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How to Become a Credit Risk Officer

Career News June 9, 2014

If you take orders well, and have the capacity to think independently and set an example in team performance, then the credit risk officer may be just the career for you.

A credit risk officer is a professional designated to evaluate an applicant’s risk and determine whether the loan goes through while following the guidelines set forth by the credit risk analyst. The credit risk officer’s work is to help the credit risk analyst and department team avoid losses by rejecting loans that are likely to go into default. Even in the event that the loan is made, credit risk will determine the amount of the loan given.

Although this is a supportive role, these professionals can earn upwards of $60,000 per year, at least according to averages compiled by Certified Compensation Professionals.

Education and Work Experience Needed

A bachelor’s degree is the best educational pursuit for you in advance of on-the-job training. Working as a credit officer, you will assist your team by providing review and evaluation of each loan, taking into account what the team leader says. This requires a formal education in finance and credit. Work experience is also worth pursuing, as you can build a strong resume by only working in a related field for a few years (usually not beyond three).

The primary reason for these requirements is that officers are expected to retain a good sense of operations, how activities are handled on a daily basis, how to serve borrowers best and follow the lead of management. This professional setting teaches a new applicant about company culture, how to accomplish goals, and standards of the industry. Although the officer does work under a supervisor’s direction, he or she will show promising creativity and open-mindedness, especially when negotiating with applicants.

The Job

Although you are starting under management, you still have hefty responsibilities. These include credit risk reporting, interacting with superiors, and reviewing strategic positions along with your manager. As a team, you will assess changes, report credit limit excesses, make sure all systems are up to date, report all significant risks, and learn how to conduct stress and scenario testing of your portfolio. It is the work of your department to understand business risk, default, and what makes the business change.

To some extent, you will be relying on credit reports and applicant information to make a decision. Some decisions will be easy based on credit history, uncertain financial information and other critical issues. Others will need careful market evaluation since the details and variables need reconciliation.

This is a career field that pays well, and that is an important part of modern business. You will protect your company’s assets, but you will also make the dreams of borrowers come true, giving them the resources they need to finish the mission. It is a challenging assignment but one with many benefits.

Talk to UMCP or any schools listed below about your training and determine if you’re going to move up in the business world!

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