FINANCIAL ADVISOR: Description, Jobs, Companies, Career, (+ Easy guide to becoming an Advisor)

financial advisor, financial advisor career

When you get sick, you see a doctor, although it is usually advised to see a doctor for regular check-ups in order to stay fit. In the same light, financial advisors are the doctors of the financial world. The job description of a financial advisor is to give professional solutions to financial problems. This article will help you understand better the various types of financial advisors, jobs and also how to go about your financial advisor career.

What is Financial Advisor?

Financial Advisors are professionals that provide expert advice on financial matters. They also guide clients through making informed financial decisions. They render other services like managing investments, planning tax, financial management, personal finances etc.

However, before a financial advisor conducts any business with the public, he/she must have a license. There are various kinds of license depending on the kind of services they render.

Financial Advisor Description

A financial advisor spends his day recommending strategies for financial planning and also helps clients with financial objectives like savings, budgeting, insurance, etc. For any financial advisor to be successful, they need not just to have the license mentioned above but also deep knowledge and understanding of financial products in the market.

The description of a financial advisor is not limited to executing trades for their clients in the market. However, irrespective of the type of financial advisor, the primary goal is to help clients achieve their financial goals. This can be done by periodically reevaluating the financial situation of the client from time to time.

Lastly, an advisor can work as an employee in a firm, can also work as an independently as a freelancer or consultant.

Types of Financial Advisor

Financial advisors with the same aim of helping clients or companies reach their financial goal. Whereas, there are different ways to achieve this goal, which is why they specialize in different fields. That further explains why there are various types of financial advisors.

#1. Investment Advisors

They are usually called stockbrokers because they buy and sell a variety of investments on behalf of their clients. They act as investment representatives for companies, especially brokerage firms. By buying and selling securities they like, mutual funds, bonds, stocks etc. they make their commission

Importantly, before any financial advisor trades investments, they must be registered at the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority. After which they will be issued a license.

#2. Customer Service Representative

This type of financial advisors works in a financial institution that handles loans and accounts.

Specifically, they help customers with decisions about credit card types and the kind of bank account to use. They can also help customers decide which terms of loan or mortgages benefits them more by comparing and contrasting all available options.

Advisors that specialize as customer service representatives also render financial advice as part of their services. However, those recommendations must be in line with the financial firm they work for. For instance, if a customer is having a hard time deciding which kind of mortgage to go for, the advisor can only advice based on the kinds of mortgages the financial institutions has.

It is important to know that, the customers don’t pay the advisors directly. The financial advisors get their pay from their employer.

#3. Financial Coach

They deal on the basics of financial literacy skills. That is to say that these advisors help their clients make smart money choices in order to build wealth. Some of these choices may include; how to save money, how to create a budgets, how to decrease spending etc.

#4. Investment Adviser

After the financial coach has helped with the basic money skills, a financial adviser can help with managing investments or giving useful advices on how best to invest.

They also work for firms, providing investment advice to the firm. Helping them analyses when and how best to invest

#5. Financial Planner

Just like mentioned above, financial planning is one of the responsibilities of a financial advisor. A proper financial plan can help an individual or firm reach whatever financial goals they have set for themselves. Financial planning includes; insurance, tax planning, investments, and risk management.

#6. Financial Consultant

This type of financial advisor works as a consultant which people consult for financial advices. Most financial consultants have certifications as a Chattered Financial Consultant.

#7. Personal Banker

Most of the time these advisors work for the bank. They are trained and registered to sell investments like, savings bong. They don’t get direct payment for their services, the institution they work for pay them according to agreed terms.

Financial Advisor Jobs

Job title

Financial Assistance Advisor

Location: ECPI University Virginia Beach, VA 23462

Description: The Financial Assistance Advisor is responsible for providing financial aid support and counseling services to both incoming and existing students…

Apply here

Job title

Financial Assistance Advisor in a state Bank

Location: Quincy, IL 62306

Description: We’re seeking a licensed Financial Advisor who is driven & motivated to succeed, can work independently, has the ability to build and maintain new & existing client relationships, and is a good steward of the community…

Apply here      

Job title

Fully Remote Financial Aid Advisor

Location: CSU-Global Campus

Description: The Financial Aid Advisor supports the university mission by assisting students in understanding their financing options and account balances…

 Apply here

Job title: Merrill Lynch Financial Advisor Development Program

Location: FRISCO, Texas San Antonio Texas; Denver Colorado

Description: At Merrill, we’re creating real, meaningful relationships with individuals across the country. We are looking for the next generation of Financial Advisors – those with a passion for growing a long-term career and a drive to make our clients’ financial lives better…

Apply here  

Financial Advisor Companies

Before choosing a financial advisory firm, it is important to carry out proper research to know the firm that suits your needs better. However, it is important to consider past records and the present progress of a financial advisory firm/company before choosing one. Choosing a company that is significantly transparent is equally very important.

