Jobs For The Future: Careers In Fintech
Financial technology – also known as ‘fintech’ – is a burgeoning financial industry and subsector that has received significant attention in the last decade. According to Research and Markets, the fintech industry was worth $5504 billion in 2019 and is expected to grow 23.58% by 2025. Key technologies include robo-advisors and AI customer service, as well as blockchain implementation and mobile-first banking and trading.
The fintech industry has been characterized by the modernization of traditional finance companies combined with the rise of industry disruptors, some of the most prolific being Monzo, Starling, Robinhood and Sofi. Older and newer businesses have united in their implementation of fintech products and services, leading to many mergers and acquisitions.
This new sector has opened many new job opportunities in both established global finance giants and start-ups. Fintech requires a blend of traditional client and customer-orientated roles combined with newly developing positions across machine learning, cloud computing, AI and SAAS development.
Here are 4 of the key developing job markets in fintech:
AI-Driven Business Analytics
AI and machine learning algorithms (ML) are driving sophisticated real-time business analytic platforms. Machine learning algorithms are adept at working with vast volumes of numerical data. ML can perform real-time calculations on large datasets to accurately assess risk, optimise financial ledgers and fine-tune business transactions to improve cash flow and create value.
For example, fintech company Avora provides an ‘augmented analytics’ platform which automatically processes financial information to spot anomalies and detect risks before they develop into greater issues. Using predictive analysis, the Avora platform forecasts changes in spending patterns to help businesses take adaptive, proactive action to prevent loss in value or revenue.
This field is driven by data science which has been heralded by Harvard Business Review as one of the fastest developing fields in finance. Demand is currently high for those qualified in data science, data engineering and data analytics.
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Fintech Investment Management
Investing has become highly digitised and customers can now access platforms that allow them to buy, sell and hold investments from one fully integrated app. Robo-advisors play a key role here and can automatically suggest funds for investors looking to build, tune and plan their portfolio.
Fintech-powered investment management pioneers include the likes of Revolut and Robinhood, but older firms like Vanguard and HSBC have also added robo-advisors to their platforms.
Robo-advisor technology uses machine learning to learn from trading data and financial markets. Those with programming skills are in demand to create increasingly accurate and high-performance robo-advisors.
Blockchain technology is fundamental for cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin. Cryptocurrency transactions are ultra-fast, secure and circumvent currency conversion. Thus, more financial services and banks are deploying blockchain transactions into their business models. Major banks are even creating their own blockchains such as JP Morgan Chase’s JPM Coin that went live in 2020.
There are huge opportunities in the commercialization of blockchain and whilst major banks are taking steps to integrate the technology into their business models, there are still many problems to solve. Programmers and developers with experience and knowledge in blockchain are in demand to solve them.
Quantum Computing Technology One of the major issues with machine learning and ever increasingly powerful AI software is the demand it places on IT infrastructure. Enormous resources are required to power advanced machine learning algorithms and quantum computing represents a new horizon in tackling computational problems. Quantum computing was once a fringe concept but huge investment from the likes of Amazon, Google, IBM and Microsoft have catalyzed a number of important technological developments that are seeing quantum computers take shape beyond mere theory. Scalable quantum computing solutions will be able to support advanced AI and ML algorithms. They could be used to detect financial risk and anomalies, e.g. in fraud detection, auto-approve loan and mortgage applications or integrate into automated high-frequency trading bots. There are always new problems to be solved, though, and there is significant demand for all manner of science and data-orientated professionals to get involved in quantum computing and other next-gen technology. The potential for the fintech industry is immense.
Whilst some of these technologies are currently at the cutting-edge or are still in their infancy, these are the types of subjects worth investing in now for the future. As they grow, more professionals will be required with backgrounds in maths, data science, data engineering and programming.
Fintech is not solely about tech, though, and those with traditional financial skills and qualifications are still in demand. Fintech brands and businesses still require those skilled in everything from marketing to sales and management. But financial professionals should also try and recalibrate their knowledge, adding tech skills to their repertoire.
‘J.P. Morgan Creates Digital Coin for Payments’, JP Morgan Chase, https://www.jpmorgan.com/solutions/cib/news/digital-coin-payments
‘Data Scientist: The Sexiest Job of the 21st Century’, Harvard Business Review, https://hbr.org/2012/10/data-scientist-the-sexiest-job-of-the-21st-century
‘Find issues before they impact revenue’, Avora, https://avora.com/
‘Global Fintech Market, by Technology (API; AI; Blockchain; Distributed Computing, Others), Research and Markets, https://www.researchandmarkets.com/reports/5031390/global-fintech-market-by-technology-api-ai?utm_source=GNOM&utm_medium=PressRelease&utm_code=lv63tv&utm_campaign=1481286+-+Global+Fintech+Market+Report+2020-2025+-+Competition%2c+Forecast+%26+Opportunities&utm_exec=chdo54prd