Degree/University: Imperial/ Computing
Year of graduation: 2006
Occupation: Works in sales in the investor solutions department, Barclays Capital
What do you do in your job?
I’m in the sales team, which is part of investor solutions. Basically, we create new products to sell to private banks. On a day-to-day basis, I can be doing anything from dealing with client requests and gathering opinion on what products the clients want to brainstorming innovative ideas, products and solutions. My role also involves talking with traders about structures and trends.
What was your motivation in applying?
I wanted to work on the client side of business and have the opportunity to interact with them as well as with other people in the bank. In a sales role you get exposed to the broader picture of the business. In most of our work we have a mandate to use any asset class, for example, equity derivatives or commodities, and this means we have a much wider product exposure than other people working in alternative areas of the business. Essentially we know about every aspect of the company.
What do you enjoy about your job?
It’s extremely fast paced. A deal can be done very quickly and then suddenly you have to start an entirely new project straightaway. But I get a great deal of satisfaction from the job. I enjoy talking to the clients, as I always wanted a client-facing job. Gathering their opinions and learning about what they need sparks an enjoyable process where I have to create a solution for them. I have the opportunity to be innovative and use all my skills when I’m required to spend time looking at the markets in order to devise an accurate solution.
Advice to readers considering a career in your field
Internships are a great idea because you gain a wealth of information about what a job in that field or that specific company would involve on a day-to-day basis as opposed to just reading about it. I did a 10-week internship with Barclays Capital when I was still at university which was extremely useful to me because the entire time was spent in the same department of the company. At that time I with the team I’m actually working with now and therefore learnt all about the role and what working with them would be like in reality. It’s incredibly important to work in a team you enjoy and in which you can actually develop. It is necessary that you find out whether you’re compatible with the bank’s culture, but don’t forget about the culture of the team as well, which I’d say is even more crucial. Don’t apply to a job blind. Know who you will be working with: in a way when they interview you, you are also interviewing them so ensure you ask enough questions to gain a rounded opinion. Attending presentations is another key piece of advice I’d give. They offer an excellent opportunity to speak to the current employees of a company. Nothing is more valuable than talking to people who are doing the job on a day-to-day basis.