If you’re a student and you’re struggling to find a front office role in an investment bank, you may tempted to apply for a job in an investment bank’s back office. Back office jobs, which include trade support, operations, and – more broadly – compliance and risk management, are usually easier to find than jobs in trading, capital markets or M&A.
So far so good for students desperate for jobs in financial services. The only problem is that back office jobs are usually less glamorous and exciting. Students who successfully apply for back office positions often end up stuck in boring roles, wishing they were traders instead.
It should be of interest, therefore, that the Brazilian bank BTG Pactual actually broadcasts its enthusiasm for shifting staff internally from the back to the front office. Last year, BTG says it held over ’35 internal selection processes’ to help people move within the bank. As a result of these processes, BTG says movements from the back to the front office are “common.”
BTG’s willingness to transfer staff from the back to the front office is in direct contrast to other banks. Most banks have reined back-to-front moves after rogue traders like Kweku Adoboli and Jerome Kerviel, both of whom had previously worked in the back office of banks, were able to use their knowledge of the bank’s processes to perpetrate costly frauds.
BTG says it actively recruits graduates from international and Brazilian universities. Graduate hires have to work there for 18 months before being eligible for the internal selection process. BTG increased its proprietary trading revenues 4,000% last year and is therefore probably a good place to work if you’re a student who wants to develop a career placing bets on the direction of the market