Schwab Advisor Services

Building diversity

RIA firms are recognizing the need to diversify their talent portfolio to address changing client demographics.1 Creating a culture of inclusivity at your firm will help support your hiring and retention strategies.

One of the roadblocks to meeting the needs of the evolving investor is the shortage of diverse perspectives at RIA firms. For example, women are underrepresented in the financial services field, particularly when it comes to leadership positions; they comprise just 30% of all financial advisors and only 18% of executive officers.2,3 Only half of RIA firms have women in client-facing positions.4

And, most RIA firms today have a significant lack of racial and ethnic diversity with only 3% of staff being African American, 2% Asian, and 2% Hispanic.5 Investors are looking for more from their advisory firms.

Building a firm where diverse talent is represented and well integrated throughout all levels of the organization starts with taking an honest look at the working environment at your firm. Make a commitment to create an inclusive culture that empowers everyone to reach their full potential.

Gender diversity

Presentation: Why tomorrow's top RIA firms pursue gender diversity today

RIA firm leaders can start building firm diversity by increasing the number of women employed at their firm—who can bring gender, generational, racial, and cultural diversity along with different and fresh perspectives. 

You can access two versions of this presentation to help industry associates and leaders understand the value of expanding the number of women at their firms. It shares compelling statistics, talking points, and recommendations with the goal of starting the gender diversity discussion and brainstorming actions the firm might consider taking to increase the number of women in advisor and leadership roles.

The following are additional resources covering the benefits of gender diversity:

Research: Action steps to accelerate the advancement of women in the advice industry
Research and insights derived from female and male advisors attending two Think Tanks hosted by InvestmentNews at the Women to Watch and at Schwab's IMPACT 2017 conferences. 

White Paper: Capturing the opportunity in a changing environment
Discusses the shifting investor demographic and the importance of increasing gender, generational, and racial firm diversity to better serve the needs of today's investors.

Infographic Part 1: The female perspective
Depicts the value of attracting and retaining female clients and the changes firms may need to address in order to best serve these affluent and influential clients.

Infographic Part 2: How female talent can improve firm performance
Explains the business case for gender diversity at RIA firms.

Racial and ethnic diversity

It's becoming increasingly important for firms to develop teams that offer a range of perspectives, experiences, and backgrounds that reflect those of an evolving client population. Below are resources to help you work toward building racial and ethnic diversity at your firm.

Infographic: The opportunity in diversity
Showcases statistics and insights to illustrate the opportunity and business case for working toward racial and ethnic diversity to grow your firm.

Research: CFP Board Center for Financial Planning on racial and ethnic diversity
Sheds light on the lack of racial and ethnic diversity in the financial planning profession. It also examines the attitudes and perceptions of those with a stake in the racial and ethnic composition of this profession to provide insights on the challenges people of color face when entering the profession and to create opportunities for prospective CFP® professionals and the firms that employ them. Sponsored by Schwab Advisor Services through the Charles Schwab Foundation.

Full report
Executive brief

Video interview: Discussing diversity
Schwab's Leslie Tabor and InvestmentNews' Matt Ackermann discuss inclusion and diversity in the RIA industry.

Recruitment Playbook

Our RIA Talent Advantage® Recruitment Playbook offers more tips, tools, and resources on building an inclusive culture at your firm.