An investment consultant assists clients set up and implement investment strategies and build and maintain their individual portfolios. Like other financial advisers, investment consultants also actively monitor their client’s assets and work closely with them to adjust their portfolios as their financial goals change over time. They also help with the management of their client’s assets and ensure that they are properly funded to protect against unexpected losses. This article looks at the different roles performed by investment consultants throughout various sectors of the financial services industry.
Probably the most well known role for an Investment Consultant is in the asset management section of the firm. There are many companies that rely heavily on the expertise of asset management consultants to aid in the management of their portfolio holdings. Examples include private equity firms, which often hire asset management consultants to run their fund holdings on a day-to-day basis, or venture capitalists that rely heavily on outside help in identifying and managing the best short, long and growth investments. Investment consultants are also commonly hired by insurance companies and mortgage companies to help with underwriting loans and servicing properties. In some cases, financial advisers are also hired to work on investment policy. Whatever the function, there are a number of areas that are typically addressed by an Investment Consultant at the organizational level.
At the personal level, an Investment Consultant is often found working with clients to determine how to increase their current savings rate or obtain a more conservative investment portfolio. They are also often called upon to provide budgeting advice to clients, as well as assisting them with the creation of a retirement plan. Investment Consultants are also often found working at the client’s business level, helping with investments in mergers and acquisitions and restructuring their businesses to take advantage of market changes. For some consultancies, they are even called upon to make recommendations to directors or senior managers of a company on specific investments in their business, such as a spin-off of the firm.
Investment Consultants also play an important role in asset management. This includes assisting in the identification, selection and monitoring of an appropriate asset management strategy. In addition, the analysis and evaluation of a company’s asset management policies and procedures are also a responsibility of an Investment Consultant. This work often includes serving as a primary intermediary between the business and professional asset management advisors and providing advice to management about when and how to implement those policies.
Finally, investment consultants are often found working at the corporate level. These professionals play an important role not only in making strategic decisions for the company, but also in assisting corporate clients with implementing those decisions. Some consultancies have found this role to be valuable to their clients as it allows them to gain a better understanding of corporate spending and motivate executives to reevaluate spending practices. Corporate clients also find that investment consultants are useful because they can use their vast experience in financial planning to help their own personal clients address specific needs.
Overall, an Investment Consultants career is very diverse. While many begin their careers working at the corporate level, some find their way into private practice while still holding a college degree. Other consultants may start out working in the investment consultants’ department of a large bank or other major bank. Regardless of where you work, your career options are wide open.