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Learn FinTech

A Comprehensive Guide to Start Learning FinTech

FinTech (short for Financial Technology) is a field of technology centered on financial transactions and services. FinTech professionals use data science and coding to reinvision traditional financial processes and products. Some examples of FinTech are banking apps, stock trading automations, and cryptocurrency.

If you’ve always wanted to learn FinTech but can’t figure out how to get started, this guide is for you. Here, you’ll learn more about the various ways to learn FinTech, free resources to take advantage of, and the types of careers that commonly use FinTech.

What is FinTech?

In the field of finance, FinTech is the use of cutting-edge financial technology. FinTech encompasses products, services, and FinTech companies themselves.

Examples abound. FinTech products and services include:

  • Mobile payments
  • Investment advisory services
  • Blockchain technology
  • Bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies
  • Banking as a Service (BaaS)
  • Lending (B2B and B2C)
  • Credit reporting services

Top-rated FinTech products and services include:

  • Apple Pay
  • Stripe
  • PayPal Payments Pro
  • Coinbase
  • Wise

While many companies offer positions to FinTech professionals, comprehensive roles differ substantially from limited roles. For example, a Marketing Analyst may use some FinTech applications for specific tasks, whereas a Risk Control Manager may rely on FinTech for much of her daily activities.

Space prohibits a complete list of possible FinTech positions, but the following titles include the most common ones for FinTech pros:

  • App Developer
  • Blockchain Developer
  • Business Analyst
  • Business Development Manager
  • Compliance Manager
  • Cybersecurity Analyst
  • Data Scientist
  • Financial Advisor
  • Financial Analyst
  • Investment Analyst
  • Market Analyst
  • Mobile App Developer
  • Python Developer
  • Risk Control Manager

Finally, FinTech skills apply to virtually every industry, but some of the best-known include:

  • Banking/Finance
  • Cybersecurity
  • Data Science
  • Insurance
  • Machine Learning
  • Mobile App Development
  • Software as a Service (SaaS)
  • Wealth Management

The ABCDEF of FinTech reads as follows:

  • A - Artificial Intelligence (AI)
  • B - Blockchain technology
  • C - Cloud computing
  • D - Data Availability
  • E - Efficiency
  • F - Futuristic Vision

What Can You Do with FinTech?

FinTech refers to the many Financial Technology products and services you can use today and some of the companies that offer them. Consider FinTech as an umbrella term referring to three main categories:

  1. Services - On a basic level, many FinTech services may be considered products, and vice versa. PayPal is a service, but the platform of services PayPal offers may be called a product itself. To simplify matters, look at services that are now commonly provided and named as such: Banking as a Service (BaaS), payment services like Venmo, and investment services like Robinhood.
  1. Products - FinTech products range from the payment app you use on your smart device every day to robo-advisors and digital banking. Currencies aren’t typically referred to as products, but cryptocurrencies certainly fall into the product category as opposed to a service.
  1. FinTech Companies - Organizations like Visa and Mastercard top the list of major FinTech companies in the U.S., followed by Tencent and Ant Financial in China, then U.S. companies Intuit, PayPal, and Stripe. These firms offer FinTech products or services, and people generally refer to the companies themselves as “FinTechs.”

Additional FinTech products, services, and technological innovations include wealth management, insurance (a.k.a., “insurtech”), and credit reporting/identity theft protection services.

Why Learn FinTech?

Most people have varying degrees of familiarity with FinTech services and products like Apple Pay, Venmo, and PayPal. But knowing how to use Starbucks Rewards is a far cry from learning how to build FinTech applications.

When someone says they want to learn FinTech, their intention can differ vastly from another person who says the same thing. FinTechs like Mastercard and Visa need cybersecurity professionals, as do banks and other financial institutions that offer FinTech services. On the other hand, tech giants like Apple and Google may focus more on developing new products in addition to those they already provide.

The world of cryptocurrency and the blockchain may still be more of a Wild West than traditional banking, but startups in this sector require everyone from Software Developers to Financial Analysts.

Whether you plan a role in data science, banking, finance, insurance, wealth management, or cybersecurity, FinTech will undoubtedly play a role. Whichever way you go, consider FinTech as a factor.

Read more about why you should learn FinTech.

How to Learn FinTech

Every FinTech professional has their own journey to knowledge and mastery. Some use a few FinTech tools as part of their daily activities, while others specialize in FinTech companies. How to begin depends on the goals and requirements of the desired position or even a well-planned career trajectory.

