NASHVILLE, March 16 – Rapid marketplace and demographic shifts are having profound effects on insurance and financial advisors and will significantly reshape the industry by 2020, according to a new book, Advisor 2020: The Forces and Opportunities Shaping the Financial Services Advisor of the Future.
The book, published by the GAMA Foundation and sponsored by the National Association of Insurance and Financial Advisors, was released at the LAMP meeting in Nashville. It presents the results of two independent research studies, “The Market of the Future” and “The Advisor of the Future,” and offers a framework advisors can use to capitalize on changing market forces and meet expanding client needs.
“Advisor 2020 identifies likely future scenarios so advisors can anticipate and even influence the financial forces of the future,” NAIFA President John Nichols said. “The futures research conducted for these studies will enable NAIFA members to make informed decisions about their practices, especially as they continue to serve the middle market and meet the changing needs of consumers. Every advisor needs to read and use the content and tools provided in this book so they build their practice and plan for a successful business future.”
The studies’ key findings include:
- The demand for insurance and financial advisors will outpace the average growth of the U.S. workforce by 2020. However, the pool of candidates for these jobs will begin to shrink as the numbers of college graduates and early career changers decline.
- Stiff competition for affluent clients will push more advisors into serving the middle market, which is currently underserved.
- The growth of employment by small businesses will increase the pool of individuals and families needing insurance and financial products not offered at their workplaces.
- Clients will demand a broad range of financial and non-financial services and products from advisors, including lifestyle management, wellness counseling and financial literacy education.
- To succeed in this environment, some advisors will concentrate on small, niche products and services or market segments. Most, however, will work collaboratively with other professionals and paraprofessionals forming groups that can meet all their clients’ growing advisory needs.
NAIFA is developing programs to prepare its members for the changes and opportunities described in Advisor 2020.
A four-hour Advisor 2020 workshop, a collaboration between NAIFA and the GAMA Foundation, will debut September 6 at the NAIFA 2014 Career Conference and Annual Meeting in San Diego. The workshop will help NAIFA members understand the book’s findings and explore ways to incorporate them into their practices.
NAIFA state and local associations will then be able to present the workshop to members in their hometowns around the country.
A series of NAIFA informational and training webinars will drill down on specific opportunities revealed in the book, such as “Selling to the Middle Market.” NAIFA will also provide its local and state associations with video programs based on the book’s research findings and advice.
“NAIFA has an illustrious history of nearly 125 years, but we have always been a strong, forward-looking organization,” said NAIFA President Nichols. “We are proud to have sponsored this cutting-edge research, and are dedicated to giving our members the support and resources they need to continue serving the changing needs of clients and to thrive through 2020 and beyond.”
About NAIFA: Founded in 1890 as The National Association of Life Underwriters (NALU), NAIFA is one of the nation’s oldest and largest associations representing the interests of insurance professionals from every Congressional district in the United States. NAIFA members assist consumers by focusing their practices on one or more of the following: life insurance and annuities, health insurance and employee benefits, multiline, and financial advising and investments. NAIFA’s mission is to advocate for a positive legislative and regulatory environment, enhance business and professional skills, and promote the ethical conduct of its members.