Financial Consultant Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

A Financial Consultant, also known as a Financial Advisor, gives financial advice and guidance to individuals to help them meet their professional or personal goals and remain financially stable. Their main duties include building financial strategies for clients, providing financial advice on taxes, investments and retirement plans and staying updated on the changing economic conditions and financial markets.

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Financial Consultant Duties and Responsibilities

A Financial Consultant needs to perform several duties that span diverse areas—from maintaining good relationships with clients to using financial techniques to choosing the best investment instruments for an individual’s or company’s unique circumstances. Here are several general duties and responsibilities of a Financial Consultant:

  • Providing financial advice to clients based on their circumstances, appetite for risk and desired level of future investment growth
  • Analyzing client information and future financial projections to ascertain the best investment solutions and strategies for clients
  • Maintaining good relationships with existing clients and adapting their advice and strategies to meet unexpected changes in financial circumstances
  • Producing financial reports and communicating to clients what the figures mean
  • Meeting all regulatory requirements
  • Keeping up to date with the latest financial products and regulatory changes

What Does a Financial Consultant Do?

Financial Consultants work in either an office setting or as an independent contractor providing financial advice to business professionals to help ensure the organization stays financially healthy and meets all their budgetary goals. They may also work for individuals to help them make logical personal investments. Financial Consultants regularly assess an individual’s life changes and adjust their financial strategy accordingly to help them remain in good financial standing.

Financial Consultant Skills and Qualifications

A successful Financial Consultant candidate will have the skills and qualifications needed to perform this wide range of duties and responsibilities. Employers want to see a combination of soft skills and technical skills in a Financial Consultant. Though these will vary with the company, some of the most common ones include:

  • Excellent interpersonal skills with an emphasis on actively listening to and understanding clients’ needs
  • Strong knowledge of a range of financial products, including insurance, pensions, savings, stocks etc.
  • Good understanding of relevant regulatory policies that govern the financial sector
  • Able to create financial projections and explain complex financial information clearly

Financial Consultant Salary Expectations

The average annual salary of a Financial Consultant is $87,824 per year. Individual salaries may vary from this average depending on the size and financial services offered by the employer, the geographical area and the experience of the Financial Consultant. 

Financial Consultant Education and Training Requirements

Financial Consultants typically need at least a bachelor’s degree to find employment. Most companies look for candidates with a degree in a relevant major, such as business, finance or economics. Many Financial Consultants further their education by earning graduate degrees in financial planning, business administration and other related areas. Some investment companies and jurisdictions require that Financial Consultant candidates have achieved a Certified Financial Planner (CFP) certification. 

Financial Consultant Experience Requirements

Many companies only hire Financial Consultants after they have completed at least an internship at a financial institution that provides financial consulting or advisory services. For entry-level roles, candidates might get hired without any experience, but employers will give priority to people who have relevant work experience. Some companies also require that Financial Consultants successfully complete a company training program before they become full-time employees or work without supervision. 

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Frequently asked questions about Financial Consultants

 

What settings do Financial Consultants typically work in?

Financial Consultants who work independently usually spend a majority of their time traveling to clients’ homes or offices, meeting with them in person to collaborate on an effective financial strategy. They also spend time finding new clients through sending emails, building advertisements and making cold calls. They may rent out their own office space or work from home. 

Some Financial Consultants work in the office of an organization working solely with that company to build effective financial strategies that help the business meet its financial goals and make wise investments.

 

What makes a good Financial Consultant?

A great Financial Consultant should be passionate about finances and the economy, as they’re expected to regularly stay updated on economic news and market trends. They should also have experience building budgets and handling a company’s finances. 

Strong Financial Consultant candidates have sharp analytical skills to regularly review company statistics and data to make accurate predictions that drive their financial investment decisions. They must possess great collaboration and communication skills since they’re regularly working with clients and leadership teams to build valuable financial goals and strategies to help individuals or organizations financially thrive. 

 

What's the difference between a Financial Consultant and a Financial Planner?

While the responsibilities of a Financial Consultant and Financial Planner tend to overlap with each other, there are key differences between the two. Financial Consultants focus primarily on helping individuals and companies build effective financial plans and continue to assist them in managing and maintaining a healthy financial budget. 

Financial Planners focus solely on the planning aspects of financial strategies. They’ll work closely with companies to plan their finances and to build strategies that help companies achieve their long-term goals. Once they’ve built, scheduled and communicated their plans to clients, they’ll move on to the next job, while a Financial Consultant would oversee and help manage the implementation process.

 

Do Financial Consultants have different responsibilities in different industries?

Most Financial Consultants have similar responsibilities of planning and maintaining financial plans for companies and individuals. They can work in a wide variety of industries and are expected to have extensive knowledge of the industry they work in to more accurately advise their clients. 

Some Financial Consultants specialize in insurance and will guide clients on the best insurances to invest in. Others may work for businesses, helping them improve their financial status and build a more manageable budget. There are also Financial Consultants who support nonprofit and government entities, helping them build funding strategies that improve both the organization and the community.

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