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Industry Challenges and Fee Compression are Creating Headwinds for Female Advisors, According to Edward Jones Survey

Industry Challenges and Fee Compression are Creating Headwinds for Female Advisors, According to Edward Jones Survey

Women look to professional development to meet increasing industry demands

PR Newswire

ST. LOUIS, Feb. 19, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- A recent survey of Edward Jones female financial advisors ahead of the firm's Fifth Women's Conference found that the majority of respondents (31 percent) said they consider new or impending industry regulations to be the biggest challenge to grow their business as a financial advisor in 2020. Other concerns included fee compression (23 percent) and geopolitical uncertainty (17 percent).

Edward Jones (PRNewsFoto/Edward Jones)

Respondents said that professional development plays a crucial role in keeping pace with myriad challenges. More than half (55 percent) noted that they plan on leveraging the resources available through the firm as a means to pursue professional development in 2020. Additionally, one in four respondents said they plan to attend industry events and conferences for professional development.

"Ongoing training and development are critical to staying ahead of the evolving regulations and macro-economic factors impacting our industry," said Patty Carter, principal of Branch Team Talent Acquisition at Edward Jones. "At Edward Jones, we continue to invest in programs that support the development of our female financial advisors, such as Women's Initiative for New Growth Strategies. Our model allows for training tailored to each stage of a financial advisor's career; ensuring they have the knowledge they need to continue to best serve clients."   

These factors may also influence client attraction and retention strategies. When asked what strategies they will use to attract more clients and grow their practice in 2020, an overwhelming majority of respondents (85 percent) plan to leverage existing client relationships (or word of mouth) to grow, focusing on the personal relationships they've cultivated. The remaining 15 percent plan to host educational events in the community (7%), leverage digital marketing (4%), attend networking events (3%) and advertise in local media and at events (1%).

"While leveraging existing relationships still remains a viable strategy for female advisors to attract new clients, with fee compression, financial advisors will need an innovative approach to reaching prospective clients," Carter said. "We continue to be committed to providing business planning and marketing support to our financial advisors, so they can focus on doing what's most important – providing an exceptional client experience."

An Optimistic Outlook

The survey found that 52 percent of respondents say they feel the barrier to career progression for women in the financial services industry is improving, and that women have an equal opportunity to succeed in the industry.

When asked what would be most impactful for financial services firms to help attract women to the financial service industry, almost half (46 percent) of respondents said clear visibility of women in executive leadership positions, where they have more of a noticeable impact and can determine firmwide policy. Additionally, 27 percent of the respondents noted that more access to financial classes for high school and college students could help lead them to a financial advisor career and would be most impactful.

To be successful throughout the different stages of their careers, 30 percent of respondents said that, beyond building their practices, seeking out a mentor and focusing on that relationship is most important for women early in their careers.

"While the numbers show that female financial advisors feel there are increasingly more opportunities for women in financial services, it's imperative to note the role women leaders, who are helping to mentor the next generation of female advisors, play in continuing this positive trend. Access to solid mentorship is critical for financial advisors early in their career, so cultivating strong female leaders at Edward Jones to deliver this mentorship supports our commitment to our financial advisors and our clients." 

Methodology

The online survey of 204 top-earning female financial advisors was conducted in advance of Edward Jones' Fifth Women's Conference. Out of 3,100 of the firm's women financial advisors, the top 250 qualified to attend the conference.

About Edward Jones

Edward Jones, a FORTUNE 500 firm headquartered in St. Louis, provides financial services in the U.S. and, through its affiliate, in Canada. Every aspect of the firm's business, from the investments its financial advisors offer to the location of its branch offices caters to individual investors. The firm's 18,000-plus financial advisors serve more than 7 million clients and care for $1.3 trillion in assets under management.  The Edward Jones website is at www.edwardjones.com, and its recruiting Web site is www.careers.edwardjones.com. Member SIPC.

Contact: Denvol Haye, 646-818-9249, dhaye@prosek.com

Cision View original content to download multimedia:http://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/industry-challenges-and-fee-compression-are-creating-headwinds-for-female-advisors-according-to-edward-jones-survey-301007243.html

SOURCE Edward Jones



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