IT in banking

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  1. #1

    IT in banking

    HI,
    After doing some research, I notice that a lot of IT job oppertunities in Hong Kong are in the banking industry. This makes perfect sence as HK is obviousely one of the important financial centers in the world. However, having some experiences with "unsuccessful" job huntings in NYC, I can't resist but to ask the following questions:
    1. In NYC, someone without derivitive/trading/fixed income experiences is not likely to get a job on wall street. I wondered why, because software is software, as important as domain knowledge is, I didn't see the "functional" knowledge of financial sector any more diffcult than say, supply chain or coporate accounting. The wisdom I later learned, is that wall street is so high paced and stressful, software engineer are required to have the same mental readiness too. Newbies just won't make it. Is this the same thing in Hong Kong too?
    2. I have 10 years of experiences in software, and one of them was in a mortgage company. I also had many exposures to insurance companies in my consulting days. I majored in Economics and still can prove Black-Schole (ok, used to ...) in calculus. Does any of the above improve my chances?
    3. How is the outlook of IT jobs in other industries? I would imagine as a gateway to the huge Chinese market, HK would need a lot of supply chain applications? That happens to be my strongest area ....
    4. Technically I am a J2EE guy. 7+ years in Java and am at architect level. UML and rational, the whole 9 yard. I am doing very well in the states :-) , but does any of these mean anything to HK market?

    Thanks in advance for any advices!


  2. #2

    Join Date
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    hmmm...

    i'd think alot of possibilities.
    the front office systems require quite deeply technical support.
    BS is the easy part. most banks are going into BGM type of multi factor models. so the IT jobs are more into implementation of the calibration and DE from market into system.
    in addition, only the traders have some idea what they want, and frankly they have no idea how to explain to the IT guys. so if they get a new guy that can pick up in 2-3 months time, it wld still require their effort in educating the guy and chances are, it will not be successful as most of them only know half of what's around.

    so end up, alot of IT guys that are employed are ex-academics that have experience in differential equation solution. and they prob employ an ex-trader consultant to help them interface the overall solution.

    to them, the cost between such an experienced person and a non Fin experience IT person is not alot. maybe 50~100k USD per year. so why bother with that kind of risk. employ one that is experienced enough and get it going. that's true for both WS and HK, in fact, anywhere in the world... the employing party are prob the same.

    so there goes. u want to take a bite of the bullet and start from a juniorer position ? then i think there are some spots. if u want a senior IT job.. then i'd think its tough to find a match...


  3. #3
    so there goes. u want to take a bite of the bullet and start from a juniorer position ? then i think there are some spots. if u want a senior IT job.. then i'd think its tough to find a match...
    That is very well put. Thanks a lot for the in-deep analysis, and hence my question 3: is this the dominating field (banking) that use IT or do we have other significant demand from other sectors?

  4. #4

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    One of the biggest users of IT (annual budgets) in HK is the Hong Kong Jockey Club ... go figure.


  5. #5

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    The business experience that's required depends largely on what area the job's in. Front office trader-facing jobs absolutely need a good level of knowledge of the business area involved. If you're one of a team developing a large system then there's more scope for "pure" coding without the need for specific business knowledge. In all cases though, someone who does have the knowledge will be given preference over someone who doesn't. Same in all industries.