4 Ways to Find a Job in Investment Banking


Investment banking is a specific division of banking related to the creation of capital for other companies, governments, and other entities. Investment banks underwrite new debt and equity securities for all types of corporations; aid in the sale of securities; and help to facilitate mergers and acquisitions, reorganizations, and broker trades for both institutions and private investors. Investment banks also provide guidance to issuers regarding the issue and placement of stock. Investment banking positions include consultants, banking analysts, capital market analysts, research associates, trading specialists, and many others.” [2]


Getting a job as an investment banker is highly competitive. But there are many paths that a finance student can pursue while trying for a career in investment banking. Below are the different types of investment banking jobs and the skill set required for each one as well as 4 Stepping Stones to Finding a Job in Investment Banking.

Merger and Acquisitions
Mergers and Acquisition bankers specialize in providing companies strategic advice when they plan to do a merger with a competitor or try to acquire a smaller firm. [4]
Skills Needed: In this specialization, an investment banker must be really sound in terms of Financial Modeling because this is what they base their suggestions and advice on.

Investment bankers in this division specialize in debt or equity. They assist banks and corporations in raising capital.
Skills Needed: To thrive in this section, an investment banker needs to have strong communication with traders and security sales personnel in order to ascertain the market situations as well as the price that any security might command in the market. [5]

Venture Capital
Venture capital firms specialize in investing in new companies or startups, especially the ones that are fast-moving and growing.
Skills Needed: an investment banker striving to make a mark in venture capital needs to know how to recognize the right opportunities at the right time.

Private Equity
Private equity firms are a contrast to venture capital firms since they invest in well-established companies.
Skills Needed: The job requirement for an analyst in this section is having an excellent track record in investment banking. 

Besides these sections, there are other career options and routes in investment banking that a finance student can pursue such as buy-side investment firms, real estate segment, sell-side firms, insurance, and allied companies, data-driven companies, fundraising, etc. 

4 Ways to Find a Job in Investment Banking

1. Qualifications and Certifications
Needless to say that a degree in finance, economics or statistics is absolutely crucial for a person to make it in this industry. With an undergraduate degree, a finance graduate can apply for the position of Analyst. To pursue the position of an Associate, one needs to complete an MBA. Analysts can still be promoted to the position of an Associate, but the typical route is to go back to school before they are promoted. [6] A coveted certification is CFA or Certified Financial Analyst which is a professional credential offered internationally by the American-based CFA Institute to investment and financial professionals. It has the highest level of international legal and regulatory recognition of finance-related qualifications. [7]

2. Essential Skills
A business article suggests the following as the key skills for an investment banking pursuant or a finance student to encompass. [8]

  • Fluency in quantitative skills.
  • Creative problem-solving skills.
  • Inferential and beyond-data approach.
  • Well-honed presentation skills.
  • Excellent presentation, reporting, and data-skill.
  • Excellent interpersonal skills.
  • Team skills that need to be both communicative and collaborative.
  • Ability to work long hours.
  • Financial integrity, discipline and dedication.
  • An absorptive learner who can work on best practices in the absence of SOPs (standard operating practices).

3. Technical Skills
It is vital that a financial student has the following technical skills while pursuing a career in investment banking.

  • Adept in VB Macros and Microsoft Excel Suite.
  • Basic accounting and financial concepts.
  • Financial analysis, inferences, forecasting, and asset valuation.
  • Able to create financial as well as data models with tools and graphics.
  • Able to present visual data in Excel.
  • Preparation of accounting statements.
  • Interpretation and preparation of ratio analysis.
  • Comparative performance analysis of multiple companies.
  • SWOT analysis.
  • Discounted-Cash-Flow valuation techniques.

4. Network
A finance student needs to further their chances of getting into the investment banking sector by improving their network especially if they are in a non-target school. With a target school, the graduates are directly recruited by investment banks. Below are the various ways that a finance student can adopt to further their chances of finding a job in investment banking. [9]

  • Contact their student center and get connected to alumni working with investment banks. A better option is to reach out to Alumni Alliances, which is a professional alumni network in which one can network effectively with alumni from their alma mater. To find out more about this new and effective professional alumni network, Sign Up now!
  • Consider professional networking platforms like LinkedIn.
  • Join a local CFA society
  • Attend a NIBC or National Investment Banking Competition. It is open to both undergraduate and graduate students “who want to utilize and develop skills in financial modeling and pitching based on a real-world simulation of an investment banking transaction.” [10]

These are the 4 ways to find a job in investment banking that a finance student can use to their advantage. We hope you liked the article. Stay hooked to Alumni Insider for more helpful articles like this. Please share your views via the comments section and do share this article on the various social media platforms to help other finance students.

1. Featured Image – Adeolu Eletu
2. Investment Banking vs Private Equity: What’s the Difference?
3. Image – Investment Banking Career Path
4. Types of Investment Banking Jobs
5. Types of Investment Banking Jobs
6. Investment Banking Career Path
7. Chartered Financial Analyst
8. Different Types of Investment Banking Jobs
9. Guide to Getting a Job in Investment Banking
10. NIBC


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  1. Usually I never comment on blogs but your article is so convincing that I never stop myself to say something about it. You’re doing a great job.

    • Thank you so much. It’s good to understand how you as an applicant can prepare well for a career in investment banking. Please do read our other blogs on job search and recruitment. Happy reading!

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