Phone Banking Officer Career Advancement Opportunities
A phone banking officer provides customer service to bank customers over the phone. The specific services provided vary by employer and department, but good computer and communication skills are common requirements for success. A phone banking officer's priority is customer satisfaction. This experience with customers in a banking environment provides a foundation for several career advancement opportunities in the field of finance. Four careers are examined here, including the educational and experience qualifications for each.
|Job Title||Median Annual Salary||Job Growth (2018-28)*||Qualifications|
|Loan Officer||$63,040 (2018)*||8%||Bachelor's degree in finance or similar, or equivalent work experience; Mortgage Loan Originator license (for mortgage loan officers)|
|Investment Banker||$98,918 (2019)**||4% (Securities, commodities, and financial services sales agents)||Bachelor's in finance or similar; MBA degree (for higher-level positions); Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) registration|
|Personal Financial Advisor||$88,890 (2018)*||7%||Bachelor's degree; specific service licensure; state registration|
|Private Banker||$70,138 (2019)**||7% (personal financial advisors)||Bachelor's degree in finance (minimum) or master's degree (preferred); several years of experience|
Sources: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), **PayScale.com
Customer service experience can prove advantageous if a phone banking officer wishes to advance into the role of a loan officer. There are three main areas of specialization in this field: consumer, mortgage, and commercial lending. In all lending areas, loan officers help customers through the loan application process, answering questions in person, through email, and over the phone. They also take on a sales role, marketing their institution's loan products and working to bring in new business. Because loan officers are responsible for inputting data into an underwriting program and assessing the results, strong computer skills, a clear understanding of accounting, and a familiarity with financial statements are necessary requirements. A bachelor's degree in finance or similar is also a common requirement, though applicants with experience in banking and customer service may be able to enter this field without this degree. A Mortgage Loan Originator (MLO) license is required for anyone specializing in mortgage lending.
A phone banking officer with an interest in investments can pursue a career as an investment banker. Investment bankers are employed by investment and commercial banks, private equity groups, and hedge funds. Through the buying and selling of stocks, bonds, and other investments, investment bankers link investors to businesses in need of financing. They are also important players in the creation of initial public offerings (IPOs), as well as in company acquisitions and corporate mergers. Employers often seek applicants with a bachelor's degree in finance or similar for entry-level roles. Higher level investment banking positions can require a Master of Business Administration (MBA). Investment bankers must also register with the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA).
Personal Financial Advisor
Strong customer service skills and a comfortable understanding of the finance industry may also lead a phone banking officer toward the career of a personal financial advisor. Personal financial advisors meet with clients in order to determine their financial needs for short-term and long-term goals. They then advise their clients on investments, monitor those investments, and send their clients regular reports. Some personal financial advisors are also encouraged by their employers to sell insurance products and tax services. Strong networking skills are important for success in this job, as advisors are often required to recruit their clients through various marketing means. Gaining a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification can be beneficial for attracting clients. In addition, a bachelor's degree is often needed to enter this field; a degree focused on finance or business is recommended but not required. Specific licensure is required for each area of service, such as buying or selling investments, selling insurance policies, or providing investment advice. Personal financial advisors may also need to register with their states.
A career as a private banker may be the ideal job for a phone banking executive with financial savvy and a record of high-level customer service. Private bankers, sometimes called wealth managers, are employed by banks to handle accounts for their high-income clients. They protect and increase their clients' incomes through the management of their investment portfolios. Private bankers often work alongside financial and market analysts, accountants, fund managers, and lawyers. They can also be responsible for handling large purchases and estate planning for their clients. Though they work in a bank setting, because of the nature of their clients private bankers are expected to be available 24/7. Requirements for this job include a bachelor's degree in finance, though many employers prefer applicants with a master's degree. An applicant new to the field should expect several years of training alongside a seasoned private banker before gaining clients.