Financial Advisor Associate Job Description
The Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Financial Advisor Associate (FAA) Program is a rigorous, demanding, and intense 36-month training and development program. At the end of the three-phase program, Financial Advisor Associates are fully prepared to take their place among our elite Financial Advisor workforce. However, even before you apply, you should have a frank discussion with yourself about your desire to pursue this career.
To succeed, you'll need the right combination of personal attributes:
Drive. As a Financial Advisor, you are responsible for yourself and your income level. It is a highly competitive business where self-drive is key. You will need to be organized, focused, and extremely disciplined.
Ambition. You need to really, really want to succeed. This is not a relaxed, punch-the-clock job. You'll work hard, struggle through slow periods, and face tough challenges while building your business. To be among those who succeed, you must be the kind of person who perseveres and enjoys overcoming challenges.
Accountability. There are no shortcuts to success in this business, and you'll need to be demanding of yourself. But there's something else – you are responsible for treating your clients properly, disclosing what they need to hear, and doing your absolute best to help them. Not only is this the right thing to do, it's essential to your own success.
Confidence. Can you make at least 100 cold calls a day? Do you believe in your abilities enough to withstand rejection, and challenges to your opinions? Do you genuinely like helping people, talking with them, engaging in conversation that may not result in immediate tangible benefit?
The FAA Program prepares you to become a Financial Advisor through intensive training. Our extensive curriculum provides you state-of-the-art financial tools, techniques and resources needed to create strategies and build a client base of high net worth individuals. When you launch your career as a Financial Advisor, you are prepared to apply your product knowledge and wealth management talents to deliver clients with individualized and comprehensive advice.
Becoming a Financial Advisor at Morgan Stanley will allow you to:
Help Clients Achieve Their Goals - You can help clients achieve their financial goals and help them make a difference in their lives.
Make a Difference While Accomplishing Work-Life Balance - As a Financial Advisor you may have the opportunity to control your work schedule and the flexibility to achieve work-life balance as you manage your own business.
Play Your Part – Listen to your clients and work with them to develop portfolios reflective of what’s most important to them.
Build a Personally and Financially Rewarding Career – You have the potential to grow your business, assist your clients with their financial and investment needs and meet your personal financial goals.
A Training Process Geared Towards Your Success
Our rigorous training and development program is designed to fully prepare our FAAs to enter our elite Financial Advisor workforce. The program is broken out into three phases:
FAAs are required to pass the Securities Industry Essential (SIE) Exam and obtain Series 7 and 66 licenses, begin consultation meetings with their designated coaches appointed to them at the commencement of the program, complete assigned curriculum, and attend National Performance Training Sessions.
FAAs learn about wealth management topics and client conversations, participate in weekly coaching meetings, prospect for clients and open new account relationships.
In this final stage, FAAs learn to manage and expand client relationships, gather referrals, target specific niche markets, complete the Financial Planning Specialist (FPS) program, and meet frequently with their Manager.
- Complete proprietary training in finance, wealth planning, investment strategies and products.
- Effectively source business prospects and employ client acquisition techniques.
- Consult with clients on wealth management strategies based on their financial and investment goals.
- Balance referral activities, customer follow-ups and administrative tasks.
- Comply with all regulatory requirements, including licensing and registrations.
- Meet pre-determined production goals as outlined in training program.
The best Financial Advisors are high achievers, astute listeners and skilled problem solvers who can offer specialized advice to help clients meet their wealth management needs.
- Bachelor’s degree in business, finance, sales, marketing or related field, or equivalent to five years’ professional experience in business development, management, sales, legal, accounting, education, military, finance or other business-related field.
- Exemplary communication, presentation, time-management and organizational skills.
- Talented at networking with businesses and personal communities.
- Ability to listen to client needs and provide financial solutions.
- Successful completion of background check and pre-employment assessments.
- To qualify, applicants must be legally authorized to work in the United States, without requiring, now or in the future, sponsorship for employment visa status
The Hiring Process Consists of 4 Phases:
Candidate completes employment application, submits resume and completes two online assessments.
Candidate's application and assessment results are reviewed by Talent Acquisition team. Talent Acquisition team sets up phone screen with candidate.
Face-to-face interviews are held with the local management team. Candidate then completes a business plan exercise, which is reviewed. Upon successful assessment of the business plan, another round of face-to-face interviews is held.
Local management performs final evaluation to determine if an offer will be extended. Employment is contingent on background check.
Financial Advisors at Morgan Stanley Wealth Management can potentially earn significant income early in their careers. Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Financial Advisor Associates do not work on a commissions-only basis but rather are provided a base salary and incentive opportunities for performing to the firm's high standards and rewarded for exceeding them.
The compensation structure of the FAA Program is designed to support FAAs throughout the initial development period, offering the opportunity to receive substantial compensation. Morgan Stanley Wealth Management expects the best of its FAAs, and high-achievers are compensated accordingly.
FAAs Are Eligible for the Following Types of Compensation:
- Salary commensurate to your experience
- Incentive Compensation (Monthly)
- Incentive Bonuses (Annual)
Notes: All compensation referenced herein is subject to applicable income tax and other wage withholdings.
How do I apply for a role as a Financial Advisor, and what is the process?
It is a rigorous process. There are a series of online assessments designed to gauge aptitude in areas critical to the success of a Financial Advisor. You'll be asked to develop a business plan, followed by a series of interviews with the Firm's Complex and Regional Management. We intentionally created a challenging process to enhance the likelihood of long-term success for each Financial Advisor.
What is the base salary?
Base salary for the FAA Program is based on several factors, including but not limited to relevant experience.
Will I be paid while I study for my Series 7 and Series 66?
Yes, you will be paid your salary while in the pre-production phase, which consists of studying for your exams and completing the required curriculum. You will also be eligible for overtime during the pre-production phase.
What locations in the U.S. can I work in as a Financial Advisor?
We have more than 500 branch locations in the U.S. and have training opportunities in most of these locations.
Can I work part-time?
The FAA Program is only offered as a full-time position.
How long is the FAA Program, and what sort of training will be provided?
The FAA Program is a three-year program. Comprehensive training includes: instructor led national training sessions conducted virtually; training led by the Associate Complex Manager conducted locally at the branch; regional coach-led training; and web-based training.
What type of advancement opportunities would be available to me as a Financial Advisor?
There are many opportunities once you have successfully completed the FAA Program and established yourself as a successful Financial Advisor. You may pursue management roles at the Branch, Complex, Regional, and Divisional levels, as well as other opportunities throughout the organization.
Will Morgan Stanley Wealth Management sponsor my international work visa?
Morgan Stanley Wealth Management requires that FAAs be authorized to work in the U.S. without restriction as to duration, and does not sponsor international work visas.
For Colorado Applicants Only:
Salary range for the position: $47,500 -60,000/Yr. The successful candidate may be eligible for an annual discretionary incentive compensation award [OR] The successful candidate may be eligible to participate in the relevant business unit’s incentive compensation plan, which also may include a discretionary bonus component. Morgan Stanley offers a full spectrum of benefits, including Medical, Prescription Drug, Dental, Vision, Health Savings Account, Dependent Day Care Savings Account, Life Insurance, Disability and Other Insurance Plans, Paid Time Off (including Sick Leave, Parental Leave and Vacation), Holidays, 401(k), and Short/Long Term Disability, in addition to other special perks reserved for our employees. Please visit mybenefits.morganstanley.com to learn more about our benefit offerings.
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