For the past few years, CFA has become a highly sought after course. People from various spheres who are fascinated with finance are trying their hand at this course as it is one of the most acknowledged financial qualifications in the finance domain. Passing every level of CFA requires relentless commitment and hard work. However, in today’s world, everybody wants instantaneous results. Probably after preparing diligently for 6 months or even more for every level, each candidate would’ve asked himself this one question- whether the level, being the first one itself, would land them a good job or not. And why wouldn’t one, as clearing just one level seems like a herculean task. But what I believe is having passed the first level of CFA Exam or even having the CFA Charter will show your commitment and laborious effort but wouldn’t get you a job on its own.
As I mentioned earlier, CFA is a course pursued by individuals from diverse academic backgrounds, be it finance or a non-finance one. When it comes to finding job opportunities, the job opportunities present in the market for a person coming from finance background would be different from the person from a non-finance background.
A person with finance background will get options like that of a Junior Financial Analyst, Risk Consultant, Asset Manager, Associate Analyst, Junior Portfolio Manager and a job in Equity Research. These options involve the application of basic knowledge acquired by the aspirants while preparing for the CFA Level I Exam.
Since a person from a non-finance background has diversified his knowledge in both the financial and an additional domain, he has a wider scope by passing the CFA Level I exam. For instance, a technologist can now move into Finance IT or Investment banking IT roles, which were earlier not accessible to him. IT services employee, after clearing Level I, is more valuable in servicing Financial Services clients such as banks, hedge funds etc. However, it is important to note that as you clear different levels, the job prospects will change accordingly. The higher the level, the better the job opportunities and with the better job comes better salary. It has been noted that with junior roles, the internships, and your interviewing skills matter more than your undergraduate degree but holding an undergraduate degree is important as it is a part of the eligibility criteria for the CFA Exam.
Additionally, many experts suggest that a potential candidate must learn various complimentary skills, for example, good communication skills. With each passing year, the candidates appearing for the exam has been on a rise and with the current boom in the economy, there is no dearth of green pastures. One only needs to be determined enough to conquer. One last thing to keep in mind is that these job opportunities vary from one country to the other. Some countries might have greater availability of jobs and some might not. Even the pay scale varies as you move among various latitudes. But the trick is to keep working hard and conquer what you aim for.