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Career opportunities after CFP

Career opportunities after CFP

If you work for money, you may just end up somewhere, but if you can make money work for you, you are sure to go places! As a Certified Financial Planner (CFP), it is your prime responsibility to guide people in making the money work for them in the most appropriate way. Now that you passed the entire curriculum, you are out there looking for avenues wherein you can channelize your knowledge and expertise. You are aware of your role as a financial planner, but a little confused about the places wherein your services are required are:

1. Banks

Banks have many High Net Worth customers who have excess balances in their account. For such individuals, bank often appoints a Financial Planner or a Relationship Manager who takes care of their accounts. Most of them are CFPs who suggest a financial plan to invest surplus cash in asset classes according to the risk appetite and goals of the clients. Not only this, they also update their clients about their portfolio and recalibrate it according to the situation.

2. Stock brokerage

Most of the stock brokerage firms are focussed towards equity, mutual funds, commodities and derivatives. These brokerages employ CFPs for clients to encourage them to invest in equities and derivatives either directly through the stock markets or mutual funds. In this case, CFPs educate and inform clients about the direction of the stock market, the equities performing well or expected to perform well, the profitable derivative segments etc.

3. AMCs

Asset Management Companies are the fund houses into which investors put their surplus money. Franklin Templeton, ICICI Prudential, HDFC and Quantum are some of the leading fund houses wherein many CFPs work as Investment Advisors. You can be mainly involved in educating people about various products belonging to the fund house and encouraging retail investors to invest in the best-suited funds. You are expected to provide sound advice to people as a result of their expertise and analytical skills.

4. NBFC

These days, Non-Banking Financial Companies (NBFC’s) would also employ CFPs to advice clients on various securities. Since CFPs have profound knowledge on instruments such as shares, stocks, bonds, debentures, etc, they are in a better position to guide clients on whichever investment best suits the client.

5. Insurance Companies

Insurance Companies employ CFPs as they offer a goal-based approach to investing. The financial planners take time to understand the requirements of the clients, their life and investment goals and suggest a suitable policy to them. Many a times, certain insurance companies also involve CFPs while designing new policies, in order to understand the requirements of the people at large.

6. Wealth Management

Wealth Management is a broader arena as compared to Financial Planning. It involves giving advice and having sound knowledge about Structured Products and Alternate Investment avenues. It also involves estate planning and drawing of Will. There are individuals with huge corpus of money who are looking for unbiased advice to channelize their money and protect them for the coming generation. These are aspects which demand the expertise of a CFP.

7. Self-employment

With a sound knowledge base about financial planning, many CFPs decide to set up their practise in their home town or online. The services are fee-based or you can charge a commission from the fund houses for distributing their products. There is a need to customize the investment plan as much as possible and if the CFP is self-employed, you can have a great deal of flexibility as opposed to the situation when you are working for a company. The success of this venture also depends a lot on building inter-personal relations as well as developing trustworthy bond with the clients.

8. Tax consultancy

Tax is a necessary evil and we cannot escape it. It is something that is a must for nation-building but at the same time we all want to pay minimal of it. With the latest knowledge about regulations and tax structure, as a CFP, you are well-equipped to give the most appropriate tax advice. Some CFPs exclusively provide tax consultancy and there is a lot of demand for it. These are professionals who suggest people how to invest their savings or manage their business in order to maximise tax saving.

Other offbeat career avenues:

Apart from the above mentioned career opportunities, there are certain unconventional avenues that can be opted for after a CFP:

Investment specialist: A professional with specialization is always preferred. Some CFPs stick to a niche such as retirement planning or handling HNI clientele. Some choose to opt for Estate Planning on drawing financial plans for trust. These areas are still unexplored in India, hence the career options are huge.

Trainer: After gaining considerable experience, you may opt to set up training institutes, take up lectureship or give educational speeches in seminars for students as well as investors. These days many CFPs opt to launch their own web-series wherein they educate people. This not only helps investors and students but also acts as a brand –building exercise for you if you want to set up your own services.

Columnists/ Writers: Seasoned CFPs who have earned a name for themselves and enjoy writing can choose to be a columnist with a financial newspaper or website or write a book on a niche subject. This is a simple yet very powerful way to showcase your expertise, help investors as well as earn a steady source of income.

Conclusion:

Apart from strong knowledge base and steady experience, as a CFP you need communication skills, people-centric approach, far-sightedness, creativity and as well as risk-taking abilities to excel in any role you assume as a financial planner. Managing people’s finances is a challenging work and requires a great deal of responsibility. India has a shortage of quality financial planners and there lies massive opportunity for you to be explored.