Have a good head for numbers? Enjoy tracking the ups and downs of the stock market and various other investments? These are the qualities that make a career in financial analysis interesting, challenging, and rewarding. Broadly speaking, someone who chooses a career in financial analysis manages the various aspects of other people’s money. Some analysts work as investment advisors, either on their own or with a brokerage firm. Depending on the wealth and size of their clients, they may manage portfolios worth millions of dollars. Other analysts work for banks or insurance companies, ensuring that even when a loan defaults or a claim is paid, the company maintains a positive cash flow. Still others specialize in mergers and acquisitions, determining the profitability of two companies combining their forces in a merger or one company buying another company in an acquisition.
Purchasing managers (along with buyers and purchasing agents) buy products for organizations to use or resell. They evaluate suppliers, negotiate contracts, and review product quality. Most work full time. Many work more than 40 hours per week.
Insurance sales agents help insurance companies generate new business by contacting potential customers and selling one or more types of insurance. An agent explains various insurance policies and helps clients choose plans that suit them. Although most insurance sales agents work for insurance brokerages selling the policies of several companies, some work directly for a single insurance company.
A fraud analyst is someone who investigates forgery and theft within customers’ accounts and transactions on behalf of a bank or a financial institution. They track and monitor the bank’s transactions and activity that comes through the bank’s customers’ accounts. It is their job to identify and trace any suspicious or high-risk transactions, and determine if there is improper activity involved and if there is risk to the bank or its customers. They must conduct and lead investigations into any potential fraudulent activity up to their natural conclusion. Working as a fraud analyst requires an eye for detail and an inquisitive mind. Individuals in these positions must be able to investigate fraud cases from beginning to end and dissect the nature of potential crimes. It is hard work, as it takes a lot of training to be able to succeed in this role.
Credit analysts, also known as financial analysts in the business world, play a very important role in the health of the economy. Credit makes the entire modern economy function from day to day. Without the objective recommendations of financial analysts, banks and insurers would not be able to extend lines of credit to businesses or individuals seeking loans for homes, cars and occasionally employee payrolls as well. Assessing many different risk factors encompasses collecting a large amount of financial information. Credit analysts compile these financial records and make wise recommendations on whether or not to extend credit. Objective financial analysis is the hallmark quality of successful credit analysts, particularly analysts employed at large global financial institutions. Credit analysts combine the intricacies of financial statements with current financial market conditions. Given the instability in the global economy as a whole, opportunities for employment as a credit analyst are in very high demand as companies large and small look for ways to remain profitable. Providing companies and investors with the financial analysis necessary to make shrewd business choices gives credit analysts ample opportunity to earn very lucrative performance-based bonuses as a result.
Advertising sales agents sell advertising space to businesses and individuals. They contact potential clients, make sales presentations, and maintain client accounts. They often work under pressure to meet sales quotas. They work in a range of industries, including advertising agencies, radio, television and internet publishing.
Industrial production managers oversee the daily operations of manufacturing and related plants. They coordinate, plan, and direct the activities used to create a wide range of goods, such as cars, computer equipment, or paper products. Almost 80% of industrial production managers work in manufacturing industries.
Sales managers direct organizations' sales teams. They set sales goals, analyze data, and develop training programs for the organization’s sales representatives. Sales managers are often required to travel. Most sales managers work full time, and long hours, including evenings and weekends, are common.
A financial quantitative analyst will provide guidance to businesses and individuals making investment decisions. They assess the performance of stocks, bonds, and other types of investments.
Auditors prepare and examine financial records. They ensure that financial records are accurate and that taxes are paid properly and on time. They assess financial operations and work to help ensure that organizations run efficiently.
A supply chain manager is a manager who is responsible for the management of equipment, hardware, and other logistical details of a company or a company’s division. It is their job to manage all of the steps needed to purchase raw materials; deliver it to various points throughout the business; ensure that the company makes enough of its product to meet customer demand; and deliver the output to the right destinations on time. Such managers must be responsible for every step along the way, from raw material to finished product. If they does their job properly, there will not be much fanfare since everything is going as expected. However, if they are not able to capably do the job, the effects will be felt all throughout a company, from salesmen to customer service people to any types of field service personnel. Supply chain managers have typically not been regarded as one of the more glamorous management positions. However, they occupy an important role in a firm’s overall management and strategy. Indeed, with technology advances in recent years they have become much more important and much more valued - and as a result, much better compensated than in the past.
