Fintech is a term used to describe financial technology, a sector that covers all types of technology in financial services – from businesses to customers. Fintech defines any company that offers financial services through software or other technology and includes everything from smartphones to cryptocurrency payment apps.
Fintech loosely defines any organization that uses the internet, mobile devices, software, or cloud services to operate or communicate with financial services. Most fintech apps are designed to integrate customer finances with user-friendly technology but the term often refers to Business-to-Business (B2B) technologies.
Fintech has made hundreds of applications on inroads and modified the way customers access their finances. Through mobile payment applications such as Square (SQ) — Reporting to insurance and investment companies, fintech has challenged conventional finance and banking markets and presents a possible challenge to existing, brick-and-mortar banks or financial institutions.
Initially, fintech referred to technology that was applied to banks or other financial institutions’ back-end systems but has since expanded to include a variety of other, more consumer-focused applications. Through 2020, this technology (often on your smartphone) will allow you to manage funds, trade stocks, pay for food or manage insurance, and a lot more!
Fintech’s technologies are changing the way many customers track, control, and promote their finances. In reality, people are using one or more apps to control their finances according to 2016 data. And, it looks like investors are bullish about the industry. Fintech spending increased by 18% in 2017 alone, according to CNBC.
Fintech offers a nimble alternative to engage in financial services without the need for the brick-and-mortar for the estimated nearly 2 billion people worldwide without bank accounts. And, to a large degree, that’s exactly what fintech has been built to do – provide customers with direct access to their financial lives through easy-to-use technology.
Fintech companies are incorporating innovations (such as AI, blockchain, and data science) into conventional financial industries to make them safer, quicker, and more efficient. Fintech is one of the fastest-growing tech sectors with firms innovating in virtually every finance area; from payments and loans to credit ratings and stock trading.
Fintech isn’t a new industry, it’s just one that has grown really quickly. To some extent, technology has always been part of the financial world, whether it was the advent of credit cards in the 1950s or ATMs, electronic trading floors, personal finance applications, and high-frequency trading in the following decades.
Nevertheless, some of the latest developments use machine learning algorithms, blockchain, and data science to do everything from process credit risk to run hedge funds. Well, there is now a whole category of regulatory technology called “regtech” designed to tackle the dynamic world of industry enforcement and regulatory issues like fintech.
FinTech internships aren’t very often a word you hear tossed around. While most frequently associated in recent history with technical vocations in nursing, finance, and engineering, companies in all industries have embraced internships as a recruiting method.
The advantage for companies is that they have the opportunity, through internships, to train young, energetic, and talented people in their particular field of operations. This is simply an investment for the future, because these interns may probably be tomorrow’s management who will help the company to expand. With a stable base that an internship offers, they are more likely to achieve success. There are also advantages to the person taking on the internship. Apart from acquiring valuable work experience in a field, they are interested in, at the end of it there may be a good job offer.
Research conducted by High Fliers in 2017 reports, according to The Complete University Guide, that over a third of recruiters cautioned that students with no prior work experience are unlikely to be successful in obtaining job offers. Not only that, but internships are a great way to create connections within a given industry. This could also help a person understand what they do not want to do. It will limit their attention to what area they really want to follow, which is a very critical part of a young career.
Coincidentally, this is also a long-term profit for companies. While they may have invested in interning individuals, screening out applicants who are not really involved in the specific field of business would improve the chances of finding such enthusiastic aspirants who will remain committed to the company’s success in the years ahead.
Finance and technology are two of the top 5 sectors where internships are offered. That being said, FinTech’s field is large, and it will only grow wider as technology advances and the number of financial offerings grows. And although an intern may have a passion for finance and technology, as we described above, it is important for both the applicant and the organization to know which specific area is of interest to them.
The good news is that when considering FinTech internships you don’t need to be a Software Engineer, Data Scientist, or a Web/Mobile Developer. FinTech businesses do have conventional departments such as accounting and HR which might give you the opportunity to experience this exciting and creative industry firsthand.
“FinTech” is also synonymous with “Startup” these days. Interning at a FinTech startup will not only educate the applicant about the particular product or service but will also educate the general way to operate and develop a young business. More likely the startup team would be small, and the reporting structures less rigid. Thus, interns should have access to a number of different units of industry. Getting an insight into the various departments, a FinTech intern can learn about the community as well as other important business management functions, including how to receive financing and investment, marketing, related legal aspects, accounting, business growth and the importance of adding value as part of a fairly small group.
Being part of a small team in a young FinTech startup might also encourage interns to get their ‘hands dirty’ early and make a difference. This also means that your hard work won’t go unnoticed. Not all of this will be normal in large, established companies.
As a FinTech intern, from an entrepreneurial and vocational viewpoint, you will be interacting with like-minded individuals, fostering out-of-the-box thinking. Your job is likely to be more complex and mentally exhausting as repeatable (often called mundane) tasks in a modern, digital organization can get automated very quickly.