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Financial Adviser

Kaiwhakatakoto Kaupapa Pūtea

Alternative titles for this job

Financial advisers give advice about financial planning, investing, insurance and other financial services.


Financial advisers usually earn

$80K-$130K per year

Senior financial advisers can earn

$100K-$150K per year

Source: PERSOLKELLY, 2023

Job opportunities

Chances of getting a job as a financial adviser are good due to high demand for their services.


Pay for financial advisers varies depending on qualifications, experience, the number of clients they have, and the type of work they do.

  • Financial advisers usually earn between $80,000 and $130,000 a year.
  • Senior financial advisers earn between $100,000 and $150,000.
  • Very experienced financial advisers may earn substantially more than this. 

Financial advisers usually earn commission on top of their salary.

Self-employed financial advisers' incomes may be entirely from commissions.

Source: research, 2023; and PERSOLKELLY, '2023- 2024 Salary Guide', 2023.

(This information is a guide only. Find out more about the sources of our pay information)

What you will do

Financial advisers may do some or all of the following:

  • identify clients' short, medium and long-term financial goals
  • prepare suitable financial or investment plans
  • encourage clients to keep to their plans
  • review clients' taxation, retirement planning and sources of income
  • review clients' estate planning and insurance needs
  • report on clients' investments every three to six months.

Skills and knowledge

Financial advisers need to have:

  • the ability to understand and interpret financial and investment markets
  • knowledge of financial planning, taxation, investments, mortgages and insurance
  • the ability to research market and financial information.

Working conditions

Financial advisers:

  • usually work regular business hours, but may work weekends or evenings to meet deadlines
  • work in offices, but may travel to visit clients.

What's the job really like?

Financial Adviser video

Elle Wuthrich talks about life as a financial adviser

Right now I'm just clearing my emails and just checking because I was
following up on something with, uh, an underwriter.
That means nothing to a whole bunch of people. Right? .
Hi, I'm Elle Wuthrich and I'm a financial adviser. In my field,
I look after insurance like life and health, so that's life insurance,
trauma, income protection,
medical insurance. There are different types of advisers out there, so,
and people get really confused about financial advisers.
So you can have a financial adviser like me who does the life and health stuff.
Then you've got the mortgage adviser, also known as a mortgage broker,
and then you have the investment adviser.
Now they can give advice around Kiwi Saver, but also
where people can put their money with regards to funds. My favourite thing
to do in my line of work is meeting people.
I will travel all around Auckland to meet clients. You know what?
I haven't even ridden a scooter. Is that sad?
It is yeah . You need to have your Level 5 New Zealand Certificate in
Financial Services.
It took me about 3 months to do my Level Five Certificate,
but in saying that, you learn a lot more actually on the job. But yes,
you do need that piece of paper. The most rewarding part of my work is actually
at claim time. So when someone had been diagnosed with a condition,
it really makes me happy that I can get that money to them so that they can
focus on getting better instead of worrying about paying the bills.
If you're thinking about getting into this career, my biggest
bit of advice would be to find an adviser that you like
and have as a mentor because you'll learn so much from them.

Entry requirements

To become a financial adviser you need to have:

  • a New Zealand Certificate in Financial Services (Level 5), with a strand in one of the following: Investment; Life, Disability, and Health Insurance; General Insurance; Residential Property Lending
  • a Financial Advice Provider (FAP) licence or be engaged to operate under a Financial Advice Provider's licence as a financial adviser or a nominated representative.

Secondary education

NCEA Level 3 is required to enter tertiary training. Useful subjects include English, business studies, maths, economics and accounting.

Personal requirements

Financial advisers need to be:

  • honest and trustworthy
  • able to keep information confidential
  • able to use good judgement
  • good at communicating and listening
  • skilled at planning
  • good at sales
  • strong problem solvers.

Useful experience

Useful experience for financial advisers includes:

  • banking or customer service
  • accounting or auditing
  • management.


All financial advisers must be registered on the Financial Service Providers Register.

Find out more about training

Financial Advice New Zealand
0800 432 101 - -
09 414 1300 - -
Check out related courses

What are the chances of getting a job?

Range of factors contribute to strong demand for financial advisers

Demand for financial advisers is expected to continue rising as:

  • highly skilled advisers are in shortage, particularly in Christchurch and Wellington
  • an increasing number of workers close to retirement are seeking investment advice
  • a large number of financial advisers are likely to retire in the next 10 to 15 years.

Demand best for skilled financial advisers

Chances of getting work as a financial adviser are best for those who have:

  • customer service skills
  • market analysis skills
  • knowledge of legal compliance and risk management
  • accounting skills.

Most financial advisers self-employed

Financial advisers may work for:

  • banks
  • mortgage firms
  • insurance companies
  • financial investment firms.

Many financial advisers are self-employed.


  • Beale, J, general manager wealth, ASB, interview, July 2018.
  • Financial Markets Authority, 'QFE Insurance Providers' Replacement Business Practices', July 2018, (
  • Good Returns, 'Compliance Skills in Demand', 2 February 2016, (
  • Ministry of Business, Innovation and Employment, 'Occupational Outlook – Financial Advisers', August 2018, (
  • Pomfrett, O, head of people and performance, Craigs Investment Partners, interview, July 2018.
  • Stock, R, 'Financial Advisers Cluster Around Wealth, Financial Markets Authority Census Shows,' 27 March 2017, (

(This information is a guide only. Find out more about the sources of our job opportunities information)

Progression and specialisations

Financial advisers may progress to set up their own financial planning businesses, or move into management roles.

Financial advisers may specialise in:

  • insurance
  • investments
  • risk management
  • sharebroking
  • underwriting
  • mortgages.


A woman in a business suit holds a folder looking at a couple who are smiling and looking at a piece of paper in an office

Financial advisers advise clients on finances and related issues

Last updated 13 November 2023