Impacted by the digital revolution, the world of finance has deeply evolved these past 20 years and is changing faster than ever before. Reduction of storage costs and the explosion of computing power have made possible finance applications that a decade ago, people only dreamed about. In this fast and complex environment, banks are in strategic need of recruiting young talents with skills that were not necessarily associated with finance in the past. Choosing to prepare for some of the key positions of tomorrow means you will be sought after by top banks when entering the professional world at the end of your studies.
Here are 3 career paths that will be key for employment with the banks of tomorrow:
Blockchain is the technology that was introduced by the Bitcoin. It was originally designed as a decentralized digital currency. The key behind blockchain technology is that it allows reliable transactions of value between several parties without the need for a central authority. The potential applications to the banking industry are still uncertain. We could see it replace the current system for transferring money between local and global banking entities. The strengths of such a peer-to-peer system could also be used to propagate, between financial institutions, details on each economic agent.That would allow a bank to know very quickly if a particular client can be trusted, and thus greatly reducing compliance costs.
One thing is certain however, this technology will have a huge impact on the industry in the decades to come. Most major banks have invested in research on this technology. As Simon McNamara from RBS has said “I don’t know what’s going to succeed. What I’m certain of is that we are going to see blockchain solutions and peer-to-peer solutions emerging in our industry and we want to be close to that development.” Blockchain specialists will have a strong interest in both computer science and economy.
This one may be the most obvious. Banks are already recruiting loads of data scientists, and giving them some of the best paid positions in the industry. However, this is only the beginning of the revolution. As the algorithms get more and more sophisticated, the mission of computers will slowly move from applying a strategy to finding strategies by surfing huge amount of data.
Data scientists will design systems that will explore huge databases containing all kinds of data; historical prices, news, and even personal information on clients.; All of which will uncover invisible correlations and unknown relations between objects. It will then be able to run a strategy based on these new findings.
Ultimately, banks will have computers that will learn on their own how to make money from a huge compilation of diverse data. The focus of the competition will be to attain the best data and input it into these computers. This will be the application of machine learning to finance.
A data scientist is a specialist in statistics that also has an interest in computer science.
The most experienced bankers will tell you, short term moves in price are explained in part by human psychology. In order to improve their decision-making process, banks will have to take these human parameters into account.Technical analysis can be seen as a precursor of this discipline, its goal being to capture some human behaviors by spotting recurring pattern in historical prices.
However, more recently, academics have taken a more scientific approach to these questions and interest is growing among bankers.
In the near future, banks will most likely be looking for people able to apply psychology and sociology, among other techniques, to the financial markets. Such “financial psychologists” will need to be specialists in human science and economy.