What does the financial planner of the future look like?

The financial planning industry is in the midst of a transformation. While there are significant challenges, there are also opportunities for existing financial planners and other finance professionals seeking to upskill.

Industry disruption creates new opportunities

Ongoing turbulence within the financial services industry in Australia – and globally – is providing unprecedented opportunities for the next generation of aspiring financial planners and advisors.

Market uncertainty and volatility, combined with an increasingly complex investment environment, makes financial planning and choosing the right investment strategy more challenging for the average Australian. The current low-yield environment, unstable property prices, and record-low interest rates are also creating ambiguity for investors seeking capital growth and stronger income returns.

Set against the backdrop of the expected regulatory and public policy interventions flowing from the Financial Services Royal Commission, the need for astute financial planners has never been greater.

Growing demand

Australia’s household disposable income is expected to increase over the next two years. As a result, households will have a greater ability to spend and invest – meaning increased demand for sound financial advice.

The role of Australia’s ageing population also cannot be underestimated. According to the Association of Superannuation Funds of Australia, the current retirement savings pool in Australia sits at $2.8 trillion. By 2027, nearly one in five Australians will be over 65 years old and have a sizeable asset base (Older Australia at a Glance, Australian Institute of Health and Welfare).

Current wealth distribution puts Australia on track to see the greatest intergenerational wealth transfer in history with baby boomers, who make up 25 per cent of the population, expected to transfer significant amounts of private wealth to their beneficiaries within the next 10-20 years.

As a result, it is estimated 2.1 million Australians will use a financial planner by 2021 – up from 1.6 million in 2017 (Canstar).

Rebuilding trust

Trust in the financial sector plummeted following the Financial Services Royal Commission. Global research consultancy CoreData tracked consumers level of trust in financial planning during 2018 into 2019, reporting a mere 36 per cent approval rating in the first quarter of 2019 – significantly lower than the 60 per cent rating recorded for first quarter 2018.

It has been reported that the number of financial planners has currently decreased by 32 per cent, and it has been forecasted that thousands more could leave the industry by 2021 (Money Management). There is an opportunity for the next generation of financial advisors, equipped with the skills needed to navigate a tightened regulatory environment, higher standards of ethics and stringent education requirements, to capitalise on this gap in the market.

The tension between falling numbers of financial planners and growing demand for financial advice provides an unprecedented opportunity for career changers and new market entrants.

This mass exodus from financial planning has also opened doors for a new style of financial advisor. Today’s financial advisors will require a combination of emotional intelligence and intellect to be able to empathise with clients while understanding their fiscal responsibility. Acting in a client’s best interests and building trusting relationships with clients will become an important skill.

Future financial advisors

  • Accountants, economists and other finance professionals seeking a career change
  • Legal professional’s adept at problem solving, with an existing interest in compliance and regulatory frameworks
  • Mathematics and IT graduates with the numeric proficiency to excel in delivering quality financial advice using innovative technologies
  • Engineers with an analytical mind, looking for a new challenge

If you’re considering a career change, start a FASEA-approved degree in financial planning now and position yourself to fill a much-needed market gap, while equipping you with advanced knowledge that places you at the forefront of the sector.

The Graduate Diploma in Business (Financial Planning), available through QUT Online, is a FASEA-approved course that will equip you with the knowledge you need to lead the industry as a professional financial advisor. It is part of the QUT Business School’s Triple Crown accreditation and is also accredited with financial planning industry body the Financial Planning Education Council (part of Financial Planning Association of Australia).

To find out how this course can help you make the transition to financial planning, book a call with one of our course consultants.

Ready to apply?

Apply online by filling out our application form or speak to a Course Consultant on 1300 104 196.

Apply Now