Become a CFP® Professional


Research Shows Benefits of CFP® Certification

Why do individuals choose to become CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ professionals?

Research by Aite Group shows that CFP® certification can be a key differentiator for firms and individual financial professionals looking to improve the quality of their advice and provide additional value to clients.

At a time when many Americans are reaching retirement age, the need for personal financial planning expertise is greater than ever. Recruiters and prospective employers recognize CFP® certification as the most desired designation in this growing field. Becoming a financial planner offers:

  • High income potential
  • Dynamic, respected profession
  • Satisfaction from helping people meet financial goals and plan for the future

What are the long-term benefits of CFP® Certification?

Your Path to CFP® Certification

Joseph McLaughlin, CFP®, Financial Advisor, First Command Financial Services, is interviewed about how important becoming a CFP® professional was to his financial advising career.

Key findings of the research – which was commissioned by Certified Financial Planner Board of Standards, Inc. – include:

  • 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.
Download the Aite Group Research Report (PDF, 978KB)

Exam Dates


CFP® Certification Examination

Nov. 15–19, 2016
(Registration Deadline: Nov. 1)

Most Recent Exam:
CFP® Certification Examination
July 26–30, 2016

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The 2013 Household Financial Planning Survey shows that those with a financial plan feel more confident and report more success managing money, savings & investments than those who have not.

Employment for personal financial advisors is projected to grow much faster than the average for all occupations through 2020. Bureau of Labor Statistics

In a March 2012 survey of American consumers, 60% indicated they would benefit from the counsel of a financial planner or advisor.

If you hold one of several degrees, licenses or credentials, you can take the CFP® Exam after completing a single capstone course.

Classroom or online learning? Full-time or part-time studies? There are CFP Board-Registered Programs designed to meet your needs. 

Achieve the certification that is rapidly becoming the industry standard: CFP® certification.

Professionals who have already earned their CFP® certification have enjoyed an average income increase of 30%.

Demand for personal financial advisors is expected to grow 41% by 2016, according to Money Magazine and

More clients who work with a CFP® professional are satisfied or very satisfied, compared those who work with an advisor without certification.

If you're up for the challenge of helping people achieve their financial goals, financial planning is the career for you.