Skip to main content
A-Z IndexCalendarsDirectoryMaps

Background Image for Header:

Home / Academics / Careers / Personal Financial Advisors Career

Personal Financial Advisors Career

Career Description

Advise clients on financial plans using knowledge of tax and investment strategies, securities, insurance, pension plans, and real estate. Duties include assessing clients' assets, liabilities, cash flow, insurance coverage, tax status, and financial objectives.

What Job Titles Personal Financial Advisors Might Have

  • Certified Financial Planner (CFP)
  • Financial Advisor
  • Financial Planner
  • Portfolio Manager

What Personal Financial Advisors Do

  • Interview clients to determine their current income, expenses, insurance coverage, tax status, financial objectives, risk tolerance, or other information needed to develop a financial plan.
  • Answer clients' questions about the purposes and details of financial plans and strategies.
  • Recommend to clients strategies in cash management, insurance coverage, investment planning, or other areas to help them achieve their financial goals.
  • Analyze financial information obtained from clients to determine strategies for meeting clients' financial objectives.
  • Implement financial planning recommendations or refer clients to someone who can assist them with plan implementation.
  • Review clients' accounts and plans regularly to determine whether life changes, economic changes, environmental concerns, or financial performance indicate a need for plan reassessment.
  • Manage client portfolios, keeping client plans up-to-date.
  • Contact clients periodically to determine any changes in their financial status.
  • Prepare or interpret for clients information such as investment performance reports, financial document summaries, or income projections.
  • Recruit and maintain client bases.
  • Explain to clients the personal financial advisor's responsibilities and the types of services to be provided.
  • Investigate available investment opportunities to determine compatibility with client financial plans.
  • Guide clients in the gathering of information, such as bank account records, income tax returns, life and disability insurance records, pension plans, or wills.
  • Monitor financial market trends to ensure that client plans are responsive.
  • Recommend financial products, such as stocks, bonds, mutual funds, or insurance.
  • Meet with clients' other advisors, such as attorneys, accountants, trust officers, or investment bankers, to fully understand clients' financial goals and circumstances.
  • Devise debt liquidation plans that include payoff priorities and timelines.
  • Open accounts for clients and disburse funds from accounts to creditors as agent for clients.

What Personal Financial Advisors Should Be Good At

  • Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
  • Written Comprehension - The ability to read and understand information and ideas presented in writing.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Deductive Reasoning - The ability to apply general rules to specific problems to produce answers that make sense.
  • Inductive Reasoning - The ability to combine pieces of information to form general rules or conclusions (includes finding a relationship among seemingly unrelated events).
  • Written Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in writing so others will understand.
  • Problem Sensitivity - The ability to tell when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong. It does not involve solving the problem, only recognizing there is a problem.
  • Speech Recognition - The ability to identify and understand the speech of another person.
  • Speech Clarity - The ability to speak clearly so others can understand you.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Mathematical Reasoning - The ability to choose the right mathematical methods or formulas to solve a problem.

What Personal Financial Advisors Should Be Interested In

  • Enterprising - Enterprising occupations frequently involve starting up and carrying out projects. These occupations can involve leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes they require risk taking and often deal with business.
  • Conventional - Conventional occupations frequently involve following set procedures and routines. These occupations can include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually there is a clear line of authority to follow.

What Personal Financial Advisors Need to Learn

  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Economics and Accounting - Knowledge of economic and accounting principles and practices, the financial markets, banking and the analysis and reporting of financial data.
  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Sales and Marketing - Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
  • Administration and Management - Knowledge of business and management principles involved in strategic planning, resource allocation, human resources modeling, leadership technique, production methods, and coordination of people and resources.
  • Mathematics - Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
  • Psychology - Knowledge of human behavior and performance; individual differences in ability, personality, and interests; learning and motivation; psychological research methods; and the assessment and treatment of behavioral and affective disorders.
  • Computers and Electronics - Knowledge of circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
  • Law and Government - Knowledge of laws, legal codes, court procedures, precedents, government regulations, executive orders, agency rules, and the democratic political process.
  • Education and Training - Knowledge of principles and methods for curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Leaf iconThis career is a green occupation.
Sun iconThis career has a bright outlook.
Median Salary: $90,530

This page includes information from O*NET OnLine by the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration (USDOL/ETA). Used under the CC BY 4.0 license.