Financial Planner Job Description: Top Duties and Qualifications

Last updated: June 22, 2022

A Financial Planner, or Wealth Management Advisor, reviews a company’s or individual’s financial statements and finds any potential risks or opportunities for growth. Their main duties include developing strategies to help clients maintain their financial goals, analyzing company documents like expenses, liabilities and income and providing their guidance and expertise in insurance and investment planning.

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Financial Planner duties and responsibilities

While a Financial Planner’s primary duty is to strategize ways to achieve the financial goals of their employer, several unique duties and responsibilities work together to accomplish that end. The most important duties and responsibilities necessary to excel at the position include:

  • Provide planning, advisement, insurance and investment services to clients to meet their vision
  • Analyze the company’s current financial status, going into enough detail to understand their specific needs
  • Work with a team of staff to keep track of records and file updates
  • Maintain working relationships with a variety of clients and/or departments, and keep them apprised of any financial developments
  • Act as a first-contact liaison to insurance providers and other financial professionals
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What does a Financial Planner do?

Financial Planners work either directly for a business or as an independent contractor for organizations or individuals, developing detailed strategies to help them meet their financial goals. They’ll evaluate their clients’ current financial materials and will build a logical and beneficial plan and budget to improve their financial status. 

Financial Planners typically develop financial reports and strategies and present these plans to clients or executives. They’re also responsible for staying updated on current regulations, economic changes and other factors that may affect individuals or businesses financially.

Financial Planner skills and qualifications

To meet these responsibilities, a Financial Planner must have several skills and qualifications to perform the most basic tasks of the job. Analytical skills and financial know-how are essential to be a successful Financial Planner. Here are the most important skills and qualifications for a Financial Planner to have:

  • A Financial Planner needs strong data analysis skills effectively develop strategies for that business to meet their financial goals.
  • An advanced understanding of economics is necessary for a Financial Planner to understand and predict the market to have a greater likelihood of accomplishing company goals.
  • As with any job that provides a service, Financial Planners need to excel at both written and verbal communication. 
  • Almost all aspects of professional finance are regulated, so Financial Planners need to be familiar with the law if they want to successful. 

Financial Planner salary expectations

Financial Planners make an average of $60,107 per year. Salary may depend on level of experience, education and the geographical location. 

Financial Planner education and training requirements

There are several education and training requirements for a Financial Planner. At the most basic level, a bachelor’s degree in finance is required. For Financial Planners to get the best positions, however, they need to be registered as fiduciaries, or financial experts legally required to act in the best interest of their client. Additionally, being a Certified Financial Planner is helpful, as it confirms expertise in a wide variety of financial subjects.

Financial Planner experience requirements

A Financial Planner needs extensive experience to obtain more lucrative positions. Most positions require at least three years of experience, but higher-level positions can require up to 10 years. Financial Planners should generally be experienced in a wide variety of areas, including taxes, estate planning and insurance.

Job description samples for similar positions

If this Financial Planner job description sample doesn’t quite fit the role you need at your business, consider looking at other options. Here are some related job description samples that may be a better fit:

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Frequently asked questions about Financial Planners


What settings do Financial Planners typically work in?

Financial Planners may work in an office environment, developing financial strategies for a company to ensure all departments stay within a reasonable budget and follow the financial strategy they’ve laid out. Other Financial Planners may work in an agency setting, providing financial advice and guidance to multiple companies at a time. 

Some of them are self-employed and work as independent contractors, so they’ll regularly operate from their home office or a remote location. A majority of their time is often spent traveling to and from clients’ offices or homes to provide in-person financial assistance. 


What makes a good Financial Planner?

An effective Financial Planner should have impressive analytical skills, since they’re regularly reviewing a company’s data and statistics to determine sound financial strategies for the business to follow. They should also be great with numbers and mathematics as they’re regularly developing reasonable budgets that keep organizations functioning properly. 

Financial Planners regularly meet with executives and clients to build budgets based on their needs and goals, so they should have strong communication, collaboration and presentation abilities. Strong problem solving and critical thinking skills are also great for the ideal candidate to have as they’re regularly developing ways to improve a company’s current financial situation. 


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

While both roles entail providing financial advice and guidance to clients, Financial Planners and Financial Advisors have slight differences when it comes to their responsibilities. Financial Advisors work more closely with clients on effective strategies to improve personal finances like taxes, investments, mortgages, insurance and retirement. Though they also work with business professionals, a majority of a Financial Advisors’ clientele are individuals. 

Financial Planner can work with both businesses and individuals. When they do work with individuals, they usually only focus on big picture financial items that may affect their professional lives, like insurance investments. 


Do Financial Planners have different responsibilities in different industries?

Financial Planners can work in a wide variety of industries, performing similar tasks of advising clients on effective strategies that enhance their financial performance. Many of them work in basic business settings, advising an organization on how to maintain a reasonable budget and stay financially stable. 

Others may work for insurance companies, advising clients on the best insurance plans for their business to invest in. Some work for healthcare institutions, helping them build budgets and plans to keep the facility operating properly by advising clients to spend a set amount on certain expenses like supplies and equipment.

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