Planning Profession

Traditional Financial Advisor Training Programs

Industry experts recommend getting with a firm committed to offering comprehensive financial planning and in positions where you don’t have to go out and immediately attract clients. However, expanding your search to include these traditional, broker-dealer firms will, of course, increase the odds of getting your start in the industry. These firms have historically been more transactions-based, rather than providing ongoing, comprehensive financial planning services.

Links to a few of these programs with program details and FAQ pages:

Merrill Lynch

“Our Our Financial Advisor Development Program (FADP) is designed to develop the critical skills and knowledge necessary for building a successful wealth management business—acquiring clients, enhancing relationships, providing tailored strategies and more. The 43-month program consists of five stages.”

Morgan Stanley

“The Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Financial Advisor Associate (FAA) Program is a rigorous, demanding, and intense 36-month training and development program. At the end of the three-phase program, Financial Advisor Associates are fully prepared to take their place among our elite financial advisor workforce. The FAA Program is highly selective, and we accept only the top candidates. However, even before you apply, you should have a frank discussion with yourself about your desire to pursue this career.”


“The Wealth Planning Associate (WPA) Program is a structured 24-month development program designed to provide you with the knowledge and skills necessary to succeed as a Financial Advisor at UBS. During each phase of the program, you will learn from wealth planning experts, work with some of the top Financial Advisors in the industry and develop the skills necessary to become a successful wealth manager. In addition to rigorous proprietary training, you will also pursue and obtain the Accredited Wealth Management Advisor (AWMA®) and the CFP® designations during the program.”

Wells Fargo Advisors

“There are many ways to become a Financial Advisor at Wells Fargo Advisors. While one of them might fit your working style or client interaction preference better, they will all provide you with the training needed to help your clients succeed financially and grow your business. Each of our training programs are designed to give potential Financial Advisors the tools they need to succeed — coaching and mentoring, hands-on learning opportunities and comprehensive training courses.”

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