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Top 12 Financial Analyst Skills to Put on Your Resume

In the competitive field of financial analysis, having a standout resume is crucial to landing your dream job. Highlighting your top financial analyst skills is essential, demonstrating to potential employers your expertise and capability in navigating complex financial landscapes and contributing to strategic decision-making.

Top 12 Financial Analyst Skills to Put on Your Resume

Financial Analyst Skills

  1. Excel
  2. SQL
  3. Python
  4. Tableau
  5. Power BI
  6. R
  7. QuickBooks
  8. SAP
  9. Bloomberg Terminal
  10. VBA
  11. MATLAB
  12. Salesforce

1. Excel

Excel is a spreadsheet software developed by Microsoft, widely used by financial analysts for data analysis, financial modeling, budgeting, and reporting due to its powerful calculation, graphing tools, and pivot table features.

Why It's Important

Excel is crucial for Financial Analysts as it enables efficient data analysis, financial modeling, and forecasting, facilitating informed decision-making and strategic financial planning.

How to Improve Excel Skills

Improving Excel skills, especially for Financial Analysts, involves enhancing efficiency, accuracy, and advanced data analysis capabilities. Consider these steps:

  1. Excel Formulas and Functions Mastery: Master essential financial formulas (e.g., NPV, IRR, PMT) and advanced functions like INDEX-MATCH, OFFSET, and array formulas. ExcelJet offers a comprehensive guide.

  2. PivotTables and PivotCharts: Utilize PivotTables and PivotCharts for summarizing, analyzing, exploring, and presenting your data. Microsoft Support has tutorials specific to these features.

  3. Data Analysis and Visualization: Improve your data analysis and visualization skills. Learn to use tools like Power Query, Power Pivot, and advanced charting techniques. Excel Campus provides tutorials on these topics.

  4. VBA and Macros: Learn to automate repetitive tasks and custom functions using VBA and Macros. Chandoo offers beginner to advanced VBA resources.

  5. Keyboard Shortcuts: Increase your efficiency drastically by mastering Excel keyboard shortcuts. ExcelJet offers a comprehensive list.

  6. Financial Modeling: Develop your financial modeling skills to create accurate and robust models. Corporate Finance Institute provides resources and courses on financial modeling.

  7. Continuous Learning: Excel is constantly updating. Stay informed about the latest features and updates. Microsoft Excel Tech Community is a good place to start.

  8. Online Courses and Certifications: Consider taking advanced Excel courses or obtaining certifications from platforms like Coursera, Udemy, or directly from Microsoft.

By focusing on these areas, you can significantly improve your Excel skills, making your financial analysis more efficient, accurate, and impactful.

How to Display Excel Skills on Your Resume

How to Display Excel Skills on Your Resume

2. SQL

SQL (Structured Query Language) is a programming language used for managing and manipulating databases, enabling Financial Analysts to efficiently retrieve, update, insert, and delete data to analyze financial information and make data-driven decisions.

Why It's Important

SQL is essential for a Financial Analyst because it enables efficient data retrieval, manipulation, and analysis from large databases, facilitating accurate financial forecasting, reporting, and decision-making.

How to Improve SQL Skills

Improving your SQL skills as a Financial Analyst involves understanding both the technical aspects of SQL and how to apply them effectively to financial data analysis. Here are concise steps and resources to help you enhance your SQL capabilities:

  1. Master the Basics: Ensure you have a solid foundation in SQL basics such as SELECT statements, WHERE clauses, GROUP BY clauses, and ORDER BY clauses. This foundation is crucial for effective data manipulation and analysis.

  2. Understand Data Aggregation: Learn how to use aggregate functions like SUM, AVG, MAX, MIN, and COUNT for summarizing financial data, which is essential for reporting and analysis.

  3. Get Comfortable with Joins: Knowing how to merge data from multiple tables using INNER JOIN, LEFT JOIN, RIGHT JOIN, and FULL JOIN is critical for comprehensive financial analysis.

  4. Practice Complex Queries: Develop skills for writing more complex SQL queries that involve subqueries, nested queries, and common table expressions (CTEs). These are crucial for advanced data analysis projects.

  5. Learn Window Functions: Understanding window functions can significantly enhance your data analysis capabilities, enabling you to perform calculations across sets of rows that are related to the current row.

  6. Optimize SQL Queries: As your SQL queries become more complex, learning how to optimize them for performance becomes crucial. This includes understanding indexing and execution plans.

