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Jobs in finance: what does an asset finance specialist do?

08 February, 2021Juno Baker

If you’re a people person with good analytical skills and an interest in banking, finance and relationship management – a career in asset finance offers job satisfaction and opportunity. And if you’re already a professional in the leasing industry, a recognised qualification will help you advance your career.

This page covers all you need to know about working and progressing in asset finance, including skills and qualifications, and opportunities to progress.

What is asset finance?

crane and construction siteBusinesses and start-ups use asset finance to buy the equipment they need, particularly when undertaking a major new project – anything from office furniture to manufacturing plants, vehicles and construction equipment.

Covid-19 and the lockdown have hit industry hard, but when the economy bounces back, businesses will need asset finance to help them grow. And they’ll need talented, competent professionals to manage their asset finance.

Where does an asset finance professional work?

Asset finance roles are customer facing and about managing relationships. If you choose a career in asset finance, you might work in a:

  • bank
  • the finance arm of a leading retailer or a manufacturing company, or
  • a specialist asset finance broker.

Why does asset finance matter?

After bank overdrafts and loans, asset finance is the third most common source of finance for businesses. It enables entrepreneurs to create start-ups and established companies to carry out big projects, particularly in construction and infrastructure.

Stephen Sklaroff, Former Director General of the Finance Leasing Association (FLA), describes it as playing a “vital role in the UK’s business funding landscape”.

How to begin a career in asset finance

You’ll need good communication and negotiation skills, be able to build relationships and prioritise tasks, and demonstrate that you’re determined and analytical.

You should be confident talking to customers, so if you’ve had customer-facing experience before that’s an advantage.

Do I need a qualification to work in asset finance?

You don't need a specific qualification to work in asset finance, but if you want to give yourself the edge, you should consider the Diploma in Asset Finance (DipAF).

We developed DipAF in partnership with the Finance & Leasing Association and in consultation with the wider industry. So it covers all the fundamentals and offers a good grounding on the broader financial industry.

Online study texts are included in your fee and you’ll have access to online tutor support throughout the course. There’s also a discussion forum where you can post questions for tutors and chat about the topics with other students. Practice questions at the end of each topic will help you review your learning and there’s a workshop to help you prepare for the final exam.

When you’ve successfully completed the course, you’ll be able to use the 'DipAF' designation after your name – adding to your professional credibility and setting you apart from your peers.

How long does DipAF take to complete?

The course takes about 18 months to complete but the course tutors will work with you to create study planners and keep you on track throughout. If you have some asset finance experience already you should aim for about four hours a week of study, and if you’re new to asset finance, about six.

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Find out more about the Diploma in Asset Finance