Financial Examiner Job Description
Financial examiners review the financial activities of companies and financial institutions to verify that their activities are compliant with government laws and regulations.
Financial examiners spend most of their work days reviewing financial documents. Balance sheets, expense accounts, tax returns, operating income, and loan documentation are a few of the documents that financial examiners look at while they’re evaluating a company’s finances.
In some cases, financial examiners need to travel to visit businesses so they can review their records on site. Depending on the size of the project and the level of analysis required, examiners may need to be away from home for extended periods of time.
There are two basic types of financial examiners. Most work in either consumer compliance or risk scoping.
Financial examiners who work in consumer compliance monitor financial institutions’ lending activities to make sure that all lenders are being treated fairly. Basically, they act as advocates on behalf on consumers. They make sure that banks are loaning money to qualified applicants, and that they don’t discriminate based on ethnicity, gender, or other factors.
Financial examiners who work in risk scoping make sure that financial institutions are making safe loans, and that they maintain cash reserves large enough to cover any losses. These examiners play an important role in making sure that our financial system remains stable.
Financial examiners are commonly employed by financial and insurance organizations. There are also many opportunities for employment with state and federal government agencies.
Most financial examiners work full time, and are often able to maintain regular business hours. However, working overtime may be required when working on a particularly large project or when traveling for work.
How to Become a Financial Examiner
A minimum of a bachelor’s degree is required for most entry-level financial examiner positions. Economics, accounting, finance, or business are good choices for a college major.
While a bachelor’s degree can get you in the door, you should seriously consider getting a master’s degree if you want to have a long term career in this field. Many employers require a master’s degree in accounting or business before they will consider you for management positions.
Once hired, most employers provide on the job training where the new hire works under the supervision of a senior financial examiner. During training, they learn about the policies of the business, and how to perform their basic job duties. Depending on the organization and the complexity of the position, the training period can last anywhere between a month and a year.
To get some financial examiner positions, you will need to become a Certified Public Accountant (CPA). To become a CPA, you will need to have a master’s degree and pass the Uniform CPA Examination. This exam is administered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, and you can learn more about it on their website.
If you’re still in high school and you’re thinking about pursuing a career as a financial examiner, you should take as many math and business-related courses as you can. These courses will provide you with the mathematical background you will need for a successful career in this occupation.
There are currently 29,300 financial examiners in the United States, with 1,410 new financial examiner job openings created each year.
Financial Examiner jobs are not expected to see much growth beyond their current levels in the next decade.
Financial Examiner Salaries
Financial Examiner salaries can vary depending on your experience, the location, company, industry, and benefits provided. Nationwide, most financial examiners make between $56,000 – $105,500 per year, or $26.92 – $50.72 per hour.