  7. Apply SQL in Financial Analysis Scenarios: Practice applying your SQL skills to real-world financial datasets. This can involve analyzing financial statements, calculating financial ratios, and forecasting.

    • Kaggle (for finding financial datasets)
  8. Stay Updated and Engage with the Community: SQL and database technologies evolve, so staying updated with the latest trends and engaging with the community can provide new insights and techniques.

By following these steps and utilizing the provided resources, you can significantly improve your SQL skills, making you a more efficient and effective Financial Analyst.

How to Display SQL Skills on Your Resume

How to Display SQL Skills on Your Resume

3. Python

Python is a versatile and widely-used programming language that enables financial analysts to automate repetitive tasks, analyze financial data, and develop complex financial models and algorithms efficiently.

Why It's Important

Python is crucial for a Financial Analyst due to its ability to efficiently handle and analyze large datasets, automate repetitive tasks, and develop complex financial models, thereby enhancing analytical accuracy and decision-making speed.

How to Improve Python Skills

To improve your Python skills as a Financial Analyst, focus on mastering libraries relevant to data analysis, financial modeling, and visualization. Here's a concise guide:

  1. Learn Pandas: Essential for data manipulation and analysis. Start with the official Pandas tutorials.

  2. Understand NumPy: Fundamental for numerical computations. Explore the NumPy quickstart guide.

  3. Get proficient with Matplotlib & Seaborn: Crucial for data visualization. Check out Matplotlib tutorials and Seaborn guide.

  4. Dive into financial libraries: Familiarize yourself with libraries like yfinance for market data. Start with the yfinance documentation.

  5. Practice with real-world datasets: Apply your skills on datasets from Kaggle.

  6. Stay updated and involved in the Python community: Join forums like Stack Overflow and follow PyData for the latest in Python for data analysis.

  7. Enhance your skills through projects: Build projects that solve financial analysis problems or automate tasks. This practical application solidifies learning and demonstrates your capabilities.

By focusing on these areas, you'll significantly improve your Python skills, making your financial analysis more efficient and insightful.

How to Display Python Skills on Your Resume

How to Display Python Skills on Your Resume

4. Tableau

Tableau is a powerful data visualization tool that enables financial analysts to create interactive and shareable dashboards, transforming complex financial data into insightful and easily understandable graphical representations, thereby aiding in data-driven decision-making.

Why It's Important

Tableau is important for a Financial Analyst as it enables efficient data visualization, simplifying complex data analysis, and aids in making informed, data-driven financial decisions quickly.

How to Improve Tableau Skills

To improve your Tableau skills as a Financial Analyst, focus on the following short and concise strategies:

  1. Master Data Preparation: Ensure your data is clean and organized before importing it into Tableau. This enhances accuracy and efficiency in your analysis. Consider using Tableau Prep Builder for data preparation.

  2. Understand Financial KPIs: Deeply understand key financial metrics and how they can be visualized effectively in Tableau. Tailor your dashboards to highlight these KPIs clearly.

  3. Advanced Calculations: Develop your skills in creating complex calculations within Tableau to analyze financial data more deeply. This includes understanding Table Calculations, LOD expressions, and date calculations.

  4. Dashboard Design Principles: Focus on the principles of effective dashboard design to make your financial reports user-friendly. This includes keeping designs simple, using appropriate colors, and adopting a mobile-first design approach when necessary.

  5. Use of Parameters and Filters: Learn how to use parameters and filters to make your dashboards interactive. This allows users to drill down into specifics and customize views according to their needs.

  6. Continuous Learning and Community Engagement: Stay updated with the latest Tableau features and best practices by engaging with the Tableau Community (Tableau Community Forums) and exploring resources on Tableau Training and Tutorials.

  7. Practice with Real Financial Data: Apply your skills by working with real or simulated financial datasets to create reports and dashboards that could be used in genuine financial analysis scenarios.

By focusing on these areas, you can significantly improve your Tableau skills and become more efficient and impactful in your role as a Financial Analyst.

How to Display Tableau Skills on Your Resume

How to Display Tableau Skills on Your Resume

5. Power BI

Power BI is a business analytics tool by Microsoft that enables financial analysts to visualize data, generate reports, and derive insights for informed decision-making.

Why It's Important

Power BI is important for a Financial Analyst because it enables efficient data analysis and visualization, providing insights and trends for informed financial decision-making and strategy development.

How to Improve Power BI Skills

Improving Power BI skills, especially for a Financial Analyst, can significantly enhance data analysis and reporting capabilities. Here are some concise tips:

  1. Master DAX (Data Analysis Expressions): Learn to create complex calculations and measures to analyze data in-depth. DAX Guide.

  2. Utilize Power Query: Efficiently transform and prepare your financial data for analysis. Power Query Documentation.

  3. Explore Power BI Service: Share insights and collaborate with your team online. Power BI Service Features.

  4. Incorporate Advanced Visualizations: Use custom visuals to represent financial data more effectively. Custom Visuals Gallery.

  5. Stay Updated: Regularly follow the Power BI Blog for the latest features and best practices. Power BI Blog.

  6. Participate in Community Forums: Engage with the Power BI community for tips, tricks, and troubleshooting. Power BI Community.

By focusing on these areas, a Financial Analyst can significantly improve their Power BI skills and contribute more effectively to data-driven decision-making.

How to Display Power BI Skills on Your Resume

How to Display Power BI Skills on Your Resume

6. R

R is a programming language and software environment used for statistical analysis, data visualization, and modeling, widely applied in financial analysis for predictive modeling, portfolio optimization, risk assessment, and quantitative trading strategies.

Why It's Important

R is important for a Financial Analyst because it offers powerful statistical and graphical tools to analyze financial data, forecast trends, and develop quantitative models, enhancing decision-making and strategy formulation.

How to Improve R Skills

Improving your R skills, especially as a Financial Analyst, involves a combination of enhancing your understanding of statistics, programming, and domain-specific knowledge. Here are concise steps with resources:

  1. Master the Basics: Start with a solid foundation in R syntax and basic programming concepts.

  2. Understand Data Manipulation: Learn to efficiently manipulate data using packages like dplyr and data.table.

  3. Get Proficient in Data Visualization: Develop skills in data presentation using ggplot2.

  4. Learn Financial Analysis Specific Packages: Familiarize yourself with R packages tailored for financial data analysis like quantmod, PerformanceAnalytics, and TTR.

  5. Enhance Statistical Modeling Skills: Delve deeper into statistical models and techniques relevant to financial analysis.

  6. Practice with Projects: Apply your skills on real-world datasets or participate in competitions.

    • Websites like Kaggle offer datasets and competitions that can enhance your portfolio.
  7. Stay Updated and Network: Follow blogs, forums, and join communities.

  8. Optimize Your Code for Performance: Learn to write efficient R code, especially for large datasets.

    • The Advanced R book by Hadley Wickham covers performance optimization in detail.

Dedicating time to learn and apply each of these aspects will significantly improve your R programming skills, making you a more proficient financial analyst in R.

How to Display R Skills on Your Resume

How to Display R Skills on Your Resume

7. QuickBooks

QuickBooks is an accounting software designed for small to medium-sized businesses, offering features for managing income, expenses, payroll, and financial reporting, useful for financial analysis and decision-making.

Why It's Important

QuickBooks is crucial for a Financial Analyst as it streamlines financial data management, enhances accuracy in financial reporting, and facilitates efficient analysis and forecasting, enabling informed decision-making.

How to Improve QuickBooks Skills

Improving QuickBooks for a Financial Analyst involves streamlining financial data analysis, enhancing reporting capabilities, and integrating advanced analytical tools. Here are concise ways to achieve these improvements:

  1. Automate Data Entry: Use data automation tools like Transaction Pro to speed up data entry and reduce errors.
  2. Customize Reports: Utilize QuickBooks' advanced reporting features to create custom reports that meet specific analytical needs. Learn more about customization from the QuickBooks tutorials.
  3. Integrate with Excel: Use the Excel Integration Refresh Tool to seamlessly export QuickBooks data into Excel, enabling more complex data analysis.
  4. Use Advanced Analytics Tools: Integrate QuickBooks with advanced analytics platforms such as Tableau or Power BI for deeper insights.
  5. Enhance Data Security: Implement stronger security measures and regularly update them to protect financial data. QuickBooks provides guidelines on security best practices.
  6. Stay Updated: Keep QuickBooks software up to date to benefit from the latest features and improvements. Regular updates can be managed through the QuickBooks Update page.

By focusing on these areas, a Financial Analyst can significantly enhance the functionality and analytical capabilities of QuickBooks.

How to Display QuickBooks Skills on Your Resume

How to Display QuickBooks Skills on Your Resume

8. SAP

SAP is a global software corporation that develops enterprise software to manage business operations and customer relations, including financials, logistics, and human resources. For a Financial Analyst, SAP provides tools for financial planning, analysis, and consolidation, enabling efficient management of financial data, reporting, and compliance.

