How to break into a finance career as an adult

When it comes to business, the path that you choose to follow for a career is key. This will not only inform how happy you are at work but also your salary, contractual benefits, and chances of progressing to more senior levels.

While this is fairly simple if you have a firm idea of your ideal job when young, it can seem harder if you decide on a different career path when older. If you are working in one sector but fancy changing tack to another, it can sometimes seem too challenging. The good news is that with the right foundations in place and some hard work, it is entirely possible.

The finance sector is a great example of this, and it is certainly one that many people enter as adults. 2018 figures from the US government show that over 10 million people work in this sector, so it is certainly popular. With a wide range of varied roles to choose from, great career prospects and decent salaries, finance roles have much to recommend them.

How do you break into this sector as an adult though?

Get the right qualifications in place

Whether you are young or old, the right education and qualifications are vital to breaking into finance. Most financial roles will ask for a certain level of education, such as a bachelor’s degree in relevant subjects such as economics or math. This makes getting the qualification you need for the role you want to break into essential. If you do not currently have the right credentials in place, do not worry – you can still study for them as an adult.

The popular Bryant and Stratton College shows how with its range of courses that can be studied on a part-time or distance-learning basis – check out the college’s LinkedIn feed at for more details. Studying in this way is ideal for adults who may already have a job or have other commitments in the day that would make studying full-time in person a no go.

Learn financial lingo

If you are going to work in finance, then you had better know your terminology. Being able to talk the talk will not only help you come across as someone who knows what they are doing but also help you succeed in your new role. Nothing will present a bigger barrier to your entry into finance than not knowing what common terms or abbreviations mean. Companies will be looking for people who can hit the ground running and not have to spend time in training up on very basic information like this.

Look for an internship

While looking for job vacancies is naturally advised, you should also try to get an internship. This may be hard if you already work another job, but you could take time off to fit in a finance internship for a week or so in this case. Why is this tip worth the effort? Working as an intern will not only look good on your resume but will also give you real-world experience of this industry. Even if you do not carry out your dream finance job, it will give you practical experience to fall back on when you do embark on your new career path.

Make yourself stand out

As above, being able to put things on your resume that make you stand out from others when breaking into financial services is vital. This is especially true as an adult, where you will be up against young guns fresh out of college who may otherwise have the edge on you. Look back at your own personal and employment history to see what you can use to become attractive to potential employers. It is also usually advised to think about becoming accredited by certain financial bodies such as the SIE or CFA to help here.

Finance can be a rewarding industry to work in

There is no doubt that finance is a popular sector that can be a rewarding and exciting place to be. If you think that you would like to break into a financial career when an adult, then the above gives some great tips on how to go about it. Many people only discover their ideal job or passion for a certain role later in life, so you would certainly not be alone. Finance is a competitive industry though, so it is key that you have all you need in place to help you in your efforts. Once you do, your life and work experience should help when combined with everything else to make your new finance career a reality.