Small, Medium, or Big: What Size Fintech Firm Should You Work For?


As the Fintech industry moves ever closer to gaining popular acceptance and becomes more disruptive, it has created a lot of exciting career opportunities for those working in the financial services sector.

Hurrah, we hear you squeal!

But before you start running to pastures new, you need to know that not all of these opportunities are created equal. Do a little research and you will see that there are wide ranges in salary, job security, and job responsibilities, for similar positions across firms.

While there has been a lot of buzz in recent years over the flurry of Fintech start ups, a closer look at the industry reveals that it is actually populated by companies of various sizes and ages.

So, if you’ve started looking into a career in Fintech, you may be wondering how you can make the decision where to go. How established and how big should the firm be? Does any of this really matter?

The truth is companies at each stage of the business cycle bring with them their own mixture of risks and benefits. The right decision for you will depend on your personality, your background, and your career goals – both over the short-term and over the long-term.

To help you narrow down your options, here are a few things to consider:

Small firms and start ups offer more impact and control, but be prepared to take greater risk.

Most fledgling Fintech firms give you the chance to be involved with innovative new products or services often from the ground up. You are also more directly responsible for your firm’s success, not just your own. With fewer people and a nimble internal structure, chances are you will get to learn about the various aspects of running the business- which can be a big plus for your career going forward.

Aside from the chance to work on exciting projects, shop around and you are likely to find bonus upside and stock options that have the potential to be quite lucrative.

But here’s the bad news. Despite what we all feel we’re worth, risk and security are polar opposites. In order to have a big piece of the upside you’re almost definitely going to have to sacrifice your “established company” salary!

Take a good look at yourself and ask the question, “am I prepared to ride a massive rollercoaster and savour the thrills and flipsides?” or do you prefer to play things a little safer?

Remember, the majority of Fintech start ups won’t make it past 5 years. But, for those that do survive, statistics suggest that early employees tend to stick around longer– a sign that job satisfaction is good. Buckle up folks….

Large, established firms allow you to be a part of the industry with less risk.

Before we get to the benefits of working for a larger Fintech firm, please note that “established” for this industry means it was founded over 5 years ago. So, chances are you will still be looking at a relatively new firm.

But, in this case, there will be more layers of corporate hierarchy as well as a more rigid job description. While this may compromise some of the job’s flexibility and impact, it comes in exchange for significantly more job security. More of a merry-go-round we say…

Have your cake and eat it too with a medium, high growth company.

If you are looking for some kind of compromise between making an impact in a high-growth company, yet having a little more job security, then a growing, medium-sized firm could be for you.

Typically, these firms have been around for 3 to 5 years and employ about 50 to 100 workers. They have past the start up phase and are now in the process of expansion.

The great thing about such firms is that they tend to have a similar atmosphere and work environment to a start up. You can still make an impact and learn many new things. But, since the firm has been around for a few years, it may be more focused on its target market and business goals. It also may have some formal systems in place to smooth operations. Stock upside will be less, but the chance of a successful exit much more likely. All of this adds to the company’s stability and appeal.

In short, opportunities are abound in the Fintech industry.

But, you need to make an effort to choose the best situations to suit you and your career aspirations.

Are you a high flyer or a steady Eddy?

Or maybe you’re just somewhere in the middle.

If you are looking for a career within the FinTech industry reach out herelogo-FINTECH