2021 Fintech Bootcamp Guide

You’ve probably heard about coding bootcamps, you may have heard of data science bootcamps, but have you heard about … fintech bootcamps? Or, more broadly, have you heard of fintech? 

Fintech is a booming new field at the intersection of tech and finance. In this guide we’ll cover everything you need to know about fintech bootcamps – from how fintech skills can help your career, to different bootcamp formats, to what “fintech” even means. Read on to learn more!

 

What is Fintech?

Fintech, or financial technology, includes any technology that is used in finance and related fields. Innovative tech has been permeating virtually every industry and finance professionals have been especially welcoming to it. In finance – where every dollar and every second counts – technologies like automation, digitization, and mobile applications can make a great positive impact on efficiency. Finance professionals can also use fintech skills to develop predictive algorithms about markets, automate elements of internal workflows, and analyze data. In all of these fields, technology can help firms achieve a significant competitive advantage in markets.

Fintech applications are not limited to internal functions. Some applications of fintech are designed for use directly by the consumer. You may have used fintech yourself, to deposit a check with your mobile phone or to trade stocks on an app like Robinhood. 

According to a study by Morning Consult, fintech has been particularly boosted during the Covid-19 pandemic – particularly among young people, urban dwellers, and high-earners. For people quarantining at home, mobile banking and ecommerce were a huge help. Communities leveraged crowdfunding platforms to help families in need due to pandemic-related job losses. Even without the effects of a pandemic, fintech products increase convenience and modernity in daily life.

Fintech is basically one specific application of all technologies – from coding to cybersecurity to UX design. For example, a fintech professional might use their coding skills to build an app that allows users to apply for loans. They could also leverage UX design skills to make the app user friendly. Other fintech pros might use data science skills to pinpoint unusual transactions on a credit card statement. 

Applications of fintech include:

  • Mobile banking
  • Crowdfunding platforms
  • Cryptocurrency & blockchain
  • Stock-trading apps
  • Personal finance apps
  • Mobile payment apps
  • Fraud detection
  • CRM software
  • Credit score calculators
  • Online marketplace comparisons 

 

What is a Fintech Bootcamp?

A fintech bootcamp, is an intensive educational program that prepares students for a career in fintech.  These bootcamps are offered by a variety of different companies and the number of options for students to choose from has expanded over the last few years as the demand for workers with strong fintech skills has increased.

Not all fintech bootcamps are the same so you’ll want to compare a number of factors before choosing one to enroll in. 

First of all, bootcamps may be offered online or in-person at a bootcamp campus. Online programs are the more numerous option but if you’re a classroom learner or a social butterfly, you can find bootcamps that meet for in person lessons.

Fintech bootcamps can follow part-time or full-time schedules. A full-time bootcamp is great for someone who is in a hurry to dive into the workforce, while a part-time option is more accessible for those who work or have family responsibilities. 

Additionally, fintech bootcamps have varied curricula. Some skills may be more thoroughly emphasized by some programs than others. When browsing bootcamps, it’s a good idea to review the skills each bootcamp covers. 

 

What Will You Learn at a Fintech Bootcamp?

While bootcamps vary in their exact curriculum design, there are some overall subjects that nearly all fintech bootcamp will cover. These programs teach students a variety of technologies like coding, analytics, and software development but these subjects will be taught within the framing of finance. For example, when learning about UI design, students may work on developing a sample UI for a payment app and when using algorithms to analyze data, they’ll use datasets relating to finance.

Four areas commonly included in fintech bootcamp curricula include blockchain and cryptocurrency, programming and related financial libraries, machine learning, and fundamentals of finance. With proficiency in these four areas, students will be ready to enter the fintech field with a sturdy knowledge base.

1. Blockchain and cryptocurrency

Cryptocurrency is a new kind of currency – a futuristic version of dollars, euros, yen, etc. However, instead of being issued by a country’s bank like national currencies are, crypto coins are generated by software and code. The specifications of the code vary between different kinds of cryptocurrencies. Popular cryptocurrencies are Bitcoin, Ethereum, and Tether. 

Blockchain is the technology that makes cryptocurrency transactions possible. Blockchain is, intuitively, a chain of blocks. Each block contains code that details information about cryptocurrency transactions. The blocks are ‘chained’ together in a way that makes them highly secure. These blocks of code are compartmentalized but also connected. If an attacker accesses one block, the rest of the blockchain remains secure. Furthermore, since other blocks in the chain contain information about the blocks that are chained to them, any tampering with a block is easy to identify.

Blockchain and cryptocurrency can seem extremely abstract and difficult to wrap your head around. This is where instructor-led bootcamps can be more helpful than written explanations.

2. Programming and Financial Libraries

Many kinds of fintech use programming – programming financial software, programming an algorithm to use with financial data, or programming AI to accomplish finance-related tasks. 

Libraries are packages that contain useful code that many people may want to use. They make coders’ work easier because, instead of coding every program 100% from scratch, they can use pre-written code from libraries to accomplish common actions. Many programming languages have financial libraries that contain pre-written code for accomplishing all kinds of common tasks related to finance. Fintech bootcamps will teach you how to use these to streamline your programming. 

3. Machine Learning

Machine learning is a form of automation in which algorithms can take in data and accomplish tasks based on the data without being programmed with specific instructions. Finance institutions use massive amounts of data to make decisions about loans, investments, and business decisions. Machine learning algorithms can be used to analyze this data and provide suggestions or implement actions on their own. Bootcamp programs will cover more specific use-cases for this technology. 

