The modern-day investment banks are well-structured, well-networked, and technologically advanced. Each year, they hire a big pool of young finance graduates from a large number of universities worldwide. An aspirant can make it big in the investment banking industry in a small period of joining it if he has the requisite skills that are valued in contemporary times. And hence, it’s a great career choice for young individuals having a degree in finance or related subject discipline.
Fat Paycheques, But a Hectic Work Life
Investment banks are not the easiest places to be, if you don’t know how to survive among the chaos, or work under extensive pressure. The workdays are usually long, sometimes even stretch to the weekends.
In the words of Andrew Gutmann, an erstwhile investment banker and the author of the book “How to Be an Investment Banker: Recruiting, Interviewing, and Landing the Job”, a quintessential investment banking analyst or associate would work 90-100 hours a week, or sometimes, even more. A usual workday of a banking professional starts at 10 am in the morning and can last up to 2 am in the night.
Handsome Salaries: Although the work is highly demanding at investment banks, after you get to know about the compensation, it will all feel worth it. As per Payscale, an entry-level investment banking professional earns an average yearly salary of USD 78,906 while those having work experience between 1-4 yrs get USD 95,829 yearly in their remunerations.
A mid-career banker would get paid a whopping $122,634 yearly in the US investment banking industry. The income rises further as and when you gain more experience. Aspirants can enroll in industry-relevant investment banking certification programs available online to learn the extensive skillset, the job demands. The benefit with certifications is that you learn banking skills in quick time while investing the least possible, monetarily.
Let’s now discuss in brief the typical career-path of an investment banker.
An Investment Banking Professional’s Career Path
A typical career path of an investment banker starts with becoming an analyst, then after gaining a few years of experience, you become an associate. Some years down the line as an associate, you graduate up to the position of Vice President, and eventually, you reach the top of the hierarchy to become the Managing Director after spending a few years in the industry as Vice President.
Here, we will be discussing all four banking positions, in brief, to let you know about the work profiles associated:
Analyst: These are individuals who have just completed their college, or employees, with no more than 1-2 yrs of work experience. Analysts primarily deal in the collection of data, generating PowerPoint presentations specific to a target company, and analyzing financial data.
Associate: After gaining a work experience of 3-4 years in the investment banking industry, you rise to the level of an associate that puts on you some added responsibilities such as interacting with clients and heading a small team of analysts.
Vice President: When you reach this level, you already happen to be a seasoned investment banker having experience in a variety of banking projects. Key job responsibilities of a Vice President would comprise building and nourishing client relationships and ensuring an optimal operational efficiency from the hierarchies underneath his supervision.
Managing Director: It is the senior most job position at an investment banking firm and takes a minimum of 15-20 years in the industry to level up to this role. A managing director needs to work towards attracting new clients and thereby bringing business to the firm. He has this big responsibility on his shoulders of converting potential opportunities into formal investment deals.
Hope the article will help aspiring bankers gain some vital knowledge about the hierarchical structure in the banking sector, and acquiring a gist of what each job position does while at work.
Best wishes for future endeavors!