Corporate Finance at a Fortune 50 to FLDP with experience?

TwoThrones's picture
Rank: King Kong | banana points 1,541

Hi monkeys,

First post, so I apologize in advance for any mistakes in this thread. I currently work at a top tech company (Fortune 20ish) in corporate finance. This isn't a FLDP or anything remotely prestigious. I have been working here for almost 2 years mainly in FP&A.

My question is, can you lateral from a corporate finance role into some sort of FLDP (maybe like a 2 year rotational program)? The company I'm at is one of the top companies (not as prestigious as a Google, Amazon, etc., think more HP or Intel) but the job frankly sucks. The pay is way under the average and the location is horrible also. Should I not waste my time looking for fldps and just try to network into a senior financial analyst position? Thanks for all the replies.

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Comments (14)

May 7, 2013

FLDPs are generally geared toward new college graduates. Seeing as you have 2+ years of experience already, I would shoot for networking for a senior analyst position. Leadership program's compensation structure are generally rigid, although you may be receiving a slight bump from your current salary, I would believe additional responsibility would be more beneficial than a slight bump and shallow experience in 3 other functions.

However, if you really are interested in a rotational program in corporate finance, I would shoot for an MBA and getting in an executive level rotational program.

Background: currently in an FLDP.

Feel free to PM if you have any other questions!

    • 1
May 7, 2013
MrReagan8:

FLDPs are generally geared toward new college graduates. Seeing as you have 2+ years of experience already, I would shoot for networking for a senior analyst position. Leadership program's compensation structure are generally rigid, although you may be receiving a slight bump from your current salary, I would believe additional responsibility would be more beneficial than a slight bump and shallow experience in 3 other functions.

However, if you really are interested in a rotational program in corporate finance, I would shoot for an MBA and getting in an executive level rotational program.

Background: currently in an FLDP.

Feel free to PM if you have any other questions!

THis

May 7, 2013

Ya, i've seen Financial Analysts go into our FLDP after one year of experience, but never more than that. Your best bet is to try and network into an SFA role or switch companies. There is no reason to do the FLDP anyways as it's 2-3 years then SFA when you already have 2 years. I know some of the lesser known tech companies out there pay kind of crappy relative to the COL (I have a buddy making ~48k at Oracle). I think you are really going to need to look to jump into an SFA role where you are at or somewhere else. A lot of those require 3 years of experience, not two, so you may need to tough it out a little longer. But no reason not to start looking now and make sure you get your resume right.

May 7, 2013

hey man, i've been doing FP&A for about 3 years now, non-FDLP at a Fortune 1000 Software company that is pretty well-know (think Symantec, Adobe, Intuit, etc...). i know what you mean when you say "the job sucks".

i think that an FDLP program even now would be a great move for your career, though it's kind of a long-shot for you to get in considering your experience. what are your goals for the near future? do you plan on going the top MBA route? if not, then "losing" a few years of career progression by lateraling into an FDLP role rather than being promoted in your current role may be worth it. from my experience, the career trajectory of an FDLP analyst is far better than your run-of-the-mill FP&A guy. if your immediate goal is b-school, however, then this may make the jump less than ideal and you should opt for a promotion to SFA instead.

anyways, the big "if" here is whether you can actually get into a role like this. it's unlikely, but network your ass off and see what happens. best of luck.

Money Never Sleeps? More like Money Never SUCKS amirite?!?!?!?

May 7, 2013

Can you elaborate on why the job frankly sucks? Is it because of the low pay and bad location, or do you dislike what you are functionally doing as well?

If you are happy with FP&A, then I agree with the advice given regarding shooting for an SFA job soon and moving to another location.

It sounds like you don't really like your job though. If you dislike FP&A and want to move into a significantly different functional area of the business, you may have to choose a different vertical route - either through a internal or external rotational program, mba, etc. Various companies have rotational programs for recent undergrads, mbas, inbetween undergrad and mba but some experience, mba + a few years after ("mid level"), international travel vs no travel, etc.

If you have good reviews, you can also look into various internal programs your company has - internal consulting comes to mind

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May 7, 2013

Hi everyone,

Thanks so much for all the replies.

Aspirant21, as for why the job sucks, it is a little mind numbing at times. Honestly, my job is so easy I average working 25-30 hours a week. Its hilarious that my boss thinks that I'm one of the best workers but I come in to work around 9:30am average. FP&A itself is okay work, but this company definitely has a problem balancing workloads. Add the terrible pay and horrible location (it just snowed 15 inches here last week!) and you have a job that sucks.

This company also created "financial hubs" where they want to keep all the Financial Analysts together. This works well on paper, but this means we cannot move around internally (someone got an offer to move to corporate in a much better position but his manager rejected it). There also is no Senior FA position. Ours is FA -> Team Lead -> Finance Manager. Team lead takes about 4-5 years, and I don't think I have it in me to stay that long only to make less than an FA at another company.

Sayandarula, thanks for the encouragement. I prefer to go to a top MBA program in a few years. I networked to get an interview at a boutique consulting firm but didn't get the job. All the SFA positions I've seen online require about 5 years experience. It looks like the FLDP is out of the question then (I graduated Dec. 2009 so I'm far removed as it is).

