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What clients want from a financial professional 

The vast majority of respondents said working with a financial professional would help ensure they could financially support all the things they want to do in their life.

While most Americans find value in the guidance offered by financial professionals, what they want from that relationship varies by life stage.

In the 2022 Retirement Risk Readiness Study from Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America (Allianz Life), 86% of respondents said working with a financial professional would help ensure that they could financially support all the things they want to do in their life, which is, of course, one of the key goals when working with clients. Overall, more than four in 10 respondents (44%) said one of the most important things a financial professional can do to help them was make sure they have enough money to last their lifetime.

People who are already working with a financial professional feel better prepared for their financial future. A majority of these respondents said they find value in the assistance they get in addressing a number of potential retirement risks, including saving enough for retirement (74%), finding balance in budgeting (67%), planning for how to take retirement income (65%) and planning to address the rising cost of living (60%).

While people clearly value the benefits of working with a financial professional, their specific needs vary based on their life stage. People who are further from retirement have very different financial priorities than those who are already enjoying their golden years.

Here’s what different groups of Americans said they value most from a financial professional, based on how close to retirement they are.


Retirees see the most value in having a financial professional help them mitigate risks to their retirement savings and income:

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Maximize investment return

56% retirees

38% near-retirees

43% pre-retirees


Protect investments from market loss

45% retirees

39% near-retirees

32% pre-retirees


Minimize tax burden

43% retirees

36% near-retirees

31% pre-retirees


Near-retirees who are within 10 years from retirement value the assistance of a financial professional to make decisions about maximizing future benefits:


Maximizing Social Security benefit in retirement

34% near-retirees

27% pre-retirees

25% retirees


Making the best decisions about Medicare and health insurance

30% near-retirees

23% pre-retirees

22% retirees


Pre-retirees who are 10 or more years from retirement value how a financial professional can help them prepare today for a more successful tomorrow:


Securing their children’s financial future

35% pre-retirees

23% near-retirees

13% retirees


Balancing their budget to save for later but enjoy life now

33% pre-retirees

25% near-retirees

26% retirees

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Paying down debt

27% pre-retirees

19% near-retirees

16% retirees

In addition, pre-retirees want their financial professional to be tech savvy, offering interactive tools to understand finances under a variety of scenarios (58% vs 48% near-retirees and 37% retirees) and  flexible with meeting options, including virtual meetings (50% vs 43% near-retirees and 48% retirees.

In order to best serve their clients, financial professionals must recognize how client needs change through different life stages. Knowing what is likely on a client’s mind based on their proximity to retirement can lead to better discussions and more tailored solutions.

*The 2022 Retirement Risk Readiness Study was conducted by online survey in February 2022 with a nationally representative sample of 1,000 individuals age 25+ in the contiguous U.S. with an annual household income of $50k+ (single) / $75k+ (married/partnered) OR investable assets of $150k.

Guarantees are backed by the financial strength and claims-paying ability of Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America.

Products are issued by Allianz Life Insurance Company of North America.