I’ve been working within a back office role for the past 3 years with the hope to move to a front office role. I applied for an operations role because i felt my Masters in engineering would not be strong enough (as it’s non finance) to get into a trading/PM role. To help enhance my profile I became a candidate in the CFA program, passed level 1 first time and am currently pending results on level 2.
The problem is, I cannot get a response on any applications. Has anyone got any hints/tips/suggestions to make the move? Anything i should look out for, great places to apply etc.
There is a bit of a back office vs front office culture, as I’m sure if you’ve spent some time in the back office. Unfortunately this works against anyone that tries to ‘break into’ the front office. From what I’ve seen before, there is a lot of (unfounded) prejudice that the back office ‘doesn’t have what it takes’ to make it in the front office.
To counter that, get someone to vouch for you. Make sure you’ve got lots of friendly faces in front office, that know that you’re a superstar (not just in your current role, but with the potential to do front office work, or have already proven yourself in that area). Connect with people to the point that they would think of you (or at least let you know) if they know of a team that needs to fill a position. See if there are an in-company rotations (depending on company and seniority this could be available).
My gut feel is that PM is probably a closer shot than trading, especially in the context of being a CFA candidate.