Lateraling as a SA to a different bank for FT

So I'm starting a SA at a MM/balance sheet bank this summer and am trying to figure out if there's a point in networking into a BB full time for S&T. I know that S&T return offer rates are already low and COVID doesn't help the FT situation so is there even a point in trying? If so what would be the best way and time-frame to go about it? Any comments appreciated.

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Comments (7)

Jun 7, 2020 - 2:15pm

I would network as hard as possible throughout the summer but don't lose sight of your #1 focus of getting a return offer. FT, in general, will be harder across the board given the lack of in-person interviews and banks wanting to cut costs. A return offer brings decent leverage to the table but only if you pair that up with networking. I definitely wouldn't want to be in a position without a return offer heading into the fall given the current state of the economy. However, start networking ASAP and get a feel for what banks might be doing regarding FT. If they have some spots open, make sure your name is on their shortlist of candidates they may want to interview.

  • Summer Associate in IB - Cov
Jun 7, 2020 - 4:56pm

How would you go about networking at banks that you have no alumni at? Also, how do you approach this without it getting back to the bank you're interning at?

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  • Analyst 1 in IB-M&A
Jun 8, 2020 - 3:07am

Some advice from someone who did this:

1) the absolute most important thing is to convert your internship into a full-time offer. This is close to a kill shot for your chances if you don't earn the FT offer. (obviously if you get a FT lateral offer before your summer is up this doesn't matter as much, if at all).

2) Be careful not to network too wide early in the summer. If you're 2 weeks in and are already telling another bank you're not interested in accepting a FT offer where you currently are, often big red flags go up about why you accepted your internship in the first place, your integrity, and questions about your performance during the internship.

When I reached out to people I didn't know very well I would position the conversation as "advice for an intern and insight on the industry" vs. "I'm trying to lateral and hope to leverage our relationship in 7-8 weeks". Make no mistake, people are not dumb and likely suspect you to be laying the groundwork to lateral, but my mentors told me it's not a good look to be open about it that early on.

3) As you network over the summer, try to find out when your target firm will be extending their FT offers and when their deadline ends for accepting the offers they gave out. Understanding the timing differences between your offer and theirs is key. if they give offers before your firm, you'll have a better idea of how many seats they are looking to fill. If you get your offer before they extend theirs, it's a bit tricky to leverage it as effectively given they generally prioritize their interns accepting their FT offer over a lateral hire.

4) Once you earn your FT offer and you've decided you want to lateral, call on your closest contacts and let them know A) you got your full time offer, B) you really enjoyed your conversations with them and C) you are interested to interview with them for a FT position before your offer expires. Don't be arrogant, they don't owe you anything. DO show your passion and desire to work for their firm.

5) Expect to be pushed in your interviews. Hiring a new FT without having seen them "prove themselves" to some point during their internship is a risk for the firm. You also need to have logical and defensible reasons why you don't want to go back FT where you interned and why you know the lateral position/bank is better for you. Speaking to the reputation of the target firm is almost always something they like to hear.

This is my experience moving to an EB from mid-tier BB in SF. Others may disagree or have a different experience.

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Jun 8, 2020 - 4:47pm

This is really insightful, thank you. Since multiple banks (mine included) begin their internship on July 6th this summer because of COVID, would you recommend starting to reach out late June or actually wait until August for calls? (Since 2 weeks into the internship will already be mid-July)

Jun 8, 2020 - 7:43pm

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