Administrator and work your way up on a management training scheme.
Actuary: £30k - £50k+ Actuaries work with companies and government departments, to help them forecast long-term financial costs and investment risks. You’ll need to study for professional exams to become an Actuary. The skills you will need include; skills in maths and statistics, the ability to research and analyse and interpret data. You could work in life assurance, insurance or pensions, designing policies or consultancy, advising clients on financial risk.
Auditor: £25k - £50k+ Internal and External Auditors check an organisation’s financial records and procedures, to make sure they’re accurate and efficient. To be an External Auditor, you’ll need to be a qualified chartered accountant. To become an Internal Auditor, you don’t have to have to be an accountant, although it may help in certain jobs. Experience in finance, banking, HR or management can also be helpful. Skills you will need; the ability to interpret figures and information; strong analytical and problem-solving ability; accuracy and attention to detail.
What qualifications do I need to get into finance?
A variety of finance qualifications are available to those hoping to embark on a career in finance - some of the most popular qualifications are listed below, but many companies will help you get the training you need and work towards a professional certification too.
AAT (Association of Accounting Technicians) accounting courses - made up of three qualifications across three levels, they combine industry knowledge and practical skills.
ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) qualifications - comprised of two levels; Fundamentals and Professionals. Modules cover a variety of topics from corporate and business law to audit and insurance.
ICAEW (Insitute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) chartered accountant status - also referred to as the ACA, this qualification consists of three to five years of practical work and the completion of 13 modules.
CIMA (Chartered Institute of Management Accountants) business finance award - oversees the widely recognised CGMA (Chartered Global Management Accountant) requires you to have already gained the post-graduate level Certificate in Business Accounting.
If you think this sector might be for you - you can learn even more on websites like: www.discoverrisk.co.uk or www.cisi.org/getinitofinance. Remember that you can always try contacting companies directly. If they don't have any roles available at the moment, they may ask to keep your details so that they can send you any other opportunities that might come up in the near future.
How do I get into finance?
Not sure what your next steps are?
You can learn a lot about the financial & related services sector on this page, but for more information and advice, take a look at the Target Careers page on finance.
Want to know what it's like on the job?
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