Why It's Important

SAP is important for a Financial Analyst as it provides integrated, real-time financial management and reporting tools, enabling accurate financial forecasting, efficient budgeting, and effective financial analysis and decision-making.

How to Improve SAP Skills

Improving your SAP skills, particularly as a Financial Analyst, involves a blend of understanding the software's functionalities and applying best practices for financial data analysis and reporting. Here are concise tips and resources:

  1. Understand SAP Financial Modules: Deepen your knowledge in modules like FI (Financial Accounting) and CO (Controlling). These are core to financial operations and reporting.

  2. SAP Training and Certification: Consider official SAP training and certification programs. SAP's Learning Hub provides access to vast resources tailored to different roles, including financial analysts.

  3. Practice with Real Data: Hands-on experience is invaluable. Utilize SAP's training systems or your organization's sandbox environment to practice with real or simulated financial data.

  4. Learn SAP Reporting Tools: Enhance your skills in using SAP's reporting and analytics tools. Familiarize yourself with SAP Fiori and SAP BusinessObjects for advanced reporting and data visualization.

  5. Engage with the SAP Community: Join the SAP Community to ask questions, share knowledge, and stay updated on new features and best practices.

  6. Stay Updated: The financial and tech landscapes are dynamic. Keep abreast of the latest SAP updates and financial regulatory changes impacting SAP processes.

  7. Cross-functional Understanding: Gain a basic understanding of related SAP modules and functions (e.g., MM, SD) to see how financial data integrates across the business.

  8. Time Management and ERP Workflow Understanding: Prioritize tasks within SAP, and understand how workflows and approvals are managed to streamline financial processes.

By focusing on these areas, you can significantly enhance your SAP proficiency, making you more effective and efficient in your role as a Financial Analyst.

How to Display SAP Skills on Your Resume

How to Display SAP Skills on Your Resume

9. Bloomberg Terminal

The Bloomberg Terminal is a comprehensive financial software system that provides real-time financial data, trading news, and analytics to financial professionals, including analysts, enabling them to make informed investment decisions.

Why It's Important

The Bloomberg Terminal is crucial for financial analysts because it provides real-time access to financial data, news, and analytics, enabling them to make informed investment decisions, analyze markets, and monitor portfolio performance efficiently.

How to Improve Bloomberg Terminal Skills

To improve your Bloomberg Terminal experience as a Financial Analyst, consider the following concise strategies:

  1. Customization: Tailor your Bloomberg Terminal interface to your specific needs. Focus on arranging your most-used functions and securities for quick access. Bloomberg provides guidance on workspace optimization.

  2. Keyboard Shortcuts: Master Bloomberg Terminal keyboard shortcuts to navigate and execute commands more efficiently. A comprehensive list is available on Bloomberg's Keyboard Shortcuts page.

  3. Bloomberg Excel Add-In: Leverage the Bloomberg Excel Add-In for advanced data analysis and modeling. This integrates seamlessly with your workflow. Detailed instructions can be found on the Bloomberg Excel Add-In page.

  4. Training and Certification: Enhance your skills by completing Bloomberg Market Concepts (BMC) and other training modules. Bloomberg offers resources and certification programs, accessible here.

  5. APIs for Automation: Utilize Bloomberg's APIs for automating data retrieval and analysis, streamlining your work processes. Explore the available APIs and documentation here.

  6. Stay Updated: Regularly check Bloomberg's updates and new features. They continuously enhance functionalities based on user feedback. Keep an eye on the Bloomberg Professional Services updates.

By implementing these strategies, you can significantly enhance your efficiency and analytical capabilities on the Bloomberg Terminal.

How to Display Bloomberg Terminal Skills on Your Resume

How to Display Bloomberg Terminal Skills on Your Resume

10. VBA

VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) is a programming language integrated into Microsoft Office applications, allowing financial analysts to automate repetitive tasks, perform complex calculations, and create custom functions and models to enhance data analysis and reporting efficiency.

Why It's Important

VBA (Visual Basic for Applications) is crucial for Financial Analysts as it enables the automation of repetitive tasks, facilitates complex calculations, and allows for the customization of financial models in Excel, significantly enhancing efficiency and accuracy in financial data analysis and reporting.

How to Improve VBA Skills

Improving your VBA skills can significantly enhance your efficiency and capabilities as a Financial Analyst. Here are concise steps with resources for improvement:

  1. Understand the Basics: Ensure you have a strong foundation in VBA basics. Excel Easy offers straightforward tutorials.

