Tips for finding your job in the banking sector

Are you sifting between banking jobs posted online, wondering how to secure the best one for you? You know the jobs are out there, and that you have the right qualifications, so how do you go from fantasizing about your next great role to actually landing the offer? Below are some tips that can make that transition possible.

Include the right keywords

If you’re submitting your résumé electronically, be sure to use the precise keywords employers include in their postings for banking jobs. The phrasing that is used in the job description should also appear, when relevant, on your résumé. Often this is simply a matter of rewording your materials, because you might have described a duty one way whereas your prospective employer describes it another. You want to go with how they phrase it.

That way, when your résumé is being reviewed and compared to what was advertised in the job posting, the reviewer will see that you are a great match for the opening. This is especially relevant if your materials are being scanned by a computer, which will be looking more strictly for exact phrases.

Use LinkedIn and Twitter

Remember, we are living in the Digital Age, and you don’t have to be fresh out of college to be expected to have an online presence. Employers understand this when considering candidates for banking jobs. LinkedIn is the popular professional site to create a profile on (if you haven’t already), and career expert Farnoosh Brock advises using it to share your experience with groups.

“Find areas of expertise,” Brock says, “and share your knowledge freely with people that are asking questions. HR and hiring staff browse those professional groups and contact the ideal candidates. It’s your own pre-screening interview!”

Like LinkedIn but a lot more casual, Twitter has become a highly social way to interact with everyone from your favorite celebrity to the hiring managers of hot finance and banking jobs. With respects to this site, Brock says the right hashtags can help get you noticed.

“Use Twitter and the right hashtags to answer questions,” he advises. “Companies are getting more and more into Twitter more to listen than to talk as well as use it like a search engine. Be the answer that pops up when they search the hashtags of your industry and show your expertise with useful tweets.”

Dress to impress at the interview

It might sound superficial, but handling people’s money — often in very large sums — is the name of the game in banking jobs, so it is imperative that you look prepared at first glance. It’s critical that you project trust, respect and confidence when you meet your interview panel face-to-face. They will be looking at you with questions such as, “Would a client trust this person with her money?” floating through their heads. Thankfully, some advanced planning can help you ace this initial evaluation.

You’re not expected to be fashion model, but you need to look professional. Richard S. Deems, Ph.D., author of “Hiring: How to Find and Keep the Best People” (Career Press, 1998), puts it thusly: “Be well dressed and coordinated — in other words, don’t look sloppy and make sure colors are coordinated.”

Be your most organized

“Organize your thoughts — get in the habit of answering a question in sequence,” Deems suggests for your interview. “Example: you will probably be asked, ‘Tell me about yourself.’ Don’t give them a rambling history. Instead, say something like, ‘First, I’m a person who likes things to be organized and in place; let me give you an example… Second, I enjoy showing people how finances can be organized; let me give you an example… Third…,’ another strength and example.

“Most people who hire new employees in the banking industry are well organized, like things to fit together, and appreciate sequences,” says Deems. Because banking jobs are very competitive, candidates who understand this and show it during the interview are likely to be taken more seriously.

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