5 top financial advisory companies

These companies are called the best for various reasons, some of which include, innovations, customer satisfaction, low fees, clean financial records etc.  Since they are large and offer lots of services. It is a whole lot easy to find what exactly suits you here;

  • Vanguard
  • Fidelity
  • BlackRock
  • State Street Advisors
  • J.P Morgan Asset Management
  • Businessyield Consult


This is the largest Investment company in the world. BlackRock operates in 30 countries; it also has clients i9n about 100 countries. Which is why it is called a powerhouse. Interestingly, as of 30th of June 2019 BlackRock manages $7.34 trillion. Similarly, they make about 25% of its AUM through its iShares. Which is what made them popular.


Investment management can’t be mentioned without Vanguard. It can be likened to Walmart in the retail sector, because vanguard has made so much name through low expense ratios, investments management, varieties of offering and cheap prices.

As of the 31st of January 2020 vanguard made about $6.3 trillion in total AUM. Above all, one very significant thing about vanguard is their low prices which allows investors to have much returns. As a result of this, they have so much customers.

Fidelity Investment

This company is one of the most rated in investment advisory. This is as a result of customer satisfaction, and online support. Hence, the name fidelity which means loyalty and support wasn’t just a coincidence. Fidelity manages about $2.96 trillion in assets.

State Street Global Advisors

As at 30th of September 2019 State Street manages $2.95 trillion. They offer Investment management services that involves a large number of clients, not excluding the retail investors. The company offers services to clients by creating, as well as managing investment strategies for government and corporations and even non-profit organizations. State Street Mangers manages one the most popular exchange traded funds which is the SPDR & 500 ETF.

J.P Morgan Asset Management

This company was founded by John Pierpont Morgan. It is one of the most important private financial institutions in the U.S. Further, J.P Morgan which is now JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM) is the largest bank the U.S and also one of the biggest financial merging in the world.

Jamie Dimon the present CEO of JPMorgan Chase & Co is one of the financial Professionals that is highly celebrated in the US and also one of the few bank CEO to become a billionaire. He often gives financial advices to world leaders. As of March 31st 2020, the company’s asset management manages about $1.9 trillion in assets.

Businessyield Consult

Business Yield Consult is an investment and accounting firm focused on financial risk analysis of businesses. It’s based in Nigeria helping local and foreign business investors make the right investment choice in Nigeria.

 If your intention is to build a business in Nigeria or Africa. Then Business Yield Consult through their idea-generating department, helps you mine the best of idea considering the 5ps of marketing. – Place (Intended location of investment), People (your targeted customer or Market segment), Product (value proposition) price (cost analysis, budgeting, selling price, income forecast and detailed business financial implications). Then Promotion (How best to promote your business in such location).

 In a simple way, You answer a few questions and BusinessYield consult gives you the best-suited ideas. Also, takes you by the hand to build a business that gives you a good return on your investment with insured risks. Don’t want to build a business but want to invest? Business yield consult helps you spot and analyze high yield investment with low risk to invest in.

Also Read: 5 types of Business Consultants in High Demand

Financial Advisor Career

Financial Advisor as a career provides a wide range of opportunities in various career fields. If the major specification is to give valuable financial advice, it has a very flexible work schedule i.e. it can be done in so many ways even virtually.

As a financial advisor, you can be in absolute control of your career. However, there a few cons this career which include stress, rigorous regulations, building a client base.

According to the Breau of Labor Statistics, there are 271,900 financial advisors in the U.S.

Read Also: Business Ethics

5 Steps on How to become a Financial Advisor

If you have always wondered how to start your career in financial advisory, these steps are for you!

#1 Get a Bachelor’s Degree

This is usually the first and very important step to becoming a financial advisor. It would be great to ask those ahead of you what it’s like, at least to have an idea of what to expect. There are so many fields that are in line with Financial Advisory like, accounting, economics, business or statistics is required to become a financial advisor. The major sub courses in these are risk management, investments, taxes, estate planning etc.

