Top tips for women in fintech on how to build your career

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A Summer 2022 report shows that more than three-quarters of women working in fintech in the UK believe their organisation is inclusive.

This is a positive development for the industry because more women thriving in fintech means a more thriving fintech sector in the future. Here are 10 top tips for women in fintech on how to build your career.

  1. Believe in your talent

A report published in the summer of 2022 by EY has shown that 63% of female respondents believe that their gender impacts how they are perceived professionally and their roles as leaders in an industry that is still male dominated. It’s important that we retain confidence in our professional capabilities and talent! A working paper released in July 2022 by the IMF has shown that the percentage of women now on executive boards is slightly higher at more recently founded fintech firms than traditional firms, showing positive signs of a changing industry.

  1. Cast your net as widely as possible

The people you work with now will be your clients, colleagues or associates of the future – so widen your network and contact list as much as possible. Fintech events are a great place to network, whether in person or virtually, along with conferences or start-up open houses, and of course industry networking events.

  1. Create a digital presence

Make use of the  many free professional social networks, such as LinkedIn, which enable you to build your digital presence. Connect with those who work in the industry both in your city and globally, connect with fintech thought leaders, share your views in discussions and even uncover exciting job opportunities. In the US, employers are now even recruiting through the code hosting platform GitHub, demonstrating how beneficial having a digital presence can be.

  1. Mentoring

Having a mentor can help you understand the wider fintech industry through another person’s perspective and provides a valuable learning experience. It’s important to have at least one visible role model who looks like you, talks like you and has a similar background. If opportunities also arise for you to be a mentor to the younger generation take them as it’s a fantastic way to develop your own leadership skills and positively impact and motivate other young women starting in the industry.

  1. Be the change you want to see

Don’t be afraid to share your success stories or moments of your career journey in webinars, at workshops, networking events and public forums. This will aid in creating supportive, professional networks that women in fintech currently lack, helping to reshape the landscape for women in the sector and help drive change.

  1. Be aware of trends in the fintech industry

Today over 70% of digitally active adults in the UK use a fintech service. According to a Forbes article published on 30 March 2022, the most prominent fintech trends in 2022 you must know are:

  1. Embedded Finance: Used to integrate financial technologies.
  2. Web3: Considered the internet of the future, it decentralises finance using blockchain technology and cryptocurrencies.
  3. Super App: A set of apps that will offer various fintech services like making cashless payments and managing investments.

Being aware of key trends in the industry  is key to navigating and planning your own career journey.

  1. Keep up with regulations

Whilst certain parts of the fintech industry are still outside of the regulatory scope, it has become increasingly important to understand regulations and rules such as general data protection, anti-money laundering policies, ‘KYC’ compliance requirements, and PCI DSS compliance. Ensure your reading lists includes the key updates and many law firms and compliance consultants produce updates which you can sign up to.

  1. Flexibility

It’s amazing to have a specialisation, but this can sometimes lead to a narrow focus instead of embracing change in an ever-growing industry, so be flexible. Your background also doesn’t have to define your entry and progression in your fintech career.

  1. Get creative

Contributing on a blog, podcast, or social media channel that creates fintech related content will help you stay updated with the latest fintech trends and these out-of-the-box ideas can boost your CV.

  1. Find your champions and cheerleaders

These are the people that can lift you up when you excel and catch you when you fall. Your support network will take you a long way, and will be pivotal in supporting you in your focus on tech. I have some great colleagues, partners and mentors who work within the fintech domain and if it wasn’t for them, I wouldn’t be doing what I am today!

About the author

Yasmin JohalYasmin is a Lawyer at CMS and is one of the few females specialising in the regulatory aspects of FinTech. She provides expert advice to all players within the FinTech ecosystem, and helps shape trends and developments in the FinTech industry internationally. She has worked across the UK and US financial markets, helping deploy technological innovation, and frequently authors industry leading thought leadership on areas of financial regulation, FinTech and innovation. Yasmin is a Tech speaker and an advocate for increasing Female and BAME representation in Tech, and speaks at a variety of events and on podcasts, on a range of topics from FinTech, D&I and career development. Yasmin was a #TechWomen100 2020 Award Winner; recognised for her work in Fintech and has also been recognised as a Standout 35 winner in the Women in Fintech Powerlist 2020 with Innovate Finance.