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Career advice -- All help gratefully received ...

Posts: 1

Career advice -- All help gratefully received ...

I hope you'll forgive me the indulgence but I wonder if you could help me with a career dilemma.

Put simply, the day-to-day client service required in my current job just isn't for me. More than that, it's making me miserable. It may have taken me a while to realise it (I'm in my mid 30s) but I'm an analyst. Ask me to be creative in unmasking data patterns and I'm hooked.

Here's the problem: my current role is in giving financial advice and, while my general PC and Excel skills are strong (eg VB coding), I have no knowledge of SAS-like packages. I'm certainly willing to learn, though, and previous research roles in investment theory have reduced the pace at which my technical knowledge has dissipated. (I have a BSc in maths, stats and OR)

Given the above, I guess my questions to you all would be:

• Aside from talking to recruitment consultants, what advice would you give me in trying to get an analytical role?

(Junior SAS Analyst roles at UK retail banks are just one example of the sort of interesting things that I've seen. Also, while I'm not Bill Gates, my wife and I have discussed the major wage drop and we're both fine with it. With apologies for the cliché, we'd rather be happy and comfortable than miserable and wealthier.)

• Given your thoughts on the previous question, how do you think I should upgrade my skills? Would taking holiday from my current job and going on some SAS introductory courses initially suffice (with on-the-job training thereafter)? Or would I need more training to get my foot in the door?

Finally, please feel free to be candid on your views on whether you think I'm being realistic in trying to alter my career path at this point. I'm confident that it would be best for me but am pragmatic enough to realise that consistent advice from others should probably be heeded.

At the risk of presumption, many thanks to you all for your help.


-- Analyst

P.S. Apologies if I've sent this to the wrong forum, but this forum seemed most appropriate.
Posts: 0

Re: Career advice -- All help gratefully received ...

Here's $.02

Look for a job in the trading industry.
I used to work for an Exchange.
Brokerages and Trading firms usually have need or your sort of person, and with your background in financial advice, it shouldn't be hard.
Many brokerage/trading firms hire analysts to come up with all kinds of different analyses and (nuts, lost the word) for developing trading strategies.

Another possibility is the Insurance industry, but that is usually limited to actuarial analysis.


Oh, and by the way, some of these positions pay > $100,000 salaries, some pay < $70,000 so be careful. Message was edited by: Chuck
Posts: 0

Re: Career advice -- All help gratefully received ...

How do you see moving to a sas-centric role as being an improvement? I am under the impression that there are analysts and consultants who dwell on data mining, business intelligence, or other roles revolving around analysis of data. Is that different or an improvement over what you are involved in now?

I find it useful to start with SAS Learning edition (which is relatively cheap), where I get to slowly pick up the programming language and practice on my desktop. Once the fundamentals are in place, it should be relatively easy to decide where there might be a best fit between your career objectives and the options before you.
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