Most professionals need to take the degree of difficulty, for matters as practical as time, budget, and family or other commitments.

Consider the example of a beginner in a field like cybersecurity. Once a low-budget, generic set of solutions like McAfee antivirus software and its competitors, cybersecurity has grown into a major industry. Ransomware, spyware, phishing, and other cyber threats evolve daily, increasing the need for everyone from the Federal government to individual business owners to get protective measures updated continually.

A beginner in cybersecurity might consider the following questions:

  1. How long will it take to learn cybersecurity?
  2. How challenging will the coursework be?
  3. What resources will it require?

Certainly, no one can answer these for a student. Mastering both FinTech fundamentals and advanced knowledge requires some degree of difficulty. However, given an individual student’s aptitude and skill set, learning the tools common to FinTech and cybersecurity may be relatively straightforward.

The following list of skills and tools can be common to numerous FinTech positions:

  • Data analytics
  • Python
  • Javascript
  • SQL database management
  • Regression analysis
  • Data visualization
  • Machine learning (ML)
  • Artificial intelligence (AI)

Beginners often start with free resources—from blog posts and news articles to live or archived seminars and self-paced classes. These can provide many benefits, but anyone seeking an entry-level position will need to begin a more formal educational process at a certain point.

Careers that Use FinTech

Top FinTech careers vary, from Investment Analysts to Blockchain Developers. Business Analysts, Data Scientists, and Financial Advisors are all examples of titles that depend on FinTech to greater or lesser degrees.

Today the top FinTech sectors are:

  1. Embedded Finance
  2. Open Banking
  3. Banking as a Service (BaaS)

Careers in these sectors range from jobs like Financial Systems Analyst and Risk Manager to Data Analyst, Data Scientist, Compliance and Privacy Analyst, and even positions like Senior Database Engineer.

FinTech professionals moving from entry-level to management on a well-planned trajectory should also consider the roles of certifications. Professional designations essential to many FinTech roles include:

  • Certified Financial Planner (CFP)
  • Project Management Professional (PMP)
  • Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)
  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
  • Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
  • Certified Blockchain Expert (CBE)
  • Wealth Management Certified Professional (WMCP)

Whatever role you take, the knowledge and experience you’ll gain from a Noble Desktop bootcamp or certificate program will benefit you both in the short and long run.

Free Introductory FinTech Course Online

If you’re not yet ready to commit to a full-length course, you can start learning about FinTech for free online. Check out Noble Desktop’s Get Started In Data Science seminar or their Intro to Python Fundamentals seminar. In these free introductory courses, you’ll learn about subjects like data science, practical uses of Python, and how to analyze datasets, among others.

Additional course providers who offer free online classes include Global FinTech Academy and FBS Markets, Inc. You’ll find offerings on topics like Regulatory Technology (RegTech), FinTech applications, and FinTech Law and Policy, to name a few.

Read about more free FinTech videos and online tutorials.

Level of Difficulty, Prerequisites, & Cost

The difficulty involved in learning FinTech depends significantly on how you study it and how much you’ll need to apply your knowledge. You may need to master programming languages like Python and Java, data visualization tools like Power BI or Tableau, or learn about cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology. Data Scientists, Financial Analysts, and Cybersecurity Experts all learn FinTech to varying degrees.

FinTech prerequisites also depend to a high degree on how they will be applied. Learning computer programming like Python, gaining probability and statistics expertise, and studying FinTech companies can pave the way for a career in this wide-ranging field.

The cost of FinTech training also varies. While college and university programs typically cost more than any other options, in-person or online bootcamps offer intensive training at much more affordable prices. Many students begin with free online tutorials or seminars, but these only provide a starting point for most FinTech careers.

Read more about how difficult it is to learn FinTech.

How Does Learning FinTech Compare to Other Fields?

In many ways, you can consider FinTech a field within a field. Careers in cybersecurity, banking, mobile app development, and even insurance all fall within its purview. “Learning FinTech” means one thing in wealth management, while its meaning differs considerably in the insurance field.

Top FinTech roles can include anything from Data Scientist to Blockchain Developer. It pays to train in the most in-demand skills, from Python, Java, and SQL to broader categories like artificial intelligence (AI). Some may prove more challenging than others to master, but a comprehensive bootcamp or certificate can offer a solid foundation.

