Financial examiners ensure compliance with local, state and federal laws, and about one third of the total is working in a government job. The others typically work for banks or other financial institutions, perhaps dealing with securities and commodities.
While the minimum requirements for starting a career in this field consist of accounting skills and knowledge of financial laws, communication skills are vital, as workers must present reports, communicate with companies, and write to government offices.
Job Outlook for Financial Examiners
This is a high-paying job, with figures between $74,000 and $134,000, and the largest numbers are coming from government positions. There is also growing potential in scientific research and security and commodity exchanges. Much of the growth is regionally based with higher earning potential emerging from Washington D.C., New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and Illinois.
The career outlook for financial examiners is fairly promising, growing at a rate of 20 percent, which is exceeding the average profession. This means 16,000 jobs will be opening up over the next ten years. The two career paths are risk scoping and consumer compliance.
The former is involved in evaluating the health of a company, and to ensure that there is enough capital and balance to sustain operation, and all loans given out are safe. Evaluating the performance of managers may also be a part of the job.
On the other hand, the consumer compliant field will be more involved in monitoring loans and making sure borrowers are not being taken advantage of through predatory loans, and that they can, in fact, pay the loans back over time. Workers will also make sure that discrimination against borrowers is not a factor in determining loan worthiness.
Surviving the Competitive Environment
Naturally, the competition is intense for this field and so most beginners will seek out bachelor’s degree even while gaining experience in clerical jobs, data entry and similar entry-level positions. As they grow with the company, and in knowledge, they are handed over greater responsibility and allowed to hone their investigation skills.
Certification is certainly the way of the present and future, as this helps to set apart qualified examiners capable of following national standards. There are actually a few certifications to reach for, including the title of certified financial examiner, certified financial examiner-financial/ratings analyst, and automated examination specialist.
Financial examiners are being pressured to have a given number of credit hours in accounting. In addition, a background in law, computer software, or economics is certainly an advantage when applying for a position.
Communication skills are vital, but problem solving skills, the ability to think critically, and making judgments quickly are equally valuable. Workers are often called upon to audit businesses and institutions to ensure compliance from day one, and so college degrees and post-secondary accounting hours are scrutinized. Securities experience and CPA status are also pluses.
Now is the time to begin building a career in financial examinations, while the market is growing and while companies are embracing young workers with a solid education.