Career in Treasury for CAs: Why without a passion for markets and interpersonal skills you can't grow in Treasury.

How to start a Career in treasury for CA interpersonal skills is key

  • Hi, I am Vinit Vanjara, a Chartered Accountant (CA), and Treasury FX (Forex) Sales Professional.
  • A passion for tracking global markets helped me land my dream job as a Treasury Sales Dealer at HDFC Bank. 
  • This challenging yet dynamic role requires crisp communication skills, quick decision making and a very sharp approach. 
  • Considering working in Treasury? In this article, I will share what my key responsibilities are. 

From Credit to Treasury: What is working in Treasury?

I was clear about starting my career in the banking industry. However, the big question was – what profile would best suit me in the banking space?

As a CA Fresher, I got an opportunity to join Citi Bank as a Credit Analyst, where I covered North American Insurance companies. It looked good and I took it up. 

Here I developed the skill sets to analyze companies & data, understand clients’ businesses in depth, risk identification & mitigation and most importantly credit negotiations. 

I was also very passionate about tracking global markets, and news flows. My understanding of macroeconomics, business sense, and willingness to achieve something different
helped me to join HDFC Bank as a Treasury Sales Dealer. 

My role involves catering to FX and derivative requirements for various corporates. I support them with mitigating FX & interest rate risk and suggest arbitrage opportunities and cost-saving strategies.

In addition to the above-mentioned responsibilities my role also includes the following:

  • Daily interactions with CEOs/CFOs/Finance Heads of various corporate companies. 
  • Execute various FX deals on behalf of the clients. These products could range from plain vanilla to complex derivative solutions. 
  • In-depth understanding of products and their pricing mechanism. 
  • Track the movements of different currencies in the market.
  • Various document negotiations, acquiring new clients and bringing additional revenue. 

It seemed like a dream job for me. 

As part of Sales, I am responsible for tracking various corporates for their FX flows and increasing their engagement. 

Time went on and in  2022 I became the Assistant Vice President for Treasury FX And Derivative Sales at DBS Bank. DBS Bank is a Singaporean Multinational Banking and Financial Services Corporation. 

Skills acquired from my previous Credit roles, such as an eye for detail, credit negotiations, risk identification and mitigation has helped me a lot in my journey to date.

Intricacies of Treasury Sales role

Treasury is one of the most important departments in an organization.

It is divided into various segments;

1) Proprietary Trading & Interbank 

2) Treasury FX & Derivatives Sales 

3) Asset And Liability Management (ALM)

4) G-Sec & corporate bonds 

5) Debt origination & structuring.

When one says Treasury Sales, people think about markets, number crunching, complex charts, buying & selling products etc. While it is partly true, the role is much more dynamic and challenging.

It requires crisp communication skills, quick decision making and at the same time a very sharp approach. A small mistake could cost the company a few million dollars.

What makes Treasury Sales different from other front-end roles, is that it requires specialized skill sets for the financial markets, understanding products in depth, and pricing skills to name a few. 

Understanding the client’s business is also required. You have to ensure that the solutions offered by you, with respect to FX or derivatives are suitable for the client, and address risk mitigation.

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CAs fit for treasury roles? 

CAs can play a significant role in treasury due to their deeper understanding of various business aspects such as finance, taxation, markets, etc. 

They can help the clients & organization in running the business efficiently and making them aware of the new business opportunities & risks involved. They can use their auditing skills to safeguard their client and organization's interest. 

CAs can explore a range of roles from ALM management, Interbank trading, and debt markets to FX/Derivative/G-sec Sales. Pursuing a specific role depends on an individual’s interests & abilities.  

What skills are needed in Treasury

Treasury overall is a customer-centric role and is focused on making a client’s journey smoother.

There is no golden rule to get a job in Treasury. But to be a part of the Treasury department, being a CA, CFA or MBA from a top-tier institution is required.

Apart from the educational qualification, the most important skills required are, 

  • Strong Ethics & Honesty
  • Discipline
  • Good interpersonal skills
  • Dynamic personality
  • Passion for markets
  • Understanding variables, correlating them and deriving informed decisions & solutions.
  • Strong conceptual understanding
  • Keen observer, and a very good listener & learner. 

I would recommend you start actively networking with Treasury Professionals across organizations and engage in various market forums. 

There are various courses available to learn about markets, one can actively pursue them.

Try to get an entry-level role in treasury or an associated function rather than targeting a specific role.

People typically enter a treasury career path by moving up internally from an accounting position on the corporate side or moving over from accounting or banking. Entry-level positions are analysts. They can move up to being managers, directors, and ultimately treasurers. It can take anywhere from two to five years to move up through the positions. Treasury is one of the high-paying jobs in the banking industry. A fresher can earn almost 20% more as compared to other banking jobs.


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