The words “finance” and “low stress” tend not to be in the same sentence together. However, if you’re looking for a career in money management that deals with little stress, you’ve come to the right place.
In this article, we’ll show you which finance jobs you can take that are low-stress. While these jobs may not pay the most, they’re certainly low-stress enough that you may not care.
The financial industry is expected to grow 7% by 2031, which ranks about average for occupations as a whole. That means finance jobs will still be plenty, no matter what sector of finance you choose to go into.
In addition to introducing you to several fields of finance, we'll talk about what makes a job stressful and what other financial jobs are available that might be slightly more stressful. After all, it’s the definition of stress that varies not only from one job to the next but also from person to person.
Are you ready to learn more about low-stress finance jobs? Let’s get started!
What Makes a Job Low-Stress
Proper money management often helps us relieve stress, but that sometimes doesn’t translate to the person managing our money for us.
Here are some things to consider when seeking out a low-stress finance job:
- Consistent working hours (i.e. 9 to 5 or Monday through Friday)
- Job security
- Predictable workload, from hours to duties
- Routine tasks
- Flexible or generous deadlines
- High morale and lack of competitiveness
- Favorable working conditions
Defining some of these elements can look different for different people. For example, one person may find that “favorable working conditions” translates to friendly competition, while another finds that routine tasks aren’t just low-stress, they’re boring or unmanageable.
Element of Work-Life Balance
If we could all work part-time jobs but still earn the salaries we do, the work-life balance could help a lot of folks out.
Work-life balance takes on various forms, depending on individual needs:
- Flexible hours
- Limited intense situations or interactions
- Manageable workload
- Work-from-home potential
- Shorter work hours
One of the biggest pieces of career advice for millennials is to find a position that affords you the flexibility and autonomy you’re looking for.
These dividends can often outweigh any similar rewards from high-salaried positions.
Potential Financial Career Paths
As you might imagine, financial careers require a bit of education first. However, you might be surprised at how much education you need if you want a career in finance.
For example, bachelor’s degrees work well for entry-level positions to provide a basic foundation. It takes a master’s degree or even a Ph.D. to compete against others in the market and even teach the next generation.
Here’s a list of the many career paths associated with finance. It’s by no means an exhaustive list:
- Hedge fund manager
- Financial planner
- Public accounting
- Insurance agent
- Commercial banking
- Chief Financial Officer
- Venture capitalist
- Investment banking
Most financially inclined individuals have the following skills:
Many positions also require certification, depending on what you’re working on and what the organization requires. Some of these certifications are easy to obtain while others take much longer and more effort.
11 Low-Stress Jobs in Finance
Not everyone is cut out for finance jobs, but that’s where the best personal finance software comes in. If you’re passionate about finances, check out these low-stress jobs you can do to earn a living.
Many business outsourcing accounting tend to look for agencies or freelancers they can work with to take care of their finances. This is where accounting takes place.
As long as you can crunch numbers and balance a checkbook, you’re well on your way to becoming an accountant. You will need a bachelor’s in accounting or business but that doesn’t mean you have to deal with clients face-to-face.
Instead, many accountants work behind the scenes to ensure the books are in order. Sometimes accountants are referred to as bookkeepers, though the two jobs are distinctly different in many ways.
If you can find an accounting job in budgeting or consulting, these are often less stressful than other types of accounting jobs. All the same, accounting tends to pay well, especially if you set your sights on the Big 4 (who are not low-stress by any stretch of the imagination).
Does evaluating risk sound like your cup of tea? If so, you should consider becoming an actuary.
This low-stress job requires you to use your mathematical and statistical skills to calculate things like the cost of car accidents, property damage, or anything else your client might want to investigate. Most actuaries work for insurance companies, so we’re sure you can see the connection.
Actuaries may have been involved in designing your insurance plan. However, an actuary can also work for the government, banks, or even investment firms.
While you’ll need strong mathematical skills and a college degree to succeed as an actuary, this position does come with a handsome salary. Certifications from the Casualty Actuarial Society (CAS) or Society of Actuaries (SOA) may be required but it’s by doing the job that most actuaries learn the most.
Have you ever wondered who’s involved in deciding whether or not you deserve a credit card? A credit analyst is probably on the other end.
Credit analysts work in insurance, mortgage, investments, and banks. A bachelor’s in finance is often in order, along with the ability to think critically and analytically, research and make decisions, and communicate with the world at large.
A credit analyst typically completes loan applications and analyzes financial data. Companies often employ credit analysts to determine how likely it is that debtors will repay their commitments.
