Can anyone give guidance on how to or how they moved from back office to front office? I read different answers to this, just wanted to toss it out there.
There is certainly no cookie-cutter process in which to get from back to the front office. I believe that the most important thing is your ability to network - both within and outside your own company.
- Perseverance 2) Connections: get friends working in middle/front office to keep you updated with internal postings. 3) Networking
hard work too. You have to prove yourself and be a “go to” guy
which part of the “front office” do you wish to penetrate? Is it sales, research, is it buy-side or sell-side?
In 2001 (now i sound like an old guy) i sent out 50 or so hard copy resumes to heads of research departments and heads investment banking groups and then followed up directly with each of them (i by-passed HR departments altogether). It took a long time to develop a targetted list (its probably easier to track down people’s names and titles now with this “interweb” i keep hearing about) - but i targetted a very specific niche and was persistent in bugging these individuals until i got interviews. ultimately it led to a job in equity research. it took about 8 months of banging on doors, cold calling senior people, and basically trying to demonstrate that i would work harder than the next guy. So - what kevin002 said is exactly right: perseverance, connections and networking.
How do you pitch on a cold call? Head: Hello You: Hi, I am a recent college grad searching for xyz jobs. Head: You know, I’m not interested. etc. I’m just curious how to best pitch. I’m thinking of doing this. I used to make hundreds of cold calls a day so I think this would be do-able for me, but I would like some guidance on strategy. Thanks.
topher Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > How do you pitch on a cold call? > > Head: Hello > You: Hi, I am a recent college grad searching for > xyz jobs. > Head: You know, I’m not interested. > etc. > > I’m just curious how to best pitch. I’m thinking > of doing this. I used to make hundreds of cold > calls a day so I think this would be do-able for > me, but I would like some guidance on strategy. > Thanks. 1. Tell him who you are (name, recent college grad) 2. Tell him how you found out his contact info (optional) 3. Tell him what you want (be uber specific and concise - 10 words max) 4. Ask: is this a good time to speak? Be strategic about when you call.
call after the close and say you want 5 minutes of advice from a seasoned pro. make em feel good, this actually works.
apparently not well enough
easy jalmy. you cant be cocky, you failed level 2, dog.
VegasACE Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > In 2001 (now i sound like an old guy) i sent out > 50 or so hard copy resumes to heads of research > departments and heads investment banking groups > and then followed up directly with each of them (i > by-passed HR departments altogether). It took a > long time to develop a targetted list (its > probably easier to track down people’s names and > titles now with this “interweb” i keep hearing > about) - but i targetted a very specific niche and > was persistent in bugging these individuals until > i got interviews. ultimately it led to a job in > equity research. it took about 8 months of > banging on doors, cold calling senior people, and > basically trying to demonstrate that i would work > harder than the next guy. > > So - what kevin002 said is exactly right: > perseverance, connections and networking. Vegas, thanks for posting this. I am in a similar boat and need to do the same. Glad to hear a positive story, despite the drawn out process.
timfindlay - i actually remember one group head saying that they don’t need anyone, but brought me in for an interview because i was so damned persistent. and thats the thing…there will be some people who will be of the mind that if you arent ivy-league educated they won’t talk to you…however, there will be others who will want to talk to eager candidates that can prove that they are willing to go the extra mile, and even if they don’t have an immediate need, smart professionals recognize that turnover happens all the time, so the more qualified candidates they have in the back of their minds the better. also - the more interviews you do and more people you get a chance to speak with will likely lead to other opportunities. as you speak with people they will give up information (“oh, i heard such-and-such bank/fund/department is looking for someone”). again - kevin002 hit nail on the head…perseverance, connections and networking.
daj224 Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > easy jalmy. you cant be cocky, you failed level 2, > dog. Daj … I’ve been following your posts… and your enthusiasm amused some people, inlcuding me…but now you are just going below the belt…be yourself and just dont be a cocky f^ck dawg…
daj224 Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > easy jalmy. you cant be cocky, you failed level 2, > dog. Did I miss your post showing your Level II Pass?
daj224 Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > easy jalmy. you cant be cocky, you failed level 2, > dog. hey Daj - You need a fucking reality check. You passed level 1. That does not make you the smartest person around here, nor does it give you the right to say some shit like the above. You are now in a club that includes roughly 25,000+ other candidates. Until you sit for level 2, shut the hell up. After saying the above to someone who is a week removed from being kicked in the nuts, I suggest you apologize and deflate your head about 13 hat sizes.
I recently started in a front office position after a loooong mission to get there. I Totally agree with kevin002, perseverence and refusal to be told you can’t get there if you dont fit the mould is key. Step 1: Finished uni with top grades (non ivy league) in Computer Science after average grades in school. Prior to uni I had taken two years out of education to work as a Trance DJ, my only experience in finance was a one month internship doing data entry on a trade floor when I was 16. After grauating uni (and a lot of djing / partying) I decided to get into trading. I tried to get a job with any company in the financial services industry that would take me. Although I had a first class degree my high school grades were average so I didnt even pass the first screen on the Investment Banking graduate websites. Somehow average high school + top degree is worse than good high school and average degree?. I ended up (after many online applications & 4 assesement centres) on the IT graduate scheme of a retail bank. After starting there I found out that there was a special grad scheme for “exceptional candidiates” that you had to be invited to. Turns out this was a list of candidates they bought from the Investment Banks of Ivy Leaguers who didnt make it in the final rounds (and were head of the rowing team or some nonsense like that). Step 2: After 3 months in the retail bank I started sending CVs out to investment banks. I must have had over 100 interviews with agencies, 15 with banks and ended up with a job (in another country!) doing trade floor support in the IT department - Reuters / Boolmberg / Spreadsheet work. Step 3: After 1 year I started the CFA and the whole application proceess again…this time maybe 150 agencies, 20 phone interviews, 10 face to face (two in a different country). One of my major problems was that front office very rarely get advertised (especially via agencies). However, agencies who need bums on seats for back / mid office roles like to advertise them as if they were front office. Trying to find the one in a hunderd jobs that actually was front office was hard work. I had also been netwroking like crazy at the bank I was in and managed to get an interview off the back of the external ones I was going to. Ended up taking the single external offer I had as an assitant algo trader at a market making fund as the internal path wouldn’t have been secure. I went to one hedge fund interview where the guy actually said he wanted people from the mid / back office as they were likeley to be hungry and do well I actually enjoyed the interview process, I learnt more from my interviews thatn from any other source. How else am I going to get to sit and talk with fund managers / MDs at banks & trading heads?! Step 4: After a 3 month notice period I finally got to start my shiny new front office job…only to find out that there had been a mix up in the hiring and someone was sat in the seat next to the trader I was supposed to be assisting. In fact I was in the newly formed support team…even though my contract had said “System Trader” on it. AHHHHHHHH! I asked to speak to the trading head the next day…sat down and pitched him for 30 mins on why I should be trading and not supporting. Had to wait a week to speak to the deputsy aswell, turns out they were also looking fo an Equity Trader and decided to trial me doing 50% support and 50% trading. Two weeks later one of the traders on my desk resigned and bam, I was thrown in the deep end with a multi million dollar Equity Derivatives portfolio. The point I want to make is that you can very much make your own luck. In my case a mess up with HR meant that I had the opportunity to get in the seat, but had I not spent the previous three years obssesivley learning everything I could abvout trading and pushing myself to interview etc I would never have been in that position in the first place. I also would have much less idea about what I was doing than I currently do (even though Im still in way out of my depth!) Sorry for the ramble but its been a long time getting here! Perseverance is key, you might have it easier, you might not but in the end you make your own luck.