Katie McDonald, Dawn Thomas and Trish Gregory

The need for more female financial planners is palpable in Australia. As Giles Wade director Katie McDonald says, the greatest wealth transfer is unfolding before our eyes, representing a huge opportunity for female advisers.

“Education is needed to show women this is a very rewarding career,” McDonald says.

“Women have the perfect qualities to become financial planner as, every day you are helping families. There are a lot of amazing client managers and business development managers who would be fantastic financial planners, and we need to unlock their potential.”

As the employer gender pay gaps are published by the Workplace Gender Equality Agency for the first time, the gap is also top of mind for many women.

Trish Gregory, financial adviser at Fox & Hare, says the financial advice profession is at a pivotal point for men. Yes, men. Dominating the majority of the profession in terms of numbers, it will be up to men to support women and minorities to enter and progress their careers in financial advice.

“How do we decisively pull apart the systemic unconscious biases which prevent women and minorities from rising through the ranks to be advisers as quickly as men, from achieving leadership roles and from achieving true gender equity,” Gregory says.

She adds there is an opportunity to use that data to focus efforts towards going from a 20-30 per cent gender pay gap to zero, noting her previous employer had a gap of 30.1 per cent.

“But with only 18 per cent employers having a pay transparency policy, we have a long way to go,” Gregory says.

“The change would benefit employers, employees and the broader Australian community.”

The Wealth Designer senior financial adviser Dawn Thomas adds that there’s a critical need to address the challenges faced by women of all life stages and roles within the profession.