However, you can decide to further to after the bachelor’s degree.

Note: This degree can also be gotten virtually by applying for schools that accept virtual students.

#2. Complete an Internship

Most of the times, school offers the theoretical aspect of the program you enrolled for. It would be wonderful to combine it with practical experience. It will help your learning experience in a huge way.

Interestingly, this internship can be done while in school. You can find sometime in your schedule and fix it in. If you are a part-time student, then you can get a part-time job in that field too. Moreover, it also helps your connecting network for a good job in the future.

#3. Get a Job

To get a job as a financial advisor might not be easy, but now you have earned you a degree holder and an experienced intern it gives you a certain advantage. You need to put your applications out in several places. However, staying updated for job openings and updates.

You need to make sure you write your resume in a way that sells yourself and your qualifications well.


#4. Get Certified

When you get a job, you will come to understand that there are so many limitations for financial advisors that are not certified. To enable you to move higher your career as a financial advisor, you will need a proper certification. However, the essence of getting a job first before certification is to e able to make informed decisions on your area of specialty.

This is a very competitive career therefore a certification would definitely go a long way. Here are some common certifications that you can get as a financial advisor;

  • Chattered Financial Analysis
  • Certified Financial Planner
  • Securities Licenses
  • Insurance License

#5. Further Studies

As you go further in your financial advisory career, you will find out that to reach the peak of your career there are some graduate courses you might need to take to develop yourself even better. Learning is lifelong process it never stops, so you have to be prepared to keep learning as an advisor.

This further studies don’t necessarily mean you should go back to school to pursue a degree, you could pick some courses relevant to your field and study at your own convenient time.

Read Also: Wise Investment Tips for Young Business Newbies

Those in the educational field can decide to get their doctorate degree and even become professors in Financial Accounting.

Who Needs a Financial Advisor?

Some experts say that a good rule of thumb is to hire a financial advisor when you can save 20% of your annual income. Others say that you should get one when your finances get more complicated, like when you get an inheritance from a parent or want to add to your retirement savings.

How do Financial Advisors make Money?

Pay for financial advisors comes in three forms: Advisors that work on a fee basis may bill their clients hourly, annually, or for a set amount. Financial advisors who work on commission earn their money from the investments they recommend. Financial advisors that charge their clients a fee also make money through commissions.

What are the Skills needed to be a Financial Advisor?

To be a financial advisor there are some necessary skills you need to practice and they include:

  • Empathy
  • Business development skills
  • Research
  • Wealth management
  • Analytical thinking
  • Interpersonal communication
  • Detail orientation
  • Client relationship skills

Is it Hard to be a Financial Advisor?

Being a financial advisor comes with positive and negative factors. Looking at the negative factor, it includes a lot of pressure, lots of work to get started, and a never-ending stream of rules and regulations that must be followed. However, there is a significant risk of burnout in this field despite its financial rewards.

What is the Difference Between a Financial Planner and a Financial Advisor?

To put it simply, financial planners are experts at helping people and businesses develop and implement plans to achieve their long-term monetary objectives. Brokers, money managers, insurance agents, and bankers are all included under the umbrella term “financial advisor.” Financial planners are not governed by a centralised organisation.

How do Financial Advisors Get Clients?

Gaining clients as a new financial advisor is a numbers game that can be gained through the following outreach approaches, but at a slower pace: The act of making an unsolicited phone call. Going around and knocking on people’s doors. Provision of free food in an effort to increase presentation attendance.

What is the Hardest Part of being a Financial Advisor?

The hardest aspect of making it as a financial advisor is acquiring new clients. You require a well-developed marketing strategy and consistent job-seeking to build a clientele.


In conclusion, Financial advisor as a career is certainly broad. So as a business owner it is important for you to consider the various types of financial advisors and then employ the one that suits your firm perfectly. It is also advisable to allow them to make the financial decisions as it is their job as financial advisors to make sure your firm makes smart financial decisions which will eventually result to the main goal of every business which is to increase cash flow and make enough profit.

You might want to read: ministry of finance

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What does a financial advisor really do?

Financial Advisors are professionals that provide expert advice on financial matters. They also guide clients through making informed financial decisions. They render other services like managing investments, planning tax, financial management, personal finances, etc

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