Risk Analyst

Risk Analyst

Risk Analysis is the assessment of the impacts of risks through the analysis of historical data. This analysis helps safeguard financial service providers from the potentially negative impacts of changes in an organization’s external environment. Risk Analysts conduct research to understand a variety of risks (e.g. credit, market and operational risks) that could potentially affect their organizations.

ROLE-AT-A-GLANCE
Binoculars
Demand Outlook
*

Due to heightened focus on regulatory compliance and increasing complexity of financial products

Diploma
Education & Credentials
*

College/Undergraduate Degree Required.

Data chart
Quantitative Skills Required
*
Group of people
Interpersonal Skills & Relationship Management
*
Multiple devices Specialized Technology Skills
*
Desktop area Work Environment

Office/Varied. Working with specific lines of business; Hours may be unpredictable.

ROLE-AT-A-GLANCE
Binoculars
Demand Outlook
*

Due to heightened focus on regulatory compliance and increasing complexity of financial products

Diploma
Education & Credentials
*

College/Undergraduate Degree Required.

Data chart
Quantitative Skills Required
*
Group of people
Interpersonal Skills & Relationship Management
*
Multiple devices Specialized Technology Skills *
Desktop area Work Environment

Office/Varied. Working with specific lines of business; Hours may be unpredictable.


WHAT IT IS

Key Role Dimensions

A combination of quantitative and qualitative perspectives: Extract high-level, big picture summaries from detailed data and turn them into concise, meaningful reports for management or executives.

Using sophisticated software and programs: Use increasingly sophisticated software tools to analyze massive amounts of data and extract patterns and trends.

Interfacing with a number of other functions within an organization: Work both independently and in collaboration with a broader team that may include front-line staff (e.g. traders and Financial Advisors) and other internal departments (e.g. internal audit, accounting, IT and portfolio management).

Focus Areas

Depending on the size of the organization, Risk Analysts may work broadly or may be assigned to one of three major risk categories:

  • Credit Risk Analysts: Focus on the risk associated with lending money.
  • Market Risk Analysts: Focus on the risk of uncertainty in the economy and market.
  • Operational Risk Analysts: Focus on the risk in an organization related to processes, systems, business operations and people.

WHAT IT TAKES TO SUCCEED

Key Job Accountabilities

Risk Analysts generally:

Research, gather and review internal and external data relevant to their projects:

  • Source and review data specific to the project’s subject matter.
  • Consult with Risk Modellers to create statistical outputs in support of a project.
  • Develop an understanding of the potential impacts on the business/organization from the defined risk.

Effectively report on the outputs of their research:

  • Develop risk reports that summarize risk exposure and suggested mitigation steps.
  • Support business lines and leaders to interpret and respond to the identified risk exposure.

Maintain awareness of the risk landscape:

  • Stay current on risk management changes and trends.
  • Ensure that risk standards are current and consistent among all tools and reports.

Knowledge, Skills & Experience

Must-haves:

  • Ability to develop reports that summarize complex data into meaningful analysis that can be used by decision makers
  • Expertise at probing and identifying solutions collaboratively with others
  • Strong quantitative and analytic modelling skills
  • Advanced computing skills and ability to perform basic programming
  • Strong knowledge of risk and credit management in the financial sector
  • Strong knowledge of regulatory and legislative policy and procedures for the financial sector
  • Excellent research, analysis and reporting skills
  • Demonstrated capabilities in data interpretation, sense-making and communication
  • Proven ability to be proactive and goal-orientated

Nice-to-haves:

  • Previous experience as a commercial underwriter, claims adjuster or quantitative research associate

Education & Credentials

Entry-level positions typically require:

  • College diploma or
  • Undergraduate university degree

In the fields of:

  • Mathematics
  • Engineering
  • Finance
  • Actuarial Science
  • Risk Management
  • Mathematical Finance

Senior positions may require:

  • Graduate degree

In the fields of:

  • Information Systems
  • Statistics
  • Business Administration
  • Mathematical Finance

Employers may require candidates to possess one or more of the following designations:


WHERE IT CAN TAKE YOU

Career Pathways

There are a number of pathways open to Risk Analysts through:

Increased Seniority: If you wish to pursue managerial or supervisory roles, many organizations have a variety of leadership positions in risk management such as:

  • Senior Risk Manager
  • Director of Risk Policy
  • VP Risk Management
  • Chief Risk Officer

Lateral Career Move: Given the versatility of the quantitative skills you develop as a Risk Analyst, other career options include lateral moves into compliance or policy roles.

Future Trends & Impacts

There are several external factors and environmental trends that can influence the qualifications and demand for this role:

  • Regulation: Shifts in regulation (e.g. Basel, Sarbanes-Oxley) set rigorous risk requirements that have significant implications on the demand for Risk Analysts.
  • Technology: Advancements in technology or tools used to identify risk require Risk Analysts to develop additional know-how and skills on an ongoing basis.


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