I worked in BO for a year, it was kind of middle as well though. Its not that bad, everyone is trying to get out of it. Im sure some positions are totally repetitive, but when you think about it most jobs get like that. It can be interesting if you start getting involved in other projects, and there normally is opportunity for this. So if you are trying to break out of BO, dont be so down, no 1, atleast you have a job, and no 2, its not that bad, there are a lot worse jobs out there. Plus BO gets paid pretty damn well compared to a lot of other admin jobs
I have a friend who started working in a back office job. He is pretty smart, but the least ambitious person I know. Anyway, personnel turnover was huge, after a year not a single person he started to work with was left. I’ll cut it short for you: Quickly, he was the only one who could pick up the phone in that bo and give an adequate answer. Not knowing that all this guy wanted was a job where he wouldn’t work himself to death and still have a decent income, his superiors literally forced him to make a career. He followed suit, makes good money, but still refuses to work more than 9 hours per day. Occasionally, he puts in 5 hours on a Saturday.
Stiff1 Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > I have a friend who started working in a back > office job. He is pretty smart, but the least > ambitious person I know. Anyway, personnel > turnover was huge, after a year not a single > person he started to work with was left. I’ll cut > it short for you: Quickly, he was the only one who > could pick up the phone in that bo and give an > adequate answer. Not knowing that all this guy > wanted was a job where he wouldn’t work himself to > death and still have a decent income, his > superiors literally forced him to make a career. > He followed suit, makes good money, but still > refuses to work more than 9 hours per day. > Occasionally, he puts in 5 hours on a Saturday. what’s “good money”? asking cause i’m not familiar. also what geographical location?
Back office ain’t so bad if you want to have a better balance in life and still work in financial services. But you will never become a part of something that could change finance. Nothing in BO will make you giddy doing it like trading or corporate finance. On a per-hour basis then yeah the pay is generally good.
It is a fact of life that not everybody in this world feels destined to make billions. Some of the people we share this place with are content with a 9-2-5 job, and I wish there would be more of these people around. The “good money” I mentioned was nothing stellar, certainly not, but it is enough for one or two vacations per year, a decent new car (Volkswagen Passat) and he eats out a lot. His wife doesn’t work. So really nothing to write home about. But I’ve seen other work their a&& off for the same kind of life. And he never had to go through hell and back to get three rotten initials (read: CFA) after his name.
oh come on, you know as soon as you have the CFA letters behind your name you will look at everyone differently. Everyone you meet in work, if they dont have it, you give them that look of “whatever man do you know who i am?”. Everyone with it, you can lock eyes with as you both were in POW camp together. Everyone you hand your card to, you smile as they look and see those letters behind your name…I know you dont want to admit it, but its ok. And yes, bigshot HF/PE dudes will still trump you and give you that look of “whatever man do you know who i am?” to you, but this is the order… bill johnson, BO bill johnson, CFA no brainer
Whats to stop anyone putting CFA initials after their name? If you arent a part of the CFA you wouldnt give a shit anyway if you get reprimanded.
maddane Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > Whats to stop anyone putting CFA initials after > their name? > > If you arent a part of the CFA you wouldnt give a > shit anyway if you get reprimanded. I think the cfai can press charges for copyright infringement if someone were to do that, but I’m not entirely sure.
really, they can have legal ownership ofver the letters CFA used in sequence? What about those poor guys from the cat fanciers association?
yep, according to this the CFA “mark” is protected by trademark laws: http://www.cfainstitute.org/aboutus/policies/marks.html
isnt the mark just the logo? oh well, im not going to do it anyway. but im thinking some dude who wants to etup hi own shop could just put it on his business cards
tvPM Wrote: ------------------------------------------------------- > oh come on, you know as soon as you have the CFA > letters behind your name you will look at everyone > differently. Everyone you meet in work, if they > dont have it, you give them that look of “whatever > man do you know who i am?”. Everyone with it, you > can lock eyes with as you both were in POW camp > together. Everyone you hand your card to, you > smile as they look and see those letters behind > your name…I know you dont want to admit it, but > its ok. > > And yes, bigshot HF/PE dudes will still trump you > and give you that look of “whatever man do you > know who i am?” to you, but this is the order… > > bill johnson, BO > bill johnson, CFA > no brainer There is no doubt I will feel proud everytime I tell someone that I have passed the CFA exams successfully. But will I look differently at others who didn’t? I don’t think so. I have met too many people who have accomplished much greater things in life. That’s humbling.
