Ultimate tips for the perfect finance analyst resume

When creating a finance analyst resume, it's vital to tailor your skills and experience to the role in question. Grab attention and prove you're the right person for the job with these tips.

If there are two things every business in the world loves, it's money and data. In most cases, that money and data is there specifically to make more money and gather more data.

Money speaks for itself, but data is often useless without someone making sense of it then making suggestions or decisions on what to do with the information at hand.

As a finance analyst, that's where you come in. You're the miner in the gold rush. There's incredible wealth buried in there, but someone needs to take on the role of extracting it and making it useful.

Those large amounts of money and data mean plenty of jobs to go around for financial analysts. However, you don't want just any job. You want interesting data and lots of it. You prefer a comfortable, spacious office with a view to die for. You never want to worry about healthcare, dental plans, or retirement again because they're all taken care of through your job. That's you and every other financial analyst out there.

They're your competition, and they have resumes in hand with the same kinds of experience and qualifications you have. If you want the office and benefits, you need to be prepared to go above and beyond. With just a single sheet of information, you need to grab a prospective employer and convince them you're the person for the job.

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1. Use a reverse-chronological finance analyst resume to showcase your work experience

"What have you done for me lately?," asks the employer. Well, the answer is not a lot, as they haven't hired you yet. But they will, and they're hiring the best possible version of you. You're a better finance analyst today than you were last week. You're infinitely better than when you picked up your MBA in finance.

Every decision you made, additional qualification you achieved, and membership organization you joined led to the success you had in your most recent role, so put it to the top of the pile, right where your resume will be!

Your past experience isn't the time for a dramatic buildup. You've got seven seconds to catch the eye, and if an employer glosses over your summary, they'll head to your experience section, then they'll read it in order.

Let's talk numbers. If you've had three financial analyst roles, put 70% of your effort into showcasing yourself in the first, 20% in the second, and 10% in the third. Your current or most recent job is the one that best showcases what a new employer can expect, so show them precisely that, and with real-world examples.

When showcasing your achievements, consider the following:

  • Read the job description. Then read it again. Read it one more time, then head to the website and look up the brand's social media. Come to know them better than they know themselves, then focus your experience on what matters.
  • Back up your achievements with facts. They're recruiting a finance analyst. They want you to love numbers. Go all out on the dollar figures you saved or earned your previous employer. Go right ahead and speak about the percentage improvement in client revenues.

Discuss what you've done and prove you're capable. The employer will see that you've done it before, so it's only logical that you can do it again. If you can reach a stage where your positive impact on a business resulted in your services basically being free, you're almost a shoo-in for the role.

Even if you can't, employers love potential as long as it's backed up by some sort of track record in tangible achievements.

Finance analyst work experience section example

VEQ International, LLC, Chicago, IL, United States
Derivatives Analyst
2016-2020

  • Collected and analyzed financial data and stayed up-to-date with current laws and regulations.
  • Communicated with key clients and provided professional financial advice and recommendations to them.
  • Prepared detailed P&L analysis and assisted in the management of over 50 accounts.
  • Prepared monthly global derivative forecasts and executed other duties as necessary.
  • Won the Employee of the Year Award once for meeting all assigned goals and objectives.

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2. Back-up your finance analyst experience with qualifications and credentials

You don't have to spend too much time on qualifications on many financial resumes as it often becomes a case of more of the same. For example, if you want to be a Certified Public Accountant, you sit and pass the Uniform Certified Public Accountant Examination.

When it comes to creating a resume, you note that you are indeed a qualified CPA or hold whatever other qualification matters. The trouble is, so does every other applicant. Without it, they're literally unqualified for the role.

That's not the case for finance analysts. If you want to be a Chartered Financial Analyst, you complete the CFA Program with a dash of work experience on the side. If you don't want to be chartered, you don't need to be.

Indeed, you're all set for an entry-level finance analyst position with a bachelor's degree, preferably in a relevant subject such as math, accounting, economics, or finance. Admittedly, that's a relatively low baseline in the finance world, but it makes it easier to stand out.

Crucially, if you have more than just a bachelor's degree, you hold an immediate advantage over much of the competition. So if you're a CFA, have a master's degree, or are a member of a professional organization, shine a spotlight on those achievements.

Finance analyst certifications section example

Certifications

  • Chartered Financial Analyst
  • Certified Fund Specialist
  • Certified Public Accountant
  • Personal Financial Specialist

Experience matters too but given a choice between a qualified finance analyst and an even better-qualified one; most employers will opt for the latter. Don't be afraid to coast on the institution's name and anything else that might stand out either.

Need more advice on how to nail the education section of your network engineer resume? Head straight to: How to Put Your Education on a Resume.

3. Showcase your best finance analyst hard and soft skills

Specialists are required in every organization, especially when it comes to the finance department. However, employers are increasingly looking towards well-rounded individuals who can contribute in many ways.

You can demonstrate that you have what it takes to be a team player by going in-depth on both hard and soft skills related to the role. It's never too early to demonstrate that you might be suitable for management or other functions, even before you've got the job, and a broad skillset is the first step.

As with any role, when listing your skills, focus on the ones that matter most for the job in question. If your role will be heavily spreadsheet-driven, move your Excel and Access capabilities to the top of the list. If you know an organization uses specific tools, give your abilities suitable prominence on your financial analyst resume.

Nobody knows what you're capable of better than you do, but if you're brainstorming ideas, consider the following inclusions:

Finance analyst hard skills for your resume

  • Performance analysis
  • Asset management
  • Financial reporting
  • Excel, Access, and other software skills
  • Data analysis
  • Trendspotting

The best finance analyst soft skills to put on your CV

  • General IT proficiency
  • Leadership and management
  • Teamworking
  • Problem-solving
  • Ambition
  • General communication skills

In closing, we'll reinforce the fact that a finance analyst's resume can be more difficult to perfect than for other roles, as there are so many variables. Once you reach a certain level in your career, there are no longer qualifications that everyone in the pile will have. Experience will traverse industries and sectors. That makes it all the more essential to highlight your most relevant skills and knowledge on your resume while capturing attention in the small window afforded by recruiters.