Financial engineering – the use of mathematical techniques to solve financial problems – is an exciting career for ambitious business school graduates, but the field is constantly evolving.
Large corporations such as Goldman Sachs, Barclays and Spotify are always on the lookout for financial engineers to fill positions including Quantitative Engineer and Program Manager.
For anyone dreaming of a career in financial engineering, you’ll need to build more than just your digital skills to impress employers and stay ahead of the business world.
Here are five skills that could help you succeed when applying for financial engineering jobs, and how a master’s in financial engineering can enhance those skills.
1. Understand advanced math to land financial engineering jobs
It will come as no surprise that those who want to get a job in financial engineering will need to have a solid understanding of advanced math.
Almost any role within financial engineering, including market analyst or financial specialist, will require you to use advanced numerical skills such as statistics and numerical analysis when solving financial problems.
That’s why financial engineering master’s programs should focus on helping students hone their advanced quantitative skills, says Charlie Charoenwong (illustrated), Academic Director of the Year Master of Science in Financial Engineering (MFE) at Nanyang Business School (NBS) at Nanyang Technological University in Singapore.
In the NBS Masters in Financial Engineering, students learn advanced mathematics through courses such as Calculus and Linear Algebra and Linear Financial Models. Both courses allow students to use computer software as they apply their skills to real-world financial problems.
2. Financial engineering requires knowledge of programming theory
In today’s financial world, it is not enough to understand traditional finance and mathematical skills. Graduates of the Master in Financial Engineering must master data modeling and be able to create algorithms using programming languages.
“Python has become very popular in the financial industry over the past five years,” says Charlie.
The NBS MFE degree integrates programming languages like Python and C++ into the curriculum to equip students for future jobs in financial engineering.
NBS also hosts a series of lectures, where industry professionals are invited to explain real-life examples of how programming languages are used to represent complex data and what working in financial engineering is like.
Students can dig deeper into industry trends by taking electives on topics like machine learning.
Lily: Why do a master’s in financial engineering?
© Nanyang Business School
3. Financial engineering employers want strong presentation and communication skills
It’s great to be armed with the technical expertise that financial engineering jobs demand, but you’ll also need those essential soft skills to impress employers.
“We’ve found in conversations with hiring managers that verbal and written communication skills are something they look for in their hires,” says Min Chan (pictured), graduate career development manager at the ‘IN B.
To help students learn how to better position themselves and present their ideas, the NBS Graduate Career Development Office runs workshops on networking, personal branding and storytelling. The careers team also organizes recruitment and alumni events.
“We prepare students for a range of jobs in the financial industry,” says Min Chan (illustrated). These roles can range from risk manager or business analyst to hedge fund manager or business management consultant.
The hands-on, collaborative learning opportunities at NBS allow students to hone their communication and presentation skills. For example, in the trading simulation competition, students can create and present an investment product.
The MFE program also offers students the opportunity to participate in an exchange with the program’s partner, Carnegie Mellon University in the United States, which provides the opportunity to network with American students and employers.
4. Critical Thinking and Analytical Skills Are Essential for Financial Engineering Careers
Professionals in demanding financial engineering jobs need to confidently identify patterns within large datasets.
Critical thinking skills are therefore crucial in identifying financial problems and providing effective solutions, Charlie explains. “In a dynamic market, it is important to effectively make smart decisions based on data. Otherwise, opportunities can slip through the gaps.
In NBS’s Financial Engineering Master’s program, students improve their critical thinking skills through courses such as Trading Analytics & Processes and Financial Risk Management, learning to think outside the box when modeling financial and related risks. Trade.
5. Stay ahead of technology trends to set yourself apart from financial engineering employers
Staying ahead of evolving technology and digital trends is essential for those looking to launch a high-flying financial engineering career.
“Areas such as crypto/digital currencies have implications for financial engineering as they can reduce processing times,” Charlie explains.
The MFE program offers a course in Programming Web Languages in Finance, Charlie explains, which covers how Bitcoin and Blockchain work. This course could be useful for those looking to work in banking or security.
There are also areas like quantum computing to consider too. “The blazing speed of computing provided by quantum computers will revolutionize the computation that is at the heart of financial engineering applications,” adds Charlie.
To help students keep abreast of these trends, the NBS regularly invites experts in the field of quantum computing to speak to Masters of Financial Engineering students about this growing field.
A specialized master’s degree can help you land jobs in financial engineering because it gives you the opportunity to hone those skills and connect with industry leaders at networking events.