More advisers needed

The financial services industry is in the midst of a skills shortage with businesses crying out for new faces to fill their ranks.

Wednesday, November 3rd 2021, 6:49AM 2 Comments

by Matthew Martin

Employment website Seek has over 150 jobs advertised for financial advisers and support staff while Trade Me Jobs has more than 130 positions available in the financial services sector.

This does not include IT professionals, software developers or admin staff attached to the industry.

Positions range from entry-level and graduate advisers to senior-level advisers, business partners, claims managers, consultants and brokers, loss adjusters and product managers.

One example is Haven, an Auckland-based accountancy and financial services firm that currently has 18 jobs on offer on its website.

The company is looking for financial and mortgage advisers to join its team across the country, from Northland to Invercargill and everywhere in between.

Financial Services Council chief executive Richard Klipin says the labour market is tight and is going to get tighter.

"Financial services have emerged from Covid in many ways is in a very good space, particularly financial advice because we have been an essential service.

"It has put huge demands on finding capable, experienced staff and added pressure on capability and wages."

Klipin says while the labour shortage is probably going to be a short-term problem exacerbated by Covid, it's a nice problem to have and the market will "auto-correct" itself.

"People are going to have to be agile in terms of the skill sets they recruit.

"Every problem has a silver lining and no doubt people are getting snapped up across the sector - partly driven by [labour] markets and partly driven by regulations.

"In many ways, it's a better time to join the industry in terms of that change.

"Businesses developing advice models to bring in younger advisers will do well and is being driven mostly by consumer needs."

Former FMA chief executive Rob Everett told Good Returns in a recent interview that finding the right people has been tough.

"Financial resources at the moment isn't the big issue for us, it's finding the people, particularly when the borders are closed and with all of the industry hiring people.

"The capability build we need to do to regulate well is quite intimidating.

"At the moment, there are fewer people available and those people can demand packages that we can't necessarily pay.

"The challenge will be just how quickly we can build that capability now and I suspect that would be slower than we would like," Everett says.

The Adviser Platform (TAP) managing director Ryan Edwards says there are not enough advisers in the country and those in the industry are stretched to capacity.

"It's hard for businesses to recruit, manage and maintain staff. It's challenging out there and I don't think we as an industry do enough to promote what a great industry it is to work in.

"Financial advice is a great career, it's client-facing and all about helping people, it's flexible and can be financially rewarding, and there's a huge amount of opportunity out there right now."

Edwards says TAP has run two "new to market adviser academy" courses over the past year where they help businesses with adviser training and development.

The course is two weeks of classroom training about how to actively become successful advisers and TAP plans to fill another intake of 15 to 20 advisers in February next year.

Tags: Financial advice financial advisers FMA Haven recruitment Richard Klipin Rob Everett Ryan Edwards The Adviser Platform

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Comments from our readers

On 4 November 2021 at 3:10 pm Do what is right said:
The issue is often about how to remunerate those that are taken on. Owners of financial service businesses often feel that they are "owed a living" so provide poor packages for new advisers. Often the remuneration model is heavily weighted to the adviser business and then they wonder why people do not stay around to be ripped off. The foolishness of course, is that if there are no new advisers, there are no buyers of businesses. It is a "shoot yourself in the foot" behaviour. At some stage, existing advisers need to seriously consider how important it is to have a succession plan in place. If they think taking advantage of new people is the model, they are foolish. How about recruiting new advisers into our business and not 'screwing them over'. I would have purchased a book of business a long time ago, but, existing advisers think their book is worth more than it really is so they are not willing to sell unless they get top price.

No room for new advisers because the existing advisers have brutal self interest above commercial sense.
On 5 November 2021 at 10:20 am Matron said:
There are other more significant factors at play other than just benevolent employers.

Consider that:
New entrants cannot provide any advice until they have their full L5 certificate;
Banks and insurers will not accredit a new entrant until they have had a minimum (six months) period of practicing experience;
'New Adviser' training courses run by insurers are nothing more than just camouflaged product and compliance training;
Banks have zero interest in assisting supporting any new entrants to the industry that compete with their over-the-counter channel.

Little wonder then that the barriers to entry and actually earning a living these days are very off-putting for prospective Advisers and employers alike.

Add into the mix that insurers are currently so risk adverse they are inactivating existing agencies left, right and centre.

So no, no room for new Advisers in the current environment.

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