Lodging managers make sure that guests on vacation or business travel have a pleasant experience, while also ensuring that an establishment is run efficiently and profitably.
A bank branch manager is the person responsible for the operation, administration, marketing, training, lending and security of a local bank branch. At the end of the day, the manager must be able to lead his or her team of tellers, product specialists and other bank officers to provide superior service and profits within the branch. They bear the responsibility for the overall success or failure of the branch, as seen by the bank’s corporate officers in comparison to its other branches and to branches of other banks. Being a bank branch manager is not the sort of position that one can just waltz into directly out of college. In most cases, it requires working one’s way up the ladder within a bank, working through the ranks to eventually ascend into the position.
A securities and commodities broker connects buyers and sellers in financial markets. They sell securities to individuals, advise companies that are in search of investors, and conduct trades. They work in high stress environments and often work more than 40 hours per week.
Medical and health services managers, also called healthcare executives or healthcare administrators, plan, direct, and coordinate medical and health services. They might manage an entire facility, specialize in managing a specific clinical area or department, or manage a medical practice for a group of physicians. Most work in office settings in healthcare facilities, including hospitals, nursing homes, and group medical practices.
In the wake of growing interest in a green economy and the rejection of fossil fuels, new “green” occupations are growing. A person passionate about the environment is perfectly suited to the management and production of biofuels. Biofuels are alternative fuels extracted from plants or treated municipal and industrial waste, also referred to as biomass. A biofuels production manager is responsible for overseeing the manufacture of biofuels, including facility management, budget implementation, and quality assurance controls. The job entails the ability to work well with others, as well as the ability to supervise and manage people throughout the biofuel manufacturing process.
A biomass power plant manager supervises every aspect of the transformation of waste into useable energy. They keep track of the amount of energy the plant is producing as opposed to how much it uses. Managers also ensure that strict safety protocol is followed and that it is in compliance with federal and regional regulations.
In the simplest terms, this type of vendor is someone that sells food, goods and merchandise on the street or in an open-air market rather than in a traditional storefront setting. The "store" is either a small stand that can be locked and shut down at the end of the night, or a cart that the peddler can move from location to location and take home at the end of the workday. Everyone purchases something from a street peddler at some point in their life - hot dogs, pretzels, meat, vegetables, fruit, cold drinks, flowers, small souvenirs, or mementos from a vacation or trip. Selling food or other merchandise from a cart or stand on the street may seem like a perfect way to earn a living while at the same time owning a small business. Self-employment and the opportunity to set one’s schedule all while being outside may seem like the best job opportunity around. With no building lease costs, overhead of employees, and few bills besides the cost of the merchandise being sold, street peddling appears to be a relatively simple business venture. However, like any other small business, street vending requires time, patience, some upfront costs, strategic planning, basic marketing strategies, and the proper licenses or permits required by the state or area.
Treasurers, also known as financial managers in certain job settings, are experts in finance who directly oversee the long-term and short-term budgetary goals of a business or an organization. Another interchangeable job title used to describe treasurers is financial officer, the preferred term in the corporate business world. In a large corporation the chief financial officer presides over the financial decision making process of the entire company's portfolio of investments and acquisitions. Financial officers ensure that a business or organization stays in good financial health by producing detailed financial statements and coordinating investment decisions. Financial officers also work in tandem with other corporate executives in order to create and meet the quarter-to-quarter budgetary benchmarks as instructed by the chief executive officer. Treasurers used to work to monitor the day-to-day finances of a business, but in the modern era advances in computer software technology have created a shift in the job responsibilities of treasurers. Today, treasurers can focus more of their time on raising capital, coordinating mergers, and deciding on which companies to acquire in order to further the success of a business or organization.
Advertising managers plan and direct the promotional and advertising campaigns of companies in order to generate interest in a product or service. They work with art directors, sales agents, and financial staff members in order to develop and execute these campaigns, and will often act as liaisons between agencies and clients.