The pool of talent in the IFA sector is small, yet the demand from companies that are hiring continues to grow.
According to Scott Stevens director of recruitment and acquisitions at Quilter, there is a lot of demand for IFAs, but not many advisers are willing to move from between firms if the job offer is not attractive enough.
Mr Stevens lists seven factors that can make a hiring firm more attractive to an adviser.
The firm needs to offer paraplanning support, who can do administrative tasks and take some of the burden away from the Ifa.
Other advisers are looking for lead source generation; where a firm can provide a steady stream of warm leads or a book of business.
Advisers are also looking for firms with robust back office technology
A lot of positions offered are for self-employed roles, but most of the demand is from individuals looking for salaried positions
Mr Stevens says: “The more aggressive principals recognise that if they want to inject value into their firm, they need more salaried advisers.
“The clients will belong to the business, therefore the valuation is a lot higher. If you have a loose collection of self-employed people, those clients belong to the advisers who can up sticks and go, so what value do you have?”
Job candidates also want career and personal support, so that they feel they are being developed. This can be in the form of mentoring.
They are also looking at the working environment and how attractive it would be to work there.
Mr Stevens adds that as a result of the ageing profile of financial advisers, practice buyouts are also attractive options.
To find candidates, the vast majority of firms will be looking through referrals and meeting advisers at industry events, although the coronavirus crisis has put a stop to some of that for the time being.
While recruitment consultants are another option, for a small firm they can be expensive.
For example, they might charge anything from 15 per cent to 20 per cent of the agreed salary, as their fee; figures derived from Quilter's dealings with recruitment firms over the last year.
When you consider the average salary of an experienced financial adviser, according to figures provided by Quilter, this could be quite costly for smaller firms.
For experienced advisers, the average salary in Scotland is close to £59,500; in the North of England it is £58,600; in the Midlands it is £50,600, in London it is £66,500, while in the South it is close to £54,000.
“If you are not willing to offer that and you have not got all the other things I mentioned that would attract a candidate, it is really tough,” Mr Stevens adds.