4. Finance Fundamentals

In order to be involved in financial technology, fintech bootcamp students must have adequate understanding of how finance and banking work. This includes skills in financial analysis, financial modeling, time-series analysis, and working with advanced spreadsheets, as well as general understanding about the industry and its major players. As opposed to general coding or data science bootcamps, fintech bootcamps will provide students with the opportunity to work with finance-specific data sets. This way they can build up a more relevant portfolio of projects and get experience that may be relevant later in their careers. 

 

Benefits of a Fintech Bootcamp

The advantages of taking a fintech bootcamp are multifold. Let’s go through each of them one by one.

 

1. New Skills

The number one benefit you’ll gain from a fintech bootcamp is the new set of technical skills you’ll develop. You’ll learn about many of the subjects we discussed above and potentially even more fintech uses and even cutting edge new developments in the field. Your new skills will help you market yourself to employers and will help you excel in your ultimate career.

 

2. Expert Guidance

A major benefit of enrolling in an instructor-led bootcamp is that you will have fintech professionals to answer your questions, help you with your weak spots and consult on your projects. While you can learn some skills independently, expert instructors can help make sure you lean the most in-demand skills and understand the industry on a deeper level.

 

3. Peer Collaboration

Many bootcamps include partner and group projects in their curriculum. Even 100% online programs will set up opportunities for discussion and collaboration among students. These opportunities can help you gain insights from other students’ perspectives and even foster friendships!

 

4. Develop a Portfolio

Most bootcamps follow a project-based curriculum in which you’ll learn new skills and then apply them to a project at the end of each unit. By the end of the program you’ll have completed a handful of polished projects to be proud of! You can demonstrate your projects for potential employers or discuss them in interviews as evidence of your technical experience.

 

5. Professional Connections

Some bootcamps offer networking opportunities in which you can meet with potential employers. Even for those that don’t explicitly include this, you’ll still get to be part of a community of students, instructors, and alumni. These connections can be helpful when you’re looking for job opportunities.

 

6. Career Support

Ultimately, the goal of a fintech bootcamp is to help you land a job in fintech. Recognizing this, many bootcamp providers offer career services to help their students find a post-bootcamp job. These vary from bootcamp to bootcamp but when will help with interview preparation, communication skills, and resume editing.

 

Careers in Fintech

Wondering what kind of job you might work towards after completing a fintech bootcamp? Check out the list below for inspiration! 

Blockchain Developer

With new fintech skills, you’ll be well-prepared for a career focused on blockchain. With the rise of cryptocurrency and increasing demand for encryption services, blockchain developers will find many opportunities in the tech industry.

Financial Analyst

Financial analysts don’t always need a fintech background but fintech skills will put you on the cutting edge of the industry and give you a competitive advantage over other job applicants. You’ll also be able to accomplish more complex analysis more quickly.

Product Manager

Product managers need to have a good understanding of customer needs as well as the technical capabilities and processes of their digital products. With strong fintech skills you would be well-placed to be a product manager for a finance-related app or service.

App Developer

In contrast to a product manager, developers are more in the weeds, implementing changes and updates in apps. If, after you finish a fintech bootcamp, you find that your favorite part was coding and wielding your technical toolkit, you might like working as a developer for a digital finance product or app.

Artificial Intelligence Specialist

Many of the fintech skills you’ll learn in a bootcamp will involve AI and automation. With a strong background in this area you can go on to develop even more applications for artificial intelligence, in finance or other areas.

Data Scientist

Data scientists play an important role in most financial organizations, since finance involves huge amounts of data on transactions, customers, prices, business performance, economic indicators, and more!  A data scientist with fintech skills would be well-placed to work in a bank, credit card company, investment firm, lending institution, or government agency.

Salaries for Fintech Professionals

PositionAverage Salary (August 2021)
Blockchain Developer$110,285
Financial Analyst$72,560
Product Manager$111,723
App Developer$89,088
Artificial Intelligence Specialist$122,607
Data Scientist$115,513

 

How Much Does a Fintech Bootcamp Cost?

Fintech bootcamps generally cost in the range of $8,000 to $30,000. Full-time, instructor-led programs are often the most expensive options while flexible bootcamps that put more responsibility on students might be a bit less pricey. Neither of these options is inherently a better or worse investment – it all depends what kind of learning works best for you. If you like a bit of extra support, it’s probably worth investing a little extra. All things considered, it’s important to review and compare different features and perks of bootcamps before choosing one to enroll in. 

While bootcamps can be pricey, there are a number of scholarships and loans that can help students out. In our listings below we’ve noted programs that offer these or other flexible payment options. You can also check out our comprehensive guide to bootcamp scholarships on our resource page.

 

How Much Time Does a Fintech Bootcamp Take to Complete?

The bootcamps in our comprehensive list take between 12 and 24 weeks to complete. The shorter programs tend to be full-time immersives, while the longer ones may be part-time or run on flexible schedules that allow students to complete work around their other responsibilities.

 

Fintech Bootcamp Requirements 

While most fintech bootcamps do not have prerequisites, it is useful for applicants to have some background knowledge in coding, finance, or a little of both. Prior education in fields such as finance, statistics, business, management, or computer programming is certainly helpful too. 

Additionally, most fintech bootcamps require students to be 18 years or older. There may be further requirements for financial aid receipt. In some cases, aid is limited to U.S. citizens and DACA recipients. 

 

Finding the Right Fintech Bootcamp for You

Now that you have an idea of what fintech bootcamps have to offer, you can browse our list of different bootcamps below. We’ve included details about subjects covered, career support, and extra perks. Get ready to launch your fintech career!