New Research: CFP® Certification's Positive Impact On Advisors, Financial Firms & Clients

CFP Board Commissions Quantitative Research on CFP® Professionals' Success and Productivity

Feb 11, 2016, 09:00 ET from Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc.

WASHINGTON, Feb. 11, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- An independent study conducted by the Aite Group shows that there are significant benefits of becoming a CFP® professional, with the research indicating that the certification has great value to clients, financial advisory firms and advisors seeking to become certified.

Commissioned by Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc., the new independent research titled, "Building a Wealth Management Practice: Measuring CFP® Professionals' Contribution" provides an in-depth look at the differences between financial advisors who hold the CFP® certification and financial advisors who do not.

The study also compares financial planning firms that employ CFP® professionals to those that do not across several measures, including revenue, adoption of investment management and planning, and share of clients who are high-net-worth and ultra-high-net-worth. This year's study follows a version of the survey previously conducted in 2012, also by Aite Group.

Among the key findings of the survey:

  • CFP® professionals earn 26 percent more in compensation than other financial advisors, adjusted for years of experience;
  • 70 percent of CFP® professionals surveyed believe the CFP® certification has had a positive impact on client trust, confidence with clients and technical expertise;
  • Practices with CFP® professionals generate 40 percent more revenue and are generally more productive than other firms; and
  • Practices with CFP® professionals attract 53 percent more ultra-high net worth and high-net-worth clients than companies without CFP® professionals.

"This research provides further evidence that CFP® certification is the highest standard in financial advice that advisors, firms and investing consumers seek," said CFP Board Chief Executive Officer Kevin Keller, CAE. "CFP® certification, as this study shows, provides firms and advisors significant value that ultimately benefits those they serve."

Aite Group conducted an online survey of 403 U.S. financial advisors, 146 of which were CFP® professionals, in October 2015. The sample includes 306 advisors representing CFP practices. Given the number of advisors participating in this research, the data discussed in this report about CFP® professionals has an 8-point margin of error at the 95 percent confidence level. Tests of significance were conducted at the 95 percent confidence level except where noted.


The mission of Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. is to benefit the public by granting the CFP® certification and upholding it as the recognized standard of excellence for competent and ethical personal financial planning. The Board of Directors, in furthering CFP Board's mission, acts on behalf of the public, CFP® professionals and other stakeholders. CFP Board owns the certification marks CFP®, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™, CFP® (with plaque design) and CFP® (with flame design) in the U.S., which it awards to individuals who successfully complete CFP Board's initial and ongoing certification requirements.  CFP Board currently authorizes nearly 74,000 individuals to use these marks in the U.S.

SOURCE Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc.