What it does: COL Financial Group engages in the online brokerage of securities, stocks, and mutual funds in the Philippines.
Best known for: COL Financial Group claims to be the ‘#1 Online Stockbroker’ in the country.
Staff stats: more than 200 employees
Financials: Php512.6 million in net income for 2018
The good bits: COL offers competitive entry-level salaries. For example, an equity research analyst may earn Php31,000 per month.
The not-so-good bits: While there are plenty of roles for fresh grads, insiders said that there are only a few options for career growth.
COL used to be known as CitisecOnline when it started in 1999. The company subsequently changed its name in 2012, following approval from the Securities and Exchange Commission in the Philippines.
As the leading online stockbroker in the country, COL caters to more than 200,000 customers through several products and services:
The company has its headquarters in Pasig City and four investor centers in Cebu, Davao, Ilocos, and Makati City.
Most employees agree that COL employs approachable bosses, friendly colleagues, and empowers everyone with financial literacy.
Fresh grads should expect to do multiple tasks if they are assigned to a small team. Some insiders at the Makati investor center said that the workload can be hectic for this reason. It can be a good thing for someone who wants to accomplish a lot in their career right away.
Employees who used to be fresh grads also felt valued when COL entrusted different responsibilities to them, despite lacking experience.
The biggest challenge for fresh grads, though, is likely being unable to achieve career growth depending on the role. Even so, COL takes care of its high-performing employees by rewarding them with bonuses.
In terms of work-life balance, most people work during regular hours from Monday to Friday.
COL competes with BDO Securities, BPI Trade, First Metro Securities, iTRADE by DA Market Securities, and Philstocks Financial.
In 2020, COL allegedly failed to gain approval for trading in real estate investment trust (REIT) securities. This led to several complaints from investors who urged the Securities and Exchange Commission to investigate the matter.
COL completed a tree-planting activity in 2012 at the Old Sanitary Landfill in Antipolo City. It also participated in the Protect-a-Hectare program of the La Mesa Watershed in 2013 and 2014. The company continues to host investor education initiatives for the benefit of Filipinos.
COL prefers to hire experienced professionals, so fresh grads should use their skills to catch the company’s attention. Candidates can also stand out if they possess extensive knowledge about the stock market.
Fresh grads can expect a fast recruitment process at COL. The company takes four days on average to recruit qualified candidates. In general, the recruitment stages may involve up to four steps:
Common interview questions:
While previous applicants experienced an easy interview process, they struggled with the technical exam. Fresh grads should then brush up on fundamental skills related to their degrees (eg accounting, economics).
COL may inform candidates whether or not they are shortlisted for the role.
Entry-level salaries at COL may range from Php24,000 to Php26,000 per month. The actual salary of fresh grads will depend on their roles.
Equity research analysts, for instance, may earn Php31,000 as their average monthly base pay. They might also earn Php20,000 per month as additional pay.
COL provides dental and medical coverage, insurance, loans, miscellaneous allowance, and retirement benefits.
There are plenty of entry-level roles at COL. Fresh grads can explore a career path in seven positions.
Individuals who finished a Bachelor's Degree in Accountancy, Finance, or Mathematics can join the company’s accounting staff. They usually work on-site in Ortigas, Pasig City.
COL’s compliance staff assistants completed a bachelor’s degree in any course. Those with a pre-law major have the advantage over their peers.
Computer science, IT, and software engineering graduates may join COL as developers if they can demonstrate experience with programming.
The company accepts fresh grads if they finished a Bachelor’s Degree in Applied Mathematics, Business Management, Commerce, or Management Engineering.
Graphic designers at COL completed a Bachelors’ Degree in Advertising, Marketing, or Multimedia Arts. Fresh grads will have a better chance of landing the role if they are familiar with video production.
Legal and compliance officers at COL finished a Bachelors of Law or Juris Doctor degree and passed the bar exam. While the company welcomes fresh grads for the role, it prefers someone with at least one year of work experience.
Fresh grads with a Bachelor's Degree in Marketing or Communications can become New Accounts Associates. They have a higher chance of joining COL if they know a lot about the capital markets industry.