Read more about how FinTech compares to other fields.

How to Decide the Best Way to Learn FinTech

If you’re not ready to commit to a full-length FinTech course, you might want to start with a free seminar or tutorial. Noble Desktop’s Intro to Python Fundamentals or Intro to SQL can be a great place to start.

However, to develop a solid foundation in FinTech, plug a skill gap, or uplevel to another position from your current role, a FinTech Bootcamp may be your best bet. These high-level courses offer comprehensive training in a hands-on environment and include a verified Certificate of Completion.

Want to master FinTech for a new career or pivot to a new industry? Many FinTech beginners go into areas like data science, machine learning, or artificial intelligence. Noble’s Data Science Certificate program will teach FinTech fundamentals like Python, including libraries like Pandas and NumPy.

Your preferred method of learning, prior FinTech knowledge, and factors like budget and availability will also factor into your decision-making process. Whichever direction you choose, a formal program can offer you the biggest bang for your buck.

Learn FinTech with Hands-on Training at Noble Desktop

Some people think there’s only one path to training for a FinTech career, that of a lengthy degree program, but there are other alternatives. Among the most popular is the bootcamp or certificate training model.

Noble Desktop is a leading provider of online education in areas directly relevant to the booming FinTech field. They provide multiple educational options for students, both those who are new to FinTech and others already working in tech. The following are some of their most popular programs.

  1. FinTech Bootcamp - This comprehensive FinTech course is open to beginners and can be completed in four weeks full-time or four months part-time. Topics include SQL and Python for data science, automation, and machine learning.
  1. Python for Finance Bootcamp - The 18-hour Python for Finance Bootcamp acquaints students with financial models, managing portfolios with Python, and other Python-centered topics. Students can save by taking this class as part of the FinTech Bootcamp. See course listings for prerequisite information.
  1. Financial Modeling Bootcamp - A 21-hour program, the Financial Modeling Bootcamp includes topics like Discount Cash Flow (DCF), Leveraged Buyouts (LBO) Modeling, and financial analysis with MS-Excel. Check course listings for details, including prerequisite information.

Other Noble Desktop programs to consider are the Python Programming Bootcamp, Data Science Certificate, and Python for Data Science Bootcamp.

FinTech Classes and Bootcamps

Course providers like Noble Desktop provide a wealth of information for FinTech students. In addition to their many live and recorded tutorials, they offer individual classes, bootcamps, and certificate programs in the most popular FinTech-related subjects, like data science, Python programming, and cybersecurity.

Noble’s FinTech Bootcamp currently reigns as its flagship certificate program for FinTech beginners. Noble Desktop does not require prior coursework for the bootcamp, but applicants should be familiar with finance fundamentals like stocks and financial statements. Check course details for more information.

Continuing with the cybersecurity example, Noble also offers a comprehensive Cybersecurity Bootcamp. As one of the essentials in the FinTech world, cybersecurity plays an increasingly important role. Graduates from the Cybersecurity Bootcamp often look for roles in positions like Cybersecurity Analyst or Cybersecurity Engineer.

The Python for Finance Bootcamp acquaints students with financial models, managing portfolios with Python, and other key topics. Students can save by taking the bootcamp as part of the FinTech Bootcamp. See listings for prerequisite information.

Key Takeaways

  • FinTech is a broad field encompassing financial technology products, services, and companies. Top FinTech positions include:
  • App Developer
  • Business Analyst
  • Cybersecurity Analyst
  • Data Scientist
  • Financial Analyst
  • Marketing Analyst
  • Risk Control Manager

The tools and skills a person will need for a FinTech role depend on the type of role they fill. Primary areas for FinTech professionals include:

  • Data analytics
  • Python programming
  • Javascript
  • SQL database management
  • Regression analysis
  • Data visualization
  • Machine learning (ML)
  • Artificial intelligence (AI)

Top categories for FinTech today include:

  1. Embedded Finance
  2. Open Banking
  3. Banking as a Service (BaaS)

FinTech professionals looking to advance in the field should consider professional designations through certification programs. Among the most popular in FinTech:

  • Project Management Professional (PMP)
  • Certified Public Accountant (CPA)
  • Certified Ethical Hacker (CEH)
  • Certified Information Systems Security Professional (CISSP)
  • Wealth Management Certified Professional (WMCP)
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