Do B-schools really look MUCH less favorably at a standard FP&A versus FLDP? My company doesn't have an FLDP program, but I think the brand name generally impresses.

AllDay_028, thanks for the response as well. What are the key factors they look for in a SFA resume? My resume right now is tailored to management consulting (quantified results, leadership, brand names), what else could make it look good?

May 7, 2013
TwoThrones:

This company also created "financial hubs" where they want to keep all the Financial Analysts together. This works well on paper, but this means we cannot move around internally (someone got an offer to move to corporate in a much better position but his manager rejected it).

What? That is straight retarded, if that's the whole story.

It sounds like a very reasonable route would be to go just go to a different company at a similar level to where you are now - it sounds like you would get a pay bump in the process and could move to a different location. Since your company's brand name impresses, can you lateral to an equally impressive competitor or similar company?

Being under-utilized/bored at works sucks for sure

May 7, 2013
TwoThrones:

Hi everyone,

Thanks so much for all the replies.

Aspirant21, as for why the job sucks, it is a little mind numbing at times. Honestly, my job is so easy I average working 25-30 hours a week. Its hilarious that my boss thinks that I'm one of the best workers but I come in to work around 9:30am average. FP&A itself is okay work, but this company definitely has a problem balancing workloads. Add the terrible pay and horrible location (it just snowed 15 inches here last week!) and you have a job that sucks.

This company also created "financial hubs" where they want to keep all the Financial Analysts together. This works well on paper, but this means we cannot move around internally (someone got an offer to move to corporate in a much better position but his manager rejected it). There also is no Senior FA position. Ours is FA -> Team Lead -> Finance Manager. Team lead takes about 4-5 years, and I don't think I have it in me to stay that long only to make less than an FA at another company.

Sayandarula, thanks for the encouragement. I prefer to go to a top MBA program in a few years. I networked to get an interview at a boutique consulting firm but didn't get the job. All the SFA positions I've seen online require about 5 years experience. It looks like the FLDP is out of the question then (I graduated Dec. 2009 so I'm far removed as it is).

Do B-schools really look MUCH less favorably at a standard FP&A versus FLDP? My company doesn't have an FLDP program, but I think the brand name generally impresses.

AllDay_028, thanks for the response as well. What are the key factors they look for in a SFA resume? My resume right now is tailored to management consulting (quantified results, leadership, brand names), what else could make it look good?

Oh god I'm going to be working with you starting next month. Well not necessarily with you but we'll be in the same building...

May 7, 2013
TwoThrones:

Do B-schools really look MUCH less favorably at a standard FP&A versus FLDP? My company doesn't have an FLDP program, but I think the brand name generally impresses.

People too often forget that FLDP is just a name.
Anyone can call their program a FLDP. There's not necessarily a formal definition and just because it's called a leadership development program does not mean your experience will be any better.

May 7, 2013

Partially b/c FLDPs offer exposure to a wide array of responsibilities, tasks and financial situations. Basically, the FLDP is a great tool to start for future CFOs. Many F500 companies tend to continue to allow rotations and lateral movement between departments to improve the quality of its financial team.

For instance, General Mills forces its employees to move to a different team/group every 2 years (i.e. FP&A to Corp Dev to Financial Ops, etc.). I know some of the biotech and healthcare groups (Baxter, Abbott Labs) do the same.

Note, by forced I mean suggested. It's generally not an actual requirement.

I think you should try and lateral to another group internally or look for another F500 employer to lateral to. Lots of senior analyst positions out there (you are probably eligible for those after 3-4 years of work experience).

May 7, 2013

I don't want to highjack the OP's thread, but can someone enlighten me as to why FP&A is so bad? I thought that out of a lot of corporate finance jobs, FP&A can include the more interesting finance functions like capital budgeting, forecasting, financial modeling, project finance, etc. This is why I was attracted to this function in the first place. Am I completely off as to what the job actually entails? I know there is a fair amount of accounting, but I thought you still got exposure to the aspects I mentioned (hence why it's FP&A and not just FP).

Again, sorry to highjack OP, but I was just curious.since everyone unanimously seems to hate FP&A in here. I know it's not corp dev, but my impression was that it's the next best thing and that it's not impossible to move into Corp Dev later on from FP&A if you do well there (harder than going from IB/MBB to Corp Dev obviously though)..

May 7, 2013
Accrual Dictator:

I thought that out of a lot of corporate finance jobs, FP&A can include the more interesting finance functions like capital budgeting, forecasting, financial modeling, project finance, etc. T

Do you have any idea what these terms your throwing out actually mean?
As in, what the day to day is actually like doing forecasting or capital budgeting, particularly if you sit at the corporate level?

90% of your day is spent putting other people's work together, checking other people's work, reconciling and trying to figure out why there is a minor discrepancy somewhere.

May 7, 2013

Yes, I am aware of what those terms mean in theory. Whether or not it actually ends up being the same in practice is a different matter and something I am ignorant of (hence why I'm asking).

May 8, 2013
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