A Schwab Advisor Services RIA talent study examined the characteristics of the profession and the paths the advisors had taken. The 571 advisors surveyed shared four different views on the RIA industry: becoming an RIA, being an RIA, career management and recruiting.
Ninety-three percent said that an important benefit was improving the financial well-being of their clients, according to a statement.
“The RIA business is highly relationship-oriented with a strong focus on doing the right thing for clients,” Neesha Hathi, Schwab Advisor Services senior vice president, said in a statement. “Our study results indicate that independent advisors indeed value the attributes that have become the industry’s hallmarks. It’s also encouraging to see younger advisors being drawn to the profession for many of the same reasons as well as by the tremendous growth opportunities present in the RIA industry.”
Becoming an RIA
Thirty-two percent of advisors surveyed said they heard about this career from a friend or colleague – 43% identified that it was their second career and 21% said it was their third. This demonstrates the diversity among advisors – the previous career paths offer different experiences.
More than 50% of the advisors said they looked at other investment-related firms such as wirehouses and brokerage firms before they choose their current RIA firm – this is precisely what 35% of advisors under 40 did. Twenty-six percent of advisors ages 40- 50 and 11% over 60 also did so.
Both men and women – 55% and 48% respectively – held positions at other financial services firms. However, women were more likely to work at another RIA firm, and they often held previous positions in operations or administration. Men on the other hand, mainly worked in sales and trading.
Being an RIA