Looking for the right time to work on your career plan?
The new financial year presents an ideal opportunity.
Businesses of all shapes and sizes use their results from the previous twelve months to set new goals, start innovative projects, and allocate budgets to the creation of crucial roles.
For people in the finance sector, the start of a new year means an opportunity to work with companies in reaching growing financial targets.
Before you jump head-first into a job search, it’s worth conducting a careful analysis of your current career path, and how it aligns with your long-term professional goals. Here’s how you can review your future and take advantage of this transitional period.
1. Decide What You Want from Your Career
The first step in a successful annual review is figuring out what you want from the year ahead. Look back at the goals you set for yourself last year and ask yourself whether you’re making progress, or whether your priorities have changed. Is the role you hold now still appealing to you, or are you looking for new responsibilities and opportunities?
- Ask yourself what you like and dislike about your current position: If you love your work but feel like you don’t have enough responsibility in your role, then it might be time to look for something more challenging, like a C-Suite or executive account advisor job.
- Review industry trends: Examine what’s happening in the sector around you. The financial space is evolving lately, with the addition of new technology. Would you like to explore a role that combines finance and IT like a digital accountant? Alternatively, do you prefer a more traditional position?
- Don’t get caught up in job titles: As you evaluate your opportunities, don’t let job titles restrict you. You may be a retail banking specialist now, but the skills you’ve built in that space may make you ideal for a financial services role. Look for transferable skill sets.
2. Find Out if Your Employer Will Invest in You
Once you’ve decided where you want your career to go next, it’s time to think about the educational experiences and support that will help you on your journey. Reviewing your job doesn’t have to mean switching roles. Look inside of your organisation for training opportunities, mentorship and guidance that your current employer is willing to offer.
Some businesses will be happy to help their financial stars become the leaders they want to be. If you like the company culture you’re a part of now, discuss your career plans with your manager and see what they suggest.
If the organisation you’re currently with is unwilling or unable to invest in you, then it may be time to work with a specialist recruitment company. They’ll help you to find an employer that will welcome your ambitions and skills.
3. Invest in Yourself
If you’re ready to take the next step in your sector, but you don’t have the right skills to compete as a candidate, it’s time to invest in yourself. Part of creating a successful career plan is moving beyond the passive acceptance of training opportunities, and instead seeking new ones out for yourself.
In an industry as fast-paced as finance, there are plenty of ways you can improve your CV. For instance:
- Work on your soft skills: If you’re looking for a leadership position, and you have the right technical talent, work on your soft skills. Look for opportunities to improve your communication skills or learn agile working methodologies. A mentor in the finance sector can guide you towards becoming a better leader.
- Expand your technical skills: If you’re looking to switch positions to something more technically focused, look for certifications you can earn, or new training opportunities. For instance, if you want to work with a cutting-edge digital banking company, consider exploring things like blockchain technology.
- Stay up-to-date: Remember to stay abreast of the latest changes in the sector. What are the most recent regulations you need to be aware of? How can you show new employers that you’re on the cutting edge of your sector?
Networking is also a great way to invest in yourself. Attend local events and conferences, or work on your LinkedIn profile to build new connections in your industry.
4. Make Career Reviews an Annual Event
Finally, remember to keep an eye on your career plan and make sure that you’re moving in the right direction. Every year, the financial sector continues to evolve, and your ambitions may change with it.
The new financial year presents a fantastic opportunity for you to look at your professional life and determine where you want to go next. Schedule a time at least once a year where you can thoroughly evaluate what you’ve accomplished so far, and which goals you’d like to set going forward.
By making your career review an annual event, you’ll feel more secure in your career choices, and be better prepared to achieve your targets.
JobFitts Consultants are a specialist provider of professional Recruitment Services for the Financial Services sector and related suppliers in Australia. Since 2003 we have recruited and placed a breadth of operational roles at all levels from; HR, Accounting, Marketing and Customer Service/Frontline.