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Category: Loyalty · 5 min read

Solving the New-Talent Riddle to Effectively Recruit Financial Professionals

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on December 20, 2018

author profile photo

on December 20, 2018

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New financial professionals are the lifeblood of a growing agency. But how do you find new professionals, and how do you keep your pipeline of prospects full?  

Right now, the unemployment rate is the lowest it’s been since 2000.1 Plus, the financial services industry isn’t exactly overflowing with skilled workers. Research from Korn Ferry, a management consulting firm, predicts that by 2030, the financial and business services industry will be short 10.5 million workers, which is $1.3 trillion in lost revenue.2  

Thanks to our current low unemployment rate, unfilled jobs are becoming the norm. The Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) found that nearly 60 percent of employers have open positions that remain vacant for more than 12 weeks.3 On average, each vacancy costs more than $800,000 annually.3 

A TD Ameritrade survey revealed that 22 percent of registered investment advisors (RIAs) said the shortage of young financial professionals is a threat to their business growth.4  

But you can be proactive in addressing this challenge. To help you navigate through the tight labor pool and the looming workforce shortage to effectively recruit financial professionals, use these five tips.


Figure out the Type of Financial Professional you Need  

What’s your ideal financial professional? Young? Experienced? What you’re recruiting for depends on your needs and wants. If you want someone that is low maintenance and self-sustaining, then a more experienced financial professional is probably who you want to target. Younger, less experienced financial professionals will need help growing and establishing their client base, but if you have the time and the willingness to train the next generation of financial professionals, then it is time well-spent. Coaching them into successful financial professionals may drive a strong sense of loyalty and open up a whole new talent pool for your business. You could also be looking for a more specific kind of financial professional, one with certain product knowledge or skill-sets.  

Now that you know what types of financial professionals you want to recruit, you can start to define your recruitment message, hone your brand and pitch, and find the right areas to recruit from.


Lead with Your Brand 

Your brand is your company’s identity, and it shows how you’re different from your competition, and the specific value you have. Do you have an established brand? If not, take some time to think this through. What makes you different? What unique thing can you offer your ideal financial professional targets that your competition can’t? A brand is a central piece to establishing an effective recruitment plan, so take the time to get it right.  

When you have your brand down, use it. As you recruit, explain your organization’s mission, value proposition, and what sets you apart from other agencies. This clear communication on what your organization is all about can help you stand out in the financial professional’s mind as they consider your offer.  

As you recruit, explain your organization’s mission, value proposition, and what sets you apart from other agencies.

Add Value to Their Business 

What’s in it for me? That’s what the financial professionals you’re trying to recruit will be asking. To help them out, clearly state how they could benefit by partnering with you. Will you provide them more access to products they want to sell? Could you increase their business or profits? Tell them.  

To drum up some ideas, put yourself in their shoes. What are their needs? What do they want out of an agency? Once you have that down, demonstrate how you fit their needs and can provide them with the tools to succeed and grow.  


Reach out in the Right Place  

A big part of recruiting comes down to where you’re reaching out. Recruit where your ideal financial professionals are, whether that’s in industry magazines, online, at conferences, or on social media. Or explore other methods like direct mail, email, or phone (if you have that information). Be smart about where and how you’re recruiting. Again, think about it from the financial professional’s perspective. They have no idea who you are or that you want to recruit them. So, how do you change that? How do you get them to know who you are and recognize that they should partner with you? Reach out to them where they are, and clearly explain how you can help them.  

Think about it from the financial professional’s perspective. They have no idea who you are or that you want to recruit them. So, how do you change that?

Look for the Right Fit 

If the recruiting process is slow going, it can be tempting to lower your expectations and settle for someone that doesn’t have all the requirements you’re looking for. Don’t give in. It’s important that the financial professionals you recruit are the right fit, because it can make all the difference.  

With this in mind, make sure that your potential recruits have the necessary qualities to do business with. To do this, ask them about their business, their career goals, and their ideal agency partner, and then explain your side of the business, too. A good fit will go a long way toward keeping your financial professionals happy.  


Don’t Give Up 

Here’s something to keep in mind as you start the process: recruiting financial professionals is no easy task, and it can take a while to find the right person for the job. But don’t give up. Keep searching. Recruiting takes patience, but it can be worth the wait.  

The coming workforce shortage doesn’t have to impact you. If you take intentional steps to recruit new talent and reach them effectively, you can avoid the tight labor pool woes and make it easier to find quality financial professionals in our industry.  



1. Arnold, Chris and Schneider, Avie. “Unemployment Rate Drops to 3.8 Percent, Lowest Since 2000. NPR. June 1, 2018. Web.  

2. Korn Ferry. “Future of Work: The Global Talent Crunch.” 2018. Web.  

3. Maurer, Roy. “Training People for Jobs to Fill the Skills Gap.” Society for Human Resource Management. Sep. 7, 2017. Web.  

4. TD Ameritrade. “RIAs Tell TD Ameritrade That 41% of Incoming Clients Will be Gen X and Millennials by 2023.” May 9, 2018. Web.  


For Financial Professional use only, not for use with the general public. #18-0838-111219

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Written By

Mark Williams

President and CEO

Mark Williams is the President/CEO of Brokers International. Over his more than 25 years of financial services experience, Mark has been both a producing independent agent in the field and a home office leader consulting to agencies and field marketing organizations. Currently, Mark is focused on the future of the insurance industry, from the disruptions of InsurTech and robo-advisors to the changing demographics and needs of customers. He also is an avid mentor, helping financial professionals navigate the industry.

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