A career in finance: Where to start and where it could take you

Career advice, candidate, Finance...

A career in finance administration can be rewarding in many ways. Finance admins serve as the backbone of an organisation, ensuring that every financial transaction runs smoothly and efficiently. From managing budgets and invoices, to reconciling accounts and assisting with financial reporting, you will play a crucial role in maintaining the financial health of the company.

If you are seeking a career that offers stability and growth, finance administration is the perfect choice for you.

Where to start

For many organisations in the finance industry, if you have your GCSEs or equivalent qualifications, you are already well-equipped to enter the world of finance. By starting off in an administrative role, you can become an integral part of any company’s financial operations.

If you are looking to kickstart your finance career, you are probably wondering where to start. Here are a few job titles and their national average salaries:

Finance assistant
*National average salary: £26,106
Finance assistants help to manage a company’s daily financial matters including organising accounting documents and managing company payroll. If you are organised, good with numbers and can work well with others, a Finance Assistant role is perfect for you.

Finance administrator
National average salary: £25,316
Finance administrators carry similar responsibilities to finance assistants. They oversee the financial activities of a business for the accounts of the organisation. They are responsible for any financially related tasks of the organisation.

Payroll clerk
National average salary: £23,859
Payroll clerks are responsible for maintaining payroll information by collating, calculating and entering data. They also tend to manage employee records and are responsible for updating records with changes in employee details or benefit.

Accounts administrator
National average salary: £24,462
Accounts administrators have a crucial role in a company. They are responsible for reviewing and reconciling all company accounts. This includes tasks such as dealing with supplier enquiries, job costing and general admin duties.

*National average salaries from Glassdoor.co.uk

Boost your chances with these skills

Good organisation: With finance administration, you will tend to work with important data and documents including contracts, reports and projections. Staying organised means that when needed, information can be found easily and quickly, which is essential in fast-paced working environments.

Communication: Whether it be written or verbal communication, employers expect you to possess effective communication skills. This will be important when drafting reports, explaining complex financial matters to people who may not be familiar with finance, or simply presenting data in a team meeting. Being a key skill in most career paths, this is also a transferrable skill, meaning it will benefit you wherever you decide to take your career.

Problem-solving: If you can identify problems, brainstorm and analyse answers, then you are a problem-solver. With finance admins being the backbone of a company, being able to identify and solve problems is a key skill and it can help to drive an organisation forward.

IT/Computer skills: In a digital age, having basic to intermediate computer skills is essential in any business. As a finance administrator, you will be working with various software that will require you to have some computer knowledge. This will also ensure accuracy and will help you to stay up to date with industry advancements.

Where it could take you

When looking to progress with your finance career, there are several factors that will help you decide what career path is best for you. What you choose will depend on your interests, qualifications, passions and talents. You should also think about what your salary expectations are and the working patterns you desire.

To help you get an idea of where you could go, here are some senior roles you could progress into.

Finance associate
*National average salary: £41,839
A finance associate is the perfect role to move into if you have worked in finance administration or with accounts. Their role is to prepare and analyse financial information, manage account records and process transactions.

Budget analyst
National average salary: £47,727
If you are talented with numbers, you may want to consider venturing into budget analysis. Budget analysts assist finance departments with their budgets. This includes preparing budget reports, monitoring spending and presenting budget proposals to senior management for approval.

Accounting manager
National average salary: £60,427
On the higher end of the spectrum and with a bit more experience, you may consider going for an accounting manager position. Accounting managers are the overseers of an organisation’s accounts department and are in charge of delegating responsibility to individual accountants.

*National average salaries from Glassdoor.co.uk

If you are ready to start a new finance role, or progress in your current role, Brook Street is here to help. With branches spread throughout the country, we offer numerous job opportunities in the finance sector, available across a range of industries. Our experienced consultants are on hand to match your experience and skillset with the perfect roles.

View all our finance job opportunities and apply for a role today.