CFP Board lays out top priorities

The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards wants industry professionals involved as it tries to tackle its key problems

The Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. has announced it is launching a new center, which should encourage development, diversity and research in the industry.

With TD Ameritrade Institutional as a Lead Founding Sponsor, the center has been developed with the idea that it will help the CFP Board achieve its mission to benefit the public. It will particularly focus on fostering a more diverse and sustainable financial planner workforce and establishing an academic center of knowledge for the profession. To do this it wants advisors and planners involved sharing their ideas at a ‘design summit’ early next year but also by becoming shareholders.
"CFP Board sits at the crossroads of the financial planning profession. And CFP Board's Center for Financial Planning will serve as the catalyst, unifying response to the major challenges facing the financial planning profession," said Kevin R. Keller, CFP Board's Chief Executive Officer.
The center is looking to develop three key initiatives.
The first aim of the center is to try and diversity the demographic of current advisors and planners in the US. The hope is that eventually the population of advisors will better reflect the multicultural status of American society. This means introducing more people of Hispanic and Afro-American origins as well as women. As it currently stands, only 23% of the advisor population in the US are women.

Age is also an issue the center aims to tackle by looking to develop the next generation of financial planning professionals. This is an important issue as the industry continues to age and shrink.

Reg Jackson, vice president and a senior investment advisor at JDRM Wealth Management, said: “The advisor channel is getting older with the average age of advisors creeping higher over the past number of years.  We fully expect this trend to continue as the industry continues in the struggle to attract younger people.”
The third focus of the centre is to encourage more academic research into financial planning trends and behviors. A new academic journal will be a part of this producing industry-related articles written by academic from all related disciplines.
TD has made a five year multimillion-dollar commitment to the center but it is also thought that the CFP Board Center for Financial Planning will bring a variety of stakeholders made up of industry professionals, academic institutions as well as key organisations to the table too.
"We invite all who share in our vision for the profession to join us with financial and thought leader contributions to create a diverse, highly qualified pipeline of future financial planners to serve the public," said Richard P. Rojeck, CFP and chairman of CFP Board's Board of Directors.
It is thought that the center will also have an advisory council.