If you are a junior level accountant, a Commercial Analyst position can provide a sensational opportunity to develop not only your analysis but business partnering skills.
Robert Walters provides some of he key advice you need to know when securing a role in this area.
Becoming a commercial analyst is fast becoming the career aim for the accountants newly starting out as it provides a unique prospect to bring a level of opinion to your position.
Although closing and reconciling are still essential elements for the role, you will find significant opportunity to examine the business and make informed predictions and judgements about the market.
Opportunities in the market place
Typically, the market is seeing an increase in employers looking to maximise their investments and look toward the future. This has brought about an increased demand in the market for commercial analysts, making it an opportune time to join the profession, particularly if you are the part-qualified level.
A day in the life of the commercial analyst
The role of a commercial analyst can vary significantly depending on the organisation you are working under. However the primary objective is typically the same, maximising your savings and minimising your spending.
Within a day, you will be reviewing daily and non daily KPI’S (both financial and non financial), meeting with a range of different commercial stakeholders and examining cash flow within the business.
Confidence is key: Soft skills essential to success
Trusting your instinct is a skill in which commercial analysts have to come to rely on as, after all, making future predictions is not an exact science. Commercial analysts have to be confident in their forecasts, underpinned by an ultimate confidence in their understanding of the market.
Similarly, you will need to be able to communicate this effectively between stakeholders to ensure the appropriate action can be taken. This can be the most important when accounting for external regulatory changes, monitoring competitor performance, factoring in dividends and managing the pressure provided by shareholders.
Although the amounts of jobs available in this area are increasing, there is still a large amount in the market. To be successful in securing one of these jobs, you will not only have strong systems and analyst experience, but you will have to be a strong communicator.
On a daily basis, a commercial analyst has to be prepared to interact with stakeholders of varying levels of seniority, communicating their convictions and convincing sales directors of their arguments. In addition to this,, you will also have to have highlighted where you have helped the business make savings on your CV.
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For more career advice please contact:
Nic Sephton-Poultney, Country Manager (South Africa)
+27 (0)11 881 2414