There are currently more vacancies than there are jobseekers. Good news if you are taking your first steps on the labour market now! But where to start? And what salary can you expect in your first job? 

Starting off with a permanent contract probably sounds like a plan to you. And that is of course possible. No less than 83% of all current finance vacancies offer a permanent contract, and we see this increasing every quarter. But if you do not yet know exactly what you want, it may be wise to start with a temporary or interim contract for a certain period. This gives you the opportunity to sample different jobs and get to know the ins and outs of several organisations, allowing you to figure out what you like doing best and what you want to continue doing. Moreover, many organisations offer a permanent contract soon after you have worked on an interim basis for a brief period. 

Have you recently graduated, or will you be graduating soon? Then you probably would also like to know what salary you can expect in your first job in finance. 

Thomas Vieuxjean, Senior Consultant at staffing specialist Walters People, explains what salary graduates and professionals with up to 3 years' experience can expect in a range of finance roles.  

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Accounting 

When starting a career as a Junior Accountant or as an Assistant Accountant handling accounts payable and accounts receivable, you can expect a minimum gross monthly salary of 2000 EUR. Thomas: "Some organisations even offer starters a bit more. In large international organisations, the salary for starters positions in accounting can even amount to 2300 to 2400 EUR gross per month. 

If a job as a General Ledger Accountant or Credit Collector appeals to you, graduates can count on a salary between 2000 and 2600 EUR gross per month." 

Banking & insurance  

Thomas: "Have you always dreamed of working in the banking sector? A job as a Back Office Employee or Middle Office Employee is a great position to start your career in banking." If you start in a back-office position, you can count on a gross monthly salary between 2300 and 2600 EUR per month. In a middle office position, the gross starting salary is slightly higher, i.e. 2400 to 2800 EUR per month. 

Are you eager to learn with a commercial mindset and demonstrating effective communication skills? As a starting Financial Advisor, you are in daily contact with clients, offering them a tailor-made solution. Your commercial feeling helps you to further expand your own client portfolio. For this, you can count on a gross salary between 2100 and 2800 EUR per month. 

"Within the insurance world, the demand for Insurance Specialists is currently extremely high. Working in your own region and having numerous career opportunities, are only a few of the advantages that come with such a job. As a starting Insurance Specialist, you can count on a gross monthly salary between 2000 and 2500 EUR," says Thomas. 

Of course, on top of this salary, the banking sector also offers many other extra-legal benefits, as well as the opportunity to telework multiple days per week.  

Finance 

"The number of vacancies in finance has never been as high as it is now. Even starters have a wide range of interesting finance jobs to choose from. A first job within a Big4, for example, is an excellent start to your career." As an External or Internal Auditor, you can count on a salary between 2400 and 3200 EUR gross per month. In addition to fringe benefits, most organisations also include a company car in their salary package. 

Do you have a strong analytical mindset? Then you might aspire a job as Business Analyst or Financial Analyst. Depending on the organisation you work for, as a starter you will receive a gross salary between 2400 and 3200 EUR per month. 

Consulting is in your blood? As an external consultant, your expertise and financial insights are highly valuable to companies looking for help in the realisation of their projects. As a starter in this function, you can count on a gross monthly salary between 2100 and 2500 EUR.  

Student job 

Are you still studying, or would you rather first earn some money as a student before starting in a permanent job? "There is nothing wrong with a student job in the local supermarket or restaurant, but realise that a student job within your field of study really stands out on your CV. Moreover, it allows you to get to know the business world and the job opportunities that are out there", Thomas says. A student's salary depends on your age, but it should be between 1600 and 1950 EUR gross per month. 

Look beyond salary

"When a potential employer makes you a salary offer, they always talk about gross monthly amounts. Have you had multiple job interviews and received several job offers? Then it is wise to look beyond this gross monthly amount they mention before deciding which job offer you will accept. Most organisations also offer numerous fringe benefits such as luncheon vouchers, a transportation allowance or a company car, a mobile phone, an insurance package, a laptop, eco vouchers, etc.  

Also consider the practical side when comparing job offers: is the employer easily accessible or do you lose a lot of time commuting? Is hybrid working common within the organisation? Are the working hours fixed or flexible? 

During the job interview, also ask what your future will look like within the organisation. Are there, for example, training opportunities? Do they offer a personal development plan for graduates and new joiners? 

Having a clear answer to these questions will allow you to thoroughly compare several job offers and determine for yourself what you find most important, so you can make the right choice", concludes Thomas. 
 

Want to know more? 

View our latest jobs in finance or discover our best tips and advice for graduates.  
For more information on salaries in finance, consult our free digital salary survey tool.

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