Professionals in certified financial planner jobs specialize in helping individuals and businesses with their short- and long-term savings and investing strategies. Some professionals in certified financial planner jobs simply offer advice on investing and managing money without reference to specific investment vehicles. Others may recommend savings and investment products that are designed to meet educational, retirement, or some other long-term financial goal like estate planning. The certified financial planner job is sometimes synonymous with financial advisor, financial consultant, or wealth manager.
The job description of the certified financial planner varies depending on the needs of the client as well as the planner's expertise. He or she generally researches a client's financial history and current assets, and may also meet with that client's accountant or attorney if necessary to discuss the client's financial status and goals. In certified financial planner jobs, the planner must interview clients, analyze the financial information, then design a profile that outlines the client's financial goals, current financial status, and additional information such as taxes, insurance, risk tolerance, and expenses. The financial planning professional uses the research to offer suggestions to clients for a stable, long-term financial plan. Certified financial planners must stay in contact with their clients to ensure success, as well as stay updated on current market trends, which in turn helps them maintain credibility in their careers.
Certified financial planner careers include financial advisors, also known as financial consultants, who also focus on investments, savings goals, and tax laws. Similar to certified financial planner jobs, those who work as financial advisors also research, analyze, and make suggestions to clients for investment options like stocks and bonds, buying a house, or planning for retirement. Some certified financial planners operate out of small or self-employed businesses, while financial advisors may work for large investment and brokerage companies, insurance firms, or banks. Certified financial planners and financial advisors typically attract clients through networking, referrals, or by conducting seminars.
Experts in the financial field tend to follow similar educational and career paths. Most people who enter certified financial planner jobs major in business administration, finance, accounting, economics, or mathematics. Classes in risk management, investing, taxes and tax law, and estate planning benefit financial planners to help them understand finance-related matters and offer sound investment advice. Some professionals enter certified financial planner jobs after gaining experience in relevant fields such as accounting, insurance sales, financial services, or auditing. Certified financial planner jobs often lead to other careers such as investment banker or financial analyst.