Career Advice: Why Payments Is The Place To Be

25 June 2019 By Alastair Cleland

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​Fast-paced, innovation-led and ideal for ambitions professionals: working in payments has numerous benefits. We review what makes payments careers so attractive.

To many people outside the industry, payments still has a pretty boring reputation, perhaps even a cloudy one. Realistically, if you don’t work in payments, do you know (or even care) what happens behind the scenes to make your shopping or banking experience work?

Do you equate a career in payments with traditional, stuffy, ‘boring bankers’, or perhaps not even realise that there is a growing and extremely diverse range of businesses operating in the payments sphere, with a massive array of great opportunities to offer?

Some of the legacy perceptions are certainly changing as more consumer-facing innovations such as digital wallets, wearables, IoT, biometrics and AI gain awareness and uptake. But the industry is still suffering from a skills shortage – a painful shortfall for employers, but an incredible opportunity for candidates looking for their next career move.

Whether you’re seeking your next opportunity from within, or outside the industry, it’s worth reading our top 5 reasons why it’s an exciting time to work in payments.

01 The fast pace of change:

Consider how you banked 5 years ago compared with how you transact now. In another 5 years that will look very different again. The same goes for retail transactions, telecoms, transport and an increasing range of other day to day payments-related activities. Virtual currencies, automatic replenishment of your fridge contents, AI-driven bank branches in retail outlets….all of these are in development already, being driven largely by companies in the payments space.

02 Innovation is top of mind:

Transformation and innovation are essential in today’s payments industry and players across the industry are seeking ways to stand out from the competition. Watches you can pay with, checkout-free stores, fingerprint approval of payments…the list of innovations goes on. There are some great opportunities to contribute to this transformation process and play a part in developing cutting edge payments technology and user experiences that will shape tomorrow’s commerce and banking experiences.

03 Specialists are sought after:

Payments companies are no longer just banks and processors, BigTechs, FinTechs, focused startups, bitcoin operators, software vendors, consultancies, legal and compliance experts (and many, many more) make up the payments industry. Specialist businesses and specialist roles are becoming more and more necessary to make sure that companies can deliver against their innovation and quality needs. Those who work in Customer Experience, Solutions Architecture, Cyber Security, Data Analytics and a range of other specialisms are now extremely sought after and can command their own career path.

04 Abundant training opportunities:

Where there’s a skills shortage, there’s a training opportunity. Payments businesses need to adapt their business models and their internal skill sets to be able to compete and remain relevant in this changing industry. That means investing in the right people, helping to nurture and retain them as their business changes. If you like to learn, payments is for you!

05 Long term future:

Everyone will always need to pay for things and the way consumers pay is diversifying (near enough) by the day. The payments industry is growing, in size, in value and in diversity. Companies from adjacent sectors such as gaming, digital services, retail and telecommunications are all entering the payments space, recognising the future potential of the industry. As this evolution continues, the variety and availability of career opportunities will undoubtedly increase.


Start Today: Explore Careers In Payments

If you’ve never considered a career in payments before – now’s the time! And whether you’re already somewhere in this vast and varied industry or not, talking to a specialist payments recruiter can help you work out where the best opportunities are for you.