SFE Young Professionals: Don’t underestimate the power of networking

Kimberley Hoy, Project Co-ordinator at Hymans Robertson, discusses SFE Young Professionals Summer Series and the advantages of connecting with peers and sharing experiences from across financial services.

Scottish Financial Enterprise Young Professionals are in the midst of their Summer Series focusing on business exchange.  These informal lunchtime gatherings, hosted by young professionals themselves, provide an opportunity to learn about various roles within the financial services industry. 

The first event was held by Hymans Robertson, an independent firm providing pensions, investments, benefits and risk consulting services as well as data technology solutions.  The presenters gave an overview of the business before sharing insights on their current role, career journey and aspirations for the future.  As well as a free lunch, Young Professionals also benefitted from the opportunity to network with other like-minded individuals in the industry.

Ali Humphry began her career as a student actuary and worked her way through 15 exams and various CPD activities before qualifying as an actuary in 2016. She described the difficulty in balancing her job with studying but provided assurance that the time and effort was all worth it (not just for the champagne celebrations upon qualification).  Ali’s role at Hymans Robertson now includes working as a support actuary in the pensions consultancy practice, a risk modelling consultant in the quantitative modelling practice and acting as a People Manager. Looking forward, she’d like to continue to champion increased collaboration between the two practices she works across, help to generate new business and develop her internal leadership roles.

Matthew Hulks, a Strategy & Markets Analyst, originally worked in the energy sector before moving into financial services.  He spoke about the parallels and contrasts between the two industries, and went on to describe one of the most appealing elements of his current role at Hymans Robertson; the genuine opportunity to contribute to the future direction of the business. Matt’s aspirations include helping Hymans to identify and take advantage of future market opportunities and developing his people management responsibilities, as well as potentially undertaking further study.

A particularly interesting aspect of this event was the chance to hear about two completely different roles and career paths.  It shows that the financial services industry is made up of a range of individuals with a variety of talents and skills, and that there are opportunities out there to suit everyone with an interest and aptitude.

The advantages of attending these business exchange events should not be underestimated. By meeting up and sharing experiences, young professionals can make connections and build relationships with those they might not ordinarily come into contact with. Creating a professional network helps the individual to increase their knowledge of the industry and learn from others successes, as well as providing insight and motivation for their developing career.

The next events in the SFE Young Professionals Summer Series will be hosted by Sopra Steria and Brewin Dolphin on 13 and 24 August, respectively, if you would like to attend please click here to register. The events are open to young professionals at SFE member companies.