BOSTON – The recruiting wars are far from over.

Recruiting for quality advisors “is as competitive as I’ve seen it in the last 10 years and I don’t see that changing,” says LPL managing director and president of independent advisor services Bill Morrissey.

Industry turnover is around 5% or less, Morrissey noted in an interview with Financial Planning – less than half what it was before the financial crisis. Moreover, one in four advisors is due to retire in the next 10 years.

So with the ranks of advisors declining and decreasingly looking to make a move, firms are scrambling to scoop up the best they can find because recruiting is still "a core growth driver," he points out.

In addition to a low supply of job-seekers, there is growing demand for their services. Baby boomers will need more financial advice, and as Gen Xers grow nearer to retirement and millennials accumulate more wealth, advisors will be well positioned to greatly expand their businesses.

Indeed, those advisors who are looking for a new home have a great opportunity these days, according to Morrissey. And while competition is fierce, he argues that LPL has some formidable weapons in its arsenal.

"We're the only firm that's recruiting across all channels: independents, wirehouses, insurance companies and banks and other financial institutions," he says. "Because there's a flight to quality, advisors are looking for financial stability with a long-term partner like LPL. We're able to offer a broad suite of tools and support and our announcement of a robo offering and price cuts can help advisors scale their business and serve new segments. That's a big help."


Speaking at LPL's Focus conference here, the three-generation Bostonian observed how the industry has changed in the 11 years since his first Focus.

"My first Focus was in San Diego in 2004. Have things changed?" he asked the audience. "Our business has changed a lot over the last decade, but the reason we're here has not."

Morrissey said a summertime job cleaning beaches on Cape Cod taught him the importance of time management, a lesson he carries with him today. He said that providing advisors with more time through the company's new service model, expanded relationship management unit, new technology and robo advisor will help advisors manage their time more effectively.

"Many of you will use that time to grow your practice. For those of you who don't retire, it's a wonderful opportunity to build your practice by building a more diverse client base, by working with millennials and women investors," Morrissey said. "There's never been a better time to help your clients, to grow your business and to give back to your community."

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