BO sucks! It sucks sucks sucks! Perhaps your firm is different, but the firm I worked in was created by operations people. Everything PM/ER was outsourced and our firm only did trading/settlement. It sucked working there. Yes, working 8 hours a day was nice, but the pay was complete garbage. Even the director of ops only made high 5 figures which barely affords you the lifestyle of a home/2 car garage/2 kids in my location. Likewise, let’s not forget the externality. The people interested in bo had no interest in the CFA. I was the only ops guy at my firm taking Level 1 shortly after beginning and I got zero support from the firm. I even got some backlash using MY VACATION days the week before the exam. Had it been up to them I’d be in VBA classes learning macro writing to save on paying the programming contractor we had. So if you are contemplating driving a bus or working in finance, ops will be the place for you since the pay is at parity.
if you developed great programming skills in BO, then that could be as valuable or more than CFA. Maybe not what you wanted to do, but just saying. I’m done CFA and have been learning some C# recently, but I’m kind of geeky so it’s fun.
As I said before, Quant-Jock, bo is not for everybody. And by no means did I make a recommendation for bo-jobs. But there are worse jobs out there and I don’t see a reason to regard bo people low. Moreover, YOUR bo experience may not be representative for other bo jobs. I work in a front front position and it was very difficult for me to get a week off before the exam, too. The only support I got from my boss was verbally (something like: “you are doing the CFA? Great. I know somebody who got it”. I took that as a “keep going, if you like”). Thanks for that. I a bo role, I would have done my time, go home fresh and start studying. In my front office role, I busted 11 hours on average and sometimes couldn’t finish one page without almost falling asleep. That is to say: For studying, you are in fact better off working in a bo job.
Sometimes I wonder what life would be like if I had a job with more regular hours. However, at least for now, I think I’d rather have my life be too hectic (and get paid more) than to work in an environment where I’d run the risk of getting bored or not being challenged. In reading the comments from other posters on this forum, it seems like the back office work does get mundane or tedious over time. That being said, there definitely is some repetition in front office jobs too. As an example, in investment banking/private equity, the process of doing the deal is pretty similar from one transaction to the next; in hedge fund work, the process of researching a company is pretty standardized at least at a high level; and in equity research, the process of initiating coverage on a company and getting that published is more or less replicated every time. That said, there have been times lately when I wondered whether I’d be better off doing some type of corporate job. I have a lot of extracurricular interests but barely have the time to do that stuff. I also notice that a couple of my colleagues are more hardcore than me about their job, which, when I compare myself to them, I wonder if I should be doing something else since they’ll probably be better at their tasks than I am. However, at the end of the day, I guess I view a job as a means to an end and even if I’m not #1 in my class, I think it’s OK for me to continue grinding it out as long as I still see upward mobility. Has anyone else gone through a similar reflection process, whereby you feel like some of your colleagues may be more intense about work than you are? Do you ever consider it a sign that maybe you should find something that you’re more passionate about, or do you just focus more on what you can do as opposed to wondering about what your other colleagues are doing?
I find a lot of them are more intense. but too me itgs not a problem, its just a fact that I value having a life out of the office more.
Perhaps my scenario was unique. But I found bo to be full of people not passionate about capital markets and finance like I am. To them working in financial services was a job while I take it more as a career.
Business in the front, party in the back.
I started in bo and like my bo boss once told me, " the move your trying to make it not like most bo analyst" I am now in a fo role