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What Factors Influence Financial Consultant Fees?

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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 23 September 2016
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    Conjecture Corporation
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Setting financial consultant fees is a task that many professional consultants face. The goal is to arrive at a fee schedule that is in line with the services and expertise offered while also being within the means of the targeted client base. For this reason, setting financial consultant fees typically involves offering more than one type of schedule, based on the needs of the customer.

One of the first issues to address when setting financial consultant fees is whether to use a schedule that is task-driven or time-driven. In other words, the consultant may choose to assign a flat price for each service that is offered, regardless of whether that task takes two minutes or two days. A different approach is to establish an hourly, daily, weekly, or monthly fee that compensates for the time devoted to providing services to the client, regardless of the nature of those services. Depending on the type of financial consulting involved and the complexity of the customer’s needs, one approach may clearly be superior to the other.

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Financial consultant fees may also be presented in the form of bundled services that are provided for a flat fee per month. In this scenario, a client may be able to choose from several different bundles or packages that includes a limited range of consulting services for that monthly fee. Typically, this would involve a basic package including the most commonly requested services, a second package that includes all the basics plus a few extras, and maybe a third package that encompasses all the services of the other two while adding additional benefits. As the scope of the financial consulting broadens, the fee charged for the package also increases.

When it comes to designing the best financial consultant fees for a business setting, consultants must take into account the amount of time and effort that goes into each type of service offered to the customer. Services that require little time and effort can be priced at a lower and usually competitive fee, while services that are more time- and labor-intensive should be billed at a higher rate. Coming up with the ideal combination to attract customers will depend on the fees already charged by others in the local market, the level of expertise that the consultant brings to the table, and even the demand for those services among the potential pool of clients. Only by balancing all these factors into a solution that is workable for both the financial consultant and the client base can the fee schedule be as asset rather than a liability to growing the consultant’s business.

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