Many talented individuals are getting hired on Wall Street. But while it is great to hear that others are doing well, the first thing every job seeker wants to know is this:
"How can I be one of them?"
The answer is not easy. But job seekers can start by exploring more than just the big banks and financial institutions.
PerTrac, a provider of analytics, reporting and communications software for investment professionals, is currently looking to fill an entry-level position in Manhattan.
"We want a four-year degree," Anne Bass, Human Resources Administrator at PerTrac, told StreetID. "[The] entry-level sales position [involves] little to no travel. This is primarily a cold-calling position. You must learn to excel at finding new opportunities through cold-calling. You should have excellent analytic and listening skills -- transferrable skills that you can bring to this role, [as well as] a strong work ethic."
Bass said that the firm looks for candidates who have a "competitive and driven personality."
"You must be highly motivated and willing to accept tough coaching and be held accountable to the agreed upon goals," she said, adding that you should have a "stated a desire to become a highly successful and accomplished sales professional."
"We need folks that can be in a fairly diverse setting. Knowledge of financial markets is a plus. Salary is negotiable depending on the employee."
PerTrac is also looking for a software engineer in Reno, Nevada. "The software engineer position is one we pretty much leave on [the site] year-round," said Bass. "We have doubled our developers. I don't know where they put everybody that works in Reno. The building is almost full."
After going through the resumes, Bass will send an assessment test to prospective candidates. "It takes about 30 to 40 minutes to do that," she said. "When I get the assessment back, if it says 'yes' -- or even if it says 'no' and I feel strongly about the person -- then there will be a phone interview. After the phone interview there will be an in-person interview."
Bass strongly recommends that job seekers check their resumes for spelling errors. She advises against using a "cutesy" e-mail address. If necessary, create a new (professional-sounding) e-mail account on Yahoo or Gmail.
"We appreciate an honestly written resume," Bass concluded. "Also, what can you do for us? Why do you think you're going to be better than anybody else? Sell yourself a little bit more. Show some enthusiasm."
In addition to PerTrac, New York-based Schultze Asset Management is hiring a Junior Trader. The full list of qualifications has been posted on the company's website, but in general the company is simply looking for a talented individual.
"I think we look for team players who want to do well if our clients do well," said George Schultze, Managing Member at Schultze Asset Management. "We're looking for smart people. I think we're close to hiring someone, but the position is still open. We have not hired anyone yet."
Conrad Capital Management is hiring as well.
"Our firm is hiring, but we're not hiring salaried positions right now," said Donald E. Conrad, Founder and President of Conrad Capital Management. "All the salaried positions are filled. We're hiring marketing people and people with an existing book of business -- registered investment advisors or brokers that are leaving because they're fifth quintile. If you're a broker at a large firm and, believe it or not, if you're doing $250,000 at gross production, and you're there five years, you're failing in their eyes."
Conrad said that someone like that can "come into a firm like ours and be a rockstar."
"We would hire someone like that, double their payout, brand them, and give them more support than they've ever had. If you're doing between $150,000 and $250,000 at a large firm, they're not even breaking even with you on their desk. You're sharing a support person with maybe four or five other brokers, maybe three. You're what they call fifth quintile.
"That might be all that person is capable of doing. It just might be the wrong timing for them. They could have personal problems. They could have something in the interim that's affecting them. But the larger firms don't care about that. You're a line item. They're going to make the shareholders happy. Someone like that can come to a firm like ours and be able to thrive and get a level of support that is usually only reserved for the top one percent of producers."
Conrad added that his firm is "only hiring advisors with an existing book of business or people that are interested in marketing on a straight commission basis, right now."
"We're also looking to buy businesses," he said. "If we found a business like ours, a registered investment advisory practice, where somebody was looking for a succession plan -- maybe they were retiring and looking to transition and they want to sell their business, we're looking to buy them."
Meanwhile, fxKnight.com anticipates that it will start hiring again in the near future.
"We go through spurts," said Andrei Knight, hedge fund expert, founder, and Senior Currency Strategist at fxKnight. "We just hired on a couple people, and we plan to be hiring in the near future. At the moment all of our positions are filled. But we're getting ready for a pretty big growth phase, so I anticipate hiring in the near future."
fxKnight suspects that his firm will be interested in traders, Web designers, "and probably customer support reps as we continue to get more and more popular."
"Believe it or not, everybody looks down on customer support reps as an entry-level position," said Knight. "I think it's one of the most important positions within the company. You're the frontline. You're the person a customer is going to talk to first. And as a boss, my customers are what I value most. So my best people are going to go into those roles. It's got to be someone I really trust."
Knight clarified his definition of customer support. "Customer relationship management, I should say," he said. "That's really what the job is. You don't fire off an e-mail and forget about them. I expect my people to really befriend and manage those relationships."