Is an MBA in Finance Worth It?

If you’re interested in pursuing a career in business, you may be asking: Is an MBA in finance worth it?  

An MBA with a Finance specialization is a great way to expand your skills in two directions at once. Instead of focusing solely on business-related principles as you would in a general MBA program, or only financial topics like in Master's in Accounting and Financial Management, an MBA with a Specialization in Finance can give you the opportunity to build up your abilities in both areas and help prepare you to pursue careers in either field.

In this article, we'll take a look at the reasons why you might choose to earn an MBA in Finance and explore some of the things you can do once you’ve earned your degree and more in the following sections:

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Why Choose an MBA with a Specialization in Finance?

There are a few reasons you might choose a finance-focused MBA over other degree paths. When comparing an MBA with a Specialization in Finance to similar degrees, two closely related options are a Master's in Accounting and Financial Management or a general MBA

A Master's in Accounting and Financial Management has a focus on finance and incorporates elements of accounting. It also tends to be a good degree choice for people who are interested in working in the wider world of investments or financial management.

A general MBA will cover topics associated with business administration and management, such as collaboration, leadership skills and high-level business concepts. People who pursue a general MBA are typically students who want to eventually work in a business environment as a manager or team leader.

In an MBA with a Specialization in Finance, you have the opportunity to learn both high-level finance and business administration skills, allowing you to become a more knowledgeable candidate for either field. It also may help you keep your options open when searching for employment, as the leadership elements of an MBA program are designed to help you prepare to pursue management-level positions.

Is an MBA in Finance Hard?

While the perceived level of difficulty of any program is subjective, an MBA with a Specialization in Finance should be no more difficult to complete than any other MBA or master's degree. Students who are comfortable with math and general business concepts may have an easier time grasping the concepts that are taught in this type of program. That doesn’t mean, however, that students without a background in either of these areas can’t excel if they study diligently and take advantage of the student support resources their school provides.

There are some soft skills, however, that may help you as you work toward a career in finance. The executive recruiting website Ladders offers a list of traits that quality finance job candidates should have. Here are 5 of them:

  • Innate problem solver: Employers rely on executives who will rise to challenges. A top candidate in finance takes action to find solutions regardless of the situation. If problem solving comes naturally to you, include examples of how you’ve demonstrated this skill on your resume.
  • Analytical skills: In the finance field, the ability to demonstrate logical thinking in gathering and analyzing a variety of information is a necessity.
  • Leadership: Project management, effective communication, teamwork and many other day-to-day tasks involve a strong foundation in leadership. In the finance sector, even entry-level candidates are required to have a high level of leadership skills.
  • Adaptable communication: Communication skills are always vital. Employers need candidates who are able to communicate with managers, coworkers and clients, adapting their communication efforts to the channels, platforms and styles of those they interact with.
  • Professionalism: Quality finance job candidates should know how to adapt to different environments while maintaining professionalism in all situations. A formal tone tends to establish trust and consistency, something that is frequently sought-after in finance professionals.

What are the Benefits of an MBA with a Specialization in Finance?

Since an MBA with a Specialization in Finance covers both business and finance concepts, it can help you build the skills needed to pursue relevant careers in either field. Having this range of skills, along with the versatility of this type of degree, helps give you the ability to move between industries should you ever wish to change your career. As a graduate degree that’s geared toward preparing you for leadership roles, it may help increase the types of jobs you’re eligible to apply for.

Is Finance a Good Specialization for an MBA?

Finance can be a good MBA specialization for you if you're interested in pursuing a career in this dynamic field. Financial concepts are especially important to understand if you hope to work in a high-level position at any company. Having a degree that helps you understand complex financial principles can help prepare you to convey that information to shareholders and board members.

Career Projections for Financial Professionals

If you’re seeking a management role at a large company in an area like finance or investment banking, earning an MBA is a great consideration because its broader coverage of core business concepts teaches analytical and leadership skills that can help prepare you for opportunities across a number of industries and leadership roles. According to Investopedia, MBAs are increasingly being found in mid- and upper-level management roles in industries like healthcare, where changes in insurance, government regulation and patient record-keeping present financial and operational challenges.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS),the occupational outlook for financial analysts is a positive one. Overall employment of financial analysts is projected to grow at rate of 9% on a national level from 2021 to 2031, faster than the average for all occupations1. According to the BLS, industries with the highest levels of employment for financial and investment analysts in 2021 included securities, commodity contracts and other financial investments and related activities; management of companies and enterprises; credit intermediation and related activities; insurance carriers and management and scientific and technical consulting services. 

Expanding Your Network and Supporting Your Career Journey

According to Indeed, many employers hire MBA graduates because of their ability to handle complex issues and adapt to changing environments. This alone is a practical reason to earn one. In instances where having an MBA is not a minimum requirement for the role, the degree may help you stand out against non-MBA candidates.

Earning an MBA may also help you increase your professional network, develop your world perspective and help to differentiate you as a job candidate. Indeed also notes that a well-developed professional network is vital to your pursuit of a successful career in financial management. An MBA, like other degree programs at DeVry, can provide several networking opportunities in and out of the classroom, even when that classroom is a virtual one.

Networking opportunities often begin with alumni associations. At DeVry, our students enjoy complimentary Alumni Association membership, and through our Alumni Career Compact, graduates can attend virtual events and take advantage of career development resources like career advising and 1-to-1 career coaching to support their lifelong career journeys.

Earning an MBA can also give you insight into how the global marketplace operates and provide powerful experiences that enhance your understanding of different cultures and business practices. These are essential in workplaces with greater diversity.

What Can I Do after I Earn my MBA with a Specialization in Finance?

Once you've earned an MBA with a Specialization in Finance, you can start your job search. Some of the jobs that graduates of our MBA with a Specialization in Finance degree might consider include:

  • Business Manager
  • Financial Analyst
  • General Manager
  • Investment Fundamentals and Security Analysis
  • Store Manager

Keep in mind that these jobs are not standardized across the industry, and the application requirements may vary from company to company. Learn more about Careers in Finance.

If you're interested in learning more about how an MBA can help you work toward a career in finance, then check out DeVry's MBA with a Specialization in Finance. Contact us to get working toward a new career.

1Growth projected on a national level. Local growth will vary by location. https://www.bls.gov/ooh/business-and-financial/financial-analysts.htm#tab-1