Edward Jones Pass Program

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Apr 7, 2009 4:20 pm

I am a college senior and am interested in the Pass Program with Edward Jones.  Given my age (if I start after I graduate) and current economic climate, I believe the ability to have a goodknight would be a huge advantage for getting started.  I’ve seen some say you can acquire a business with assets of up to 20MM, while others say you won’t get anything out of it. Is there anyone that has been through the program or anyone who can give some input about the program?(past particpants, likes, dislikes…anything helps)

Apr 7, 2009 4:55 pm

Future FA - I’m not sure how others will take this, but if you are going into this because you want someone to hand you 20mil to work with - you’re trying to come into the wrong business.

Even with 20 mil, this business is difficult. In my old region, we looked at Pass program guys as people who couldn’t really make it in the field.

Go into expecting to work hard, and you’ll be fine.

The pass program is for sissies.

Apr 7, 2009 5:07 pm

But those PASS guys can give you some great ideas about how to “boost” revenues.

  I won't go into the gory details, but my jaw spent the majority of the evening on the floor during dinner one night at a due dilligence trip when I got stuck with a table full of PASSers.    It was disturbing to hear all the creative ways they'd learned to fly under compliance's radar while taking advantage of clients.  
Apr 7, 2009 6:18 pm

I get that completely. I wasn’t necessarily meaning that I’m expecting to get a 20MM book of business, but more trying to figure out the advantages of going the Pass Program route vs. traditional (is it worth it). Don’t get me wrong, I fully understand it will not be given to me no matter which route I take, but I’m def. not opposed to giving myself whatever advantage(s) I can when starting out in this business.

Apr 7, 2009 6:59 pm

Try to go straight to the field. The quicker you get there, the faster you’ll build your book

Apr 7, 2009 7:35 pm


If you don't mind telling a prospect you don't know something or you can buy some time (by BSing them a little maybe) until you can find out more information, then, you don't need the PASS Program.  You can get the same thing while growing your business. The thing with EJ, though, is (maybe elsewhere too) you are trained on various products and services after you need it. This is because the industry covers so much that you can't be an expert at everything. You go out building relationships by selling products easy to pitch. Then you find the products and services EJ offers that your prospects need. As you learn about the various products you choose to narrow them down a little and research particular products for one of the following reasons-commisions, services you can provide, products you agree with for whatever reason, and concentrate on that niche or market segment.   If you need to practice and to gain some extra knowledge and skills first then try the PASS Program.   The problem with the PASS Program is that this industry is not for everyone and you could very well be wasting your time if it's not for you. If you have one of the following.....   1) Can sell ice to an eskimo, 2) Already knowledgeable about the products and services EJ offers 3) Have plenty of time to put in the hours until you get 1 and 2   you should pass on the PASS program.                
Apr 7, 2009 7:51 pm

I agree with most of the posters, however, being that he is so young…the PASS program may be the way to go to get some knowledge under your belt.  I started in this business over 35 with grey temples…much easier to talk about someone’s finances without them thinking “why am I giving this info to this kid”. 

Apr 7, 2009 7:55 pm

Go to the field. Wake up early, get some knowledge while you are building your business. They will brainwash you in the PASS program anyway. You will only learn “the Jones way”.

Apr 7, 2009 8:53 pm

thanks for all the replies…out of curiosity, has anyone actually gone through the Pass Program? My initial feeling was that the additional training and “possible” goodknight/mentoring that comes along with the Pass would be a great way to start into the business at my still relatively young age. Since the Pass Program is only about a year long, I don’t think it would be a matter of getting behind or not being able to have a great start b/c of it (I have plenty of years to grow my business, although I agree, the sooner the better). FYI…I’ve interned with NMFN so I have experience with selling, but mostly dealt with life insurance and I am not familiar with Jones products. 

Apr 7, 2009 9:17 pm

From what I understand, the PASS program has been for a lot of younger, college-grad type advisors that couldn’t quite make it in the field yet. They tried and failed, so this program keeps them employed at Jones, gets them some more work and life experience, and hopefully better prepares them to be an FA again.

Although I think most PASS program FA’s are basically doomed (since they couldn’t make it once), I do think it’s a very positive program. It can also lead to jobs at the corporate office, which many of them are better suited for.

Apr 8, 2009 9:20 am

FF - you’re better off getting some sales experience first - then coming back to this industry in a few years.  Go sell copiers, books, cell phones, etc.  It’s better to cut your teeth in sales in a different industy first - especially one that will pay you a salary.  You will not make any money in this business for the first 3 - 5 years.

Apr 8, 2009 9:33 am

I disagree with the other posters.  I think the pass program is great for a kid just out of college.  This will give you 18-24 months to learn about the business and work on how you want your business to look.  It will also make you 2 years older and maybe a little more mature.  I was not in the pass program but I have seen several people go thru and end up successful out in the field.

Apr 8, 2009 3:37 pm

It would be great if one of you PASS program people that read these forums spoke up and let this new guy know exactly what he can expect if he goes through the program.  Also, tell Mike I said hi and that we need to play some golf this summer. 

I agree with henry in that the PASS program can be a great way to get started in this business if you are right out of college.  Think of it as an extended internship with a guaranteed job at the end if you can make it.  It is used as a way for Jones to take some FAs who haven't been successful in the field, give them some training in the home office, and then put them back out in the field.  They have a good success rate.  I'd venture to guess better than the attrition rate of the just plain new FAs that hit the field new from KYC and E/G.  By the time you're finished you'll know how Jones works, how the operational side of things work, and how to talk to clients on the phone, how to do a presentation, and probably how to build a portfolio.  You'll also take over an existing office of some kind.  It may not be the office of your dreams, but it will be a decent head start.    Also, you may find that you really don't want to be an FA.  It sucks to find that out 2 years into your career as an FA in the field.  It's not a huge ordeal if you find that out before you've left the home office of Jones.  Or you may decide you want to be a plumber instead.  At least in the PASS program you aren't blowing through your savings while trying to pay the rent.    It's a risk/reward conversation.  There's more risk in going immediately to the field, but the rewards are there if you put the hard work in.  If you don't want to take the risk immediately, the PASS program may be your best bet. 
Apr 8, 2009 3:47 pm

Fresh out of college, ability to get two years paid experience without all the risk.  The ability to watch for open offices and have first chance.  Sounds like a plan to me.

Apr 8, 2009 4:04 pm

Thanks for all the replies. I’m not sure if failed advisors get into the program or not, but I do know it takes additional interviewing rounds to get into the Pass Program vs. the traditional route. I think getting into the business at my age, an additional year of training and the ability to have a true mentor via a goodknight would be a significant advantage to someone starting in this business. Once again, thanks for your thoughts/replies.

Apr 8, 2009 5:17 pm

sometimes, "failed" advisors get a chance to run thru the pass program if the regional leader feels they have promise

Apr 8, 2009 5:27 pm

[quote=jkl1v1n6]Fresh out of college, ability to get two years paid experience without all the risk.  The ability to watch for open offices and have first chance.  Sounds like a plan to me.

   [/quote]   I'm with you on that. Also, the guys I met that went through the pass program weren't always "failures". Sometimes it is situational. Many of them had the ability all along. Everyone loves to rip someone else and use the word failure, but all situations are different.
Apr 9, 2009 9:18 am

It's not as if these guys get a list of the open offices every day and get to cherry pick the ones they want.  The program is designed for those guys to take over an office, but typically the really good ones will be given to a transfer broker or an FA already in the region.  So, they may get to choose, but they're not at the top of the pecking order.  And from what I understand they've got a window of opportunity in which to choose.  They don't get to hang around in home office for a year waiting for the exact office to come open.  It's a great program and if you can get in, I'd recommend it.