You probably know of a few economists if you know anything about the financial world. While some economists’ positions can be stressful if they are in the public eye, most of the time this job is relatively low-stress.
Economists work with data and numbers to predict the future of a particular company, typically their employer. These predictions come from surveys, market trends, and an overall business sense.
Many businesses, organizations, and governments hire economists, so the pay is relatively high. However, you may need a master’s degree to stand out from the fierce competition.
Instead of analyzing credit or internal purchasing practices, financial analysts comb through stores of data to help companies make better investment decisions. While the work itself can be demanding, you don’t necessarily have to work directly with clients.
The good news is that most companies will offer financial analysts on-the-job training as well. This can help you establish yourself in the financial industry and get a foot in the door before you gain experience and move up.
Skills associated with the financial analyst position include:
- Loves to research
- Communication skills
Financial analysts don’t have to make sales, which can be low-stress in itself. Many people choose a career as a financial analyst and then move up to a portfolio manager position or something similar.
Many of these jobs may sound similar enough to encompass the same duties but with minor differences. Case in point: financial analysts and financial consultants.
A financial consultant can help individuals as well as businesses who are in complex financial situations. The answers to their questions may not be easy to find but that’s where the high salary plays a part.
In a nutshell, financial consultants analyze a financial situation and provide guidance for improvement. While results are certainly expected in this regard, financial consultants are paid more for their expertise than anything else.
A financial planning and analysis (FP&A) manager typically works with a Fortune 500 company and provides recommendations based on several key performance indicators, or KPIs. These recommendations are based on intense research and data analyses.
This finance job has perhaps a more stressful environment than others on our list, depending on where you work. However, seniority can help you avoid these situations and give you more flexibility in your workload and pay.
Most FP&A managers have five to 10 years of experience. Like most of the financial advising careers on our list, FP&A managers may advise on the final decision, but they do not make it.
Sometimes called Risk Managers, insurance advisors work with individuals and businesses to help them determine which insurance plans are best worth investing in. The position pays well and is relatively low risk.
Insurance advisors can handle questions about your insurance policy, from coverage to comparing it to other plans. These individuals must be diligent and trustworthy to find and retain clients.
In addition to communication and problem-solving, insurance advisors should have immense product knowledge. When it comes to advising clients on how they can maximize their insurance benefits, greater knowledge comes with larger rewards.
Audits help companies and organizations understand what’s going on from within. If you’re looking for a low-stress finance job that could satisfy your curiosity, an internal auditor could be your new job title.
Internal auditors are part of the compliance sector and validate financial transactions across the board. That means taking a look at receipts, benefits, invoices, payroll, and more.
The research can be fun but it’s presenting your data to your employer that can be most difficult. However, most projects are small enough to be manageable and lacking in stress.
Figuring out our own finances can be hard, but telling someone else what to do with their money can be easier. If you like helping people manage their money and don’t want to deal with stress, you might consider a personal financial advisor.
People seek out a personal financial advisor for several reasons, including budgeting, investing, and saving for retirement. You’ll need a finance degree and potentially some certification to become a personal financial advisor, but you can easily make a six-figure salary.
As the title suggests, this type of financial career involves managing a portfolio. Many portfolio managers, however, have a team of analysts on staff to help them conduct their business.
If you’re not sure where to start in finance, a portfolio manager can be an easy way to get experience in the industry without much stress. The job pays well and often includes a bonus as well.
Many aspects can make finance a stressful job. For example, working under strict deadlines, putting in 10 to 12-hour days, and constantly competing with your colleagues can make for a stressful finance job.
You can decrease stress at work by determining what part of your work-life balance is not fully to your liking. Adjusting to this need can take time but it’s often worth it to enjoy the things you love.
Many people find it worth it to take lower-paying jobs for less stress at work. It all depends on what your priorities are and what goals you plan on achieving.
Stressful jobs can have several effects, from mental health to time spent with loved ones. While some people thrive in stressful jobs, the atmosphere is not for everyone.
Namaste and Your Finances
We typically don’t want to think about our finances when we’re relaxing, especially if things are tough. However, there are ways you can put your financial knowledge to work by taking low-stress finance jobs that put your health above your pay.
We hope this article has helped you to see which low-stress finance jobs you can do to make a living but live at the same time. After all, we’ve only got one go-around.
The good news is that many jobs have recently undergone a shift from strict in-office environments to working from home and the flexibility such an arrangement offers. If you’re looking for a new low-stress finance job, be sure to keep these values in mind.
Which low-stress finance job will you try?