  2. Practice Regularly: Consistent practice is key. Solve real-world financial problems using VBA. Websites like Chandoo provide practical examples and challenges.

  3. Learn Error Handling: Minimize bugs in your scripts. Automate Excel offers a concise guide on implementing error handling.

  4. Use Advanced Functions and Techniques: Dive into more complex VBA functionalities relevant to financial analysis. The CPearson site covers advanced topics extensively.

  5. Optimize VBA Code: Learn to write efficient, faster-running code. Wise Owl Tutorials provide tips on optimization.

  6. Join Forums and Communities: Engage with other VBA users to exchange knowledge and solutions. The MrExcel Forum is a great community for questions and learning.

  7. Take Online Courses: Enroll in structured learning paths. Udemy and LinkedIn Learning offer courses tailored to various levels.

  8. Stay Updated: VBA is constantly evolving, so keep up with the latest features and best practices. The Excel Blog on Microsoft Tech Community shares updates and tips.

By following these steps and utilizing the linked resources, you can significantly improve your VBA skills tailored to financial analysis.

How to Display VBA Skills on Your Resume

How to Display VBA Skills on Your Resume


MATLAB is a high-level programming and numerical computing environment used for algorithm development, data analysis, visualization, and numerical computation, often utilized by financial analysts for quantitative financial analysis, modeling, and algorithmic trading strategies.

Why It's Important

MATLAB is important for Financial Analysts because it provides powerful tools for quantitative analysis, modeling, and visualization, enabling the efficient handling of large datasets and complex financial calculations to make data-driven investment decisions.

How to Improve MATLAB Skills

To improve MATLAB for a financial analyst, focus on mastering data analysis, financial modeling, and visualization tools. Enhance your MATLAB skills by:

  1. Learning key financial functions within MATLAB for risk analysis, asset allocation, and portfolio optimization. The Financial Toolbox is a good starting point.
  2. Familiarizing with MATLAB's Data Analysis capabilities to handle large datasets efficiently. The Data Analysis page offers insights.
  3. Improving visualization skills to create compelling financial reports and dashboards. Explore Graphics and Data Visualization for techniques and tools.
  4. Automating tasks by scripting to save time on repetitive analyses. MATLAB's documentation and scripting tutorials can be very helpful.
  5. Staying updated with the latest MATLAB features and financial industry trends. Join the MATLAB Finance Community for shared codes and discussions.

By focusing on these areas, you'll be able to leverage MATLAB more effectively in your financial analysis tasks.

How to Display MATLAB Skills on Your Resume

How to Display MATLAB Skills on Your Resume

12. Salesforce

Salesforce is a cloud-based customer relationship management (CRM) platform that offers a suite of tools for sales, customer service, marketing automation, analytics, and application development, helping businesses manage customer interactions and data throughout the customer lifecycle, aimed at improving customer satisfaction, sales, and efficiency. For a Financial Analyst, it provides valuable customer insights and data analytics for informed decision-making and forecasting.

Why It's Important

Salesforce is important for a Financial Analyst because it centralizes customer data, streamlines sales processes, and enhances forecasting accuracy, enabling more informed financial planning and decision-making.

How to Improve Salesforce Skills

To improve Salesforce for a Financial Analyst, consider the following concise steps:

  1. Customize Dashboards: Tailor Salesforce dashboards to display financial metrics and KPIs relevant to your analysis. Salesforce Dashboard Customization.

  2. Integrate Financial Tools: Connect Salesforce with financial software (e.g., QuickBooks, Xero) for streamlined data flow and analysis. Salesforce AppExchange - Financial Integration.

  3. Automate Reports: Utilize Salesforce's report scheduling feature to automate the delivery of financial reports. Automating Reports in Salesforce.

  4. Enhance Data Quality: Implement validation rules and approval processes to ensure the accuracy of financial data entered into Salesforce. Data Quality Management.

  5. Leverage Pardot for Client Engagement: Use Pardot for marketing automation to analyze and enhance client engagement and ROI. Salesforce Pardot.

  6. Educate Through Trailhead: Continuously improve your Salesforce skills and knowledge through Salesforce Trailhead modules tailored for financial analysis. Trailhead - Salesforce Learning.

Implementing these steps can significantly enhance Salesforce's utility for financial analysis, leading to more informed decision-making and improved financial performance.

How to Display Salesforce Skills on Your Resume

How to Display Salesforce Skills on Your Resume