Three Citi employees spoke to us about the Citi Salutes Graduate Programme, and how you can prepare for a successful transition into financial services.
Jack Pile, a former Army officer, is currently on the programme, while Lucy Griffiths and Jessica Plant are from Citi’s HR Team, and are responsible for recruiting veterans to the programme. They participated in a webinar about the programme, so read below for their key insights.
About the Citi Salutes Graduate Programme
Although not an exclusively military programme, Citi is keen for veterans to apply. The investment bank actively supports veterans and understands their business value. The environment is fast paced and dynamic, and involves a steep learning process for participants. There is a wide variety of roles available across the business on rotation, giving you the opportunity to experience different jobs.
Most people on the course are graduates, so you are likely to be older than most of the recruits, but this can work to your advantage. Staff may be more willing to take you to see clients due to your maturity, and existing skills.
Citi provides a high-level of support to participants, such as providing mentors. There is also military network, comprised of employees who have served in the Armed Forces. It runs social events, and gives you immediate contact with people who have been on a similar journey.
Once you have decided to leave the Armed Forces, you need to start taking steps towards your post-military career.
- Use your time wisely and understand the fundamentals of finance.
- You could gain a relevant qualification, such as the Investment Management Certificate (IMC) with the CFA Institute.
- There are good books to read, including ‘Open Yale: Financial Markets’ by Professor Robert J. Shiller; ‘The Money Machine: How the City Works’ by Philip Cogg and ‘A Financial Bestiary’ by Ramin Charles Nakisa.
- Follow the financial news by listening to BBC Radio 5 Live: Wake Up to Money, which is also available as a podcast so you can listen at your own convenience. You should read the Economist and Financial Times, but you do not need to buy the latter every day. Investopedia is a great online resource to check anything you do not understand.
The importance of networking cannot be overstated, and there is an extensive ex-military network you can use.
- The key to successfully networking is to have a clear aim: what do you want to achieve via your contacts?
- When you meet people take notes of important information they share, and remember to keep in touch.
- If there is someone you would like to meet, ask a mutual contact to make an introduction.
How to apply
Citi accepts applications from the beginning and reviews them on a rolling basis, so apply as early as possible. Here is the process:
- Submit CV with your cover letter online
- Online test in numerical or logical analysis
- Interviews by telephone or in person
- Assessment face-to-face at our centre
- Receive an offer
What makes a good application? How to write an excellent CV and covering letter:
- A clear and ordered structure
- Include your main achievements and skills
- Maximum of two pages
- Avoid military jargon
- Spell check
- Write as a formal letter
- No more than one page
- Three paragraphs – Why Citi? Why that business area? Why you?
- Make it personal and make it specific
Watch the webinar: