Wealth management firms that want to attract more female advisors to their workforce should focus on creating a favorable work/life balance for employees—something the majority of women advisors consider when recommending their firm to others.
An overwhelming 90 percent of women advisors with good work/life balance said they would “definitely recommend” their firm to others, compared to 68 percent who didn’t have good balance, according to J.D. Power’s 2018 U.S. Financial Advisor Satisfaction Study, an annual survey of more 3,200 of both employee and independent advisors with tenures of approximately 20 years.
Less than half of the women said they believe mentoring programs at their firms were effective (44 percent), although the share of men with faith in their firms’ mentoring programs wasn’t much better (53 percent).
“Firms that want to be leaders in attracting and retaining top female talent need to differentiate on recognizing and addressing those areas that women’s perceptions and priorities may differ from men’s.” Mike Foy, senior director of the Wealth Management Practice at J.D. Power, said in a statement on the survey results.
However, women were overall more satisfied than men in their career and satisfaction across all participants was up slightly from 2017, with employee advisors scoring an average of 726 and independent advisors 753 on a 1,000 scale.
The annual survey also ranks employee and independent firms based on advisor satisfaction measured by compensation, firm leadership, problem resolution, professional development and support for clients, operations and technology.
In 2018, Edward Jones was the best-rated employee advisory firm (909) and Commonwealth Financial was the best-rated independent firm by its advisors (955). Both were also the best-rates firms in their respective categories in 2017.
Like in 2017, some of the largest brokerages and networks of independent advisors scored near the category average in 2018.