Half of young professionals (53%) working in the finance functions of large organisations want a position on the C-Suite, according to new research revealed today by Metapraxis, the leader in financial analytics technology. However, of these respondents, only 29% want to become CFO, the assumed natural career progression of those working in the finance function today.
Of the remaining respondents, almost a quarter (23%) want to set up their own businesses, using the skills learned in the finance department to effectively become CEOs of their own organisations. A further one in five (20%) are unsure of their future career path, which may be in part due to the increased use of technology and automation in the finance function which they feel is threatening their role.
When looking at the finance function as a whole, almost 4 in 5 (79%) respondents hold the belief that the adoption of technology in the finance function will impact their future career choices. The actions undertaken by these respondents and their industry peers are particularly important as they will shape the future of finance, especially given that millennials are one of the largest demographics in the UK and US workforce and are predicted to take over globally by 2020.
Whilst not all millennials agree on what their future in finance will look like, almost all (98%) agree that data science skills are increasingly important for those who will stay working in the finance function. The urgency needed for those skills is disputed as just over half (51%) want to learn data science skills in the immediate future, but a further 20% believe they won’t need those skills for the next ten years. The importance placed on technological skills by millennials is not mirrored in trade specific skills, as only 61% see accounting skills as being absolutely necessary to be an effective member of the finance team.
Simon Bittlestone, CEO of Metapraxis says:
“Our results prove that millennials are not of the mindset that you need to be restricted to one career path, and instead a career in finance can be the perfect jumping off point to start their own business or eventually transition into a board-level role.
Furthermore, our research shines a light on the importance that millennials place on both technology and data science skills in the finance function of the future. Already data analytics are generating great returns, and with the millennial generation expecting automation to come as standard, this impact is only going to be amplified.”