All New Wilmott Jobs Board                     (b)

CV Optimisation for Quant Careers 2

In a tighter market the ratio of applicants to jobs goes up big time, not only because there are fewer jobs, but also because people apply to more jobs, including ones for which they obviously are not suitable. Managers/HRs and HHs are more alert for no-hoper CVs, and you really don’t want to be labelled as one if you genuinely have what they are looking for.
You should assume that they are applying tough filters, and take the trouble to make sure you send the message that you aren’t just spamming your CV at every firm with “bank” in its name.= A goo covering letter can make a difference in this situation, and the gold standard here is to show that you can do what they need. But let’s be realistic, here...
As a newbie, you don’t know exactly what the prop exotics desk at a top IB desperately need, and anything you say on this risks making you look like a naive fool.
Live with it.
No one gets to interview for a great job in a top firm by looking as if they are “quite competent”, you have to stand out. Imagine if different managers score your CV out of 10, and you get 6 from them all. In this market, that can mean quite literally no interviews. It is better to get scores of a mix of 2s and 8s, even if the average is lower, since the 8 will get you an interview. So it is worth taking risks. Google the firm and this business area, and try to spot things that make you more useful, and explicitly say so. Getting it wrong increases the low scores, but get it right and you’ve dramatically increased the chances of getting a job. We have learned that some hiring managers see the phrase “your firm”, as in “I would be a great asset for ’your firm’ as a fatal proof that you aren’t even bothering to put their name in the spam.

CV Optimisation for Quant Careers I

If you've had the sort of academic path suitable for a career in quant finance, then you have got through a decent number of filters by showing that you are smart.
Smart is good for finance, but once you get into the game of looking for a job, then the relevance of what you can do becomes more important.
If you are going for some trading jobs, "too much" quant skill can actually work against you, though for others, more is better. So finding out as much as possible is very important here. But often you can't, so the solution is to have different ratios of the space you give to each set skills in multiple versions of your CV.

How to get More Money #2

If I ring you up, and leave messages on your voicemail, saying I can get you more money, the odds really are that it's true.
Yes, it's true that some HHs carpet bomb, but we don't, to the point that some people even mange to feel neglected.

How to Get More Money

For the next version of the Guide, we want to cover how to get more money. Not only when you go for your first job, but also how to position yourself to make the most of what you get later on. I'm going to kick it off with a few observations, and basic tips. I hope you will join in in discussing it here First up, once you get told what you are going to get in the next year is almost certainly fixed by the point at which you get told. It is is too late then to say "but I did all this good stuff, and worked until my fingers bled". You need to tap into the timescale in which your boss is working on what he's going to give you next year.
*It is also important to understand the political accountancy that is going on between him and his boss, his peers, and yours as well.
It is not enough that you boss thinks you did a good job, these other stakeholders in the process must also see his decision as rational. The majority of quants report to a manager who can't just divide up his budget in any way he sees fit. Sometimes he will need formal approval, and even if he is very senior, he won't want to rock the boat too much by what seems an irrational allocation of money.
So, it's important not only to make sure your boss gets the message, but also those who help him make the decision. On the forum and the next edition of my blog, I'll talk about ways to work this.