• Banks and Credit Unions Struggle to Grow Advisor Force

    Annual Checkup Reveals Softness in Growth EngineWhile financial institutions grew their revenue a robust 9% in 2018, this year’s Kehrer Bielan Annual Industry Checkup identified a troubling trend: banks and credit unions are losing ground in the uphill climb to recruit and retain the advisors needed to grow the business. Decades of research by the firm have confirmed that adding advisors is a key to growing revenue and increasing penetration of the institution’s customer opportu...  Read More...

  • Bank-Based Advisors Add More Advisory Assets

    Maintain Level of Asset Acquisition, Shift Away from Transaction BusinessIn last year’s benchmarking surveys, Kehrer Bielan found that the typical advisor in a bank or credit union added $7.4 million in new client assets, slightly more than the $7.3 million of asset accumulation the previous year. While the pace of asset accumulation is not accelerating, the composition of those new assets points to a stronger foundation for future growth.       Thirty-one percent of th...  Read More...

  • One Topic You Didn't Hear Enough About at BISA

    The 2019 BISA Annual Convention is in the books. To the many individuals that we were able to interact with over the course the conference and to all of you who attended our sessions and panels, thank you. We appreciate your interest in our work and the opportunity to share it with you.   Read More...

  • Your Clients Are More Valuable Than Ever Before

    Last week you read about how the talent crunch is influencing firm strategy at every level, from talent development to training to compensation. There is another trend that is having a similarly profound impact on our industry – the decline in branch traffic and referrals. Your clients are more valuable than ever before, because the cost of client acquisition has never been higher.   Read More...

  • The Talent Crunch Continues: How Are Firms Responding?

    Kehrer Bielan’s annual benchmarking surveys are in the field and from what we are hearing the competition for quality advisors remains intense.Some firms have responded to the crunch by developing an internal pipeline of talent to supplement their efforts to recruit externally. Interns, sales assistants, associate advisors, and licensed bankers can all be part of a bench team that the firm can draw from to fill vacancies, and sourcing a candidate internally takes less time and is less costly tha...  Read More...

  • Are Financial Institutions Improving Advisor Coverage

    Many financial institutions are trying to increase their advisor headcount to provide better coverage of the branch network and the opportunity in the institution’s client base. However, by the traditional measure of consumer deposits per advisor, they are just treading water. The 201 banks and credit unions covered by this year’s Kehrer Bielan benchmarking surveys had $265 million in consumer deposits per advisor, on average, slightly thinner advisor coverage than the previous year....  Read More...

  • Study Finds Banks and Credit Unions Filling Advisor Vacancies Quicker

    In a challenging recruiting environment, financial institutions are now able to find an advisor to fill a vacancy one month faster than three years ago. That was one of the key findings from a recent study – Where Will the Next Generation of Advisors Come From? – a complimentary study sponsored by Cetera Financial Institutions.This year the average number of weeks it took to find an advisor to replace one who left was 16.3 weeks, compared to 20.5 weeks 3 years ago. The shortenin...  Read More...

  • Advisor Attrition Down in Bank BDs, Up in Smaller Firms

    Kehrer Bielan research has demonstrated that unwanted advisor attrition costs a firm $2 million when the advisor leaves for another firm, yet financial institutions continue to churn advisors, losing advisors every year and replacing them, only to lose a similar number the following year. The net effect is barely any growth in advisor headcount, despite growing opportunity in the institution’s client base. Data from a new complimentary study by Kehrer Bielan indicates that the large banks ...  Read More...

  • Triage a Work in Progress

    Mystery Shopping Study Finds Spotty Results Implementing Segmentation StrategyFaced with questions about the profitability of small account relationships, how they distract advisors from capturing greater wallet share from affluent clients, and the compliance risk of neglecting the best interest of underserved clients, many financial institutions have developed segmentation strategies to determine who should call, click, or come in. The cornerstone of that strategy is to train the gatekeepers to...  Read More...

  • Advisors See Fewer Referrals As Branch Traffic Shrinks

    The typical advisor in a bank or credit union received 120 referrals from the staff in the branches in the advisor’s territory during 2017, down 30% from the previous year. Declining branch traffic and branch closings are choking off a source of strength for branch-based advisors. While advisors once expected the financial institution to deliver a few referrals a day, now they are receiving just 10 a month.A recent Wall Street Journal article highlighted the impact of reduced foot traffic ...  Read More...

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