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Director of Advisor Research

Employer
Kitces.com
Location
Working from home
Salary
Base salary $90,000 - $130,000/year based on experience
Closing date
May 7, 2024

View more

Job Role
Manager
Employment Type
Full Time
Level
Experienced
Experience Level
5 to 9 years
CFP® Certification
Preferred

Job Details

Director of Advisor Research 

The mission of Kitces.com is to help financial advicers be better and more successful, creating a 100X multiplier effect for our work and the number of consumers we can positively impact with the power of financial planning delivered by a Kitces-supported financial advicer to their clients. 

To achieve this mission, Kitces.com publishes the leading financial planning industry blog Nerd’s Eye View, producing award-winning commentary on financial planning strategies and practice management trends for financial advisors ranked as the most Influential, Objective, Relevant, and Useful content amongst any online media publication for financial advisors. Our Members Section provides additional white papers, webinars, training Courses to master essential skills, and the opportunity for financial planning professionals to earn Continuing Education credits, and we are invited to speak regularly at financial advisor conferences across the US and around the world to present our analysis and insights.  

Unlike traditional media sites, though, Kitces.com deliberately generates no revenue from advertising or sponsored content. Instead, we remain solely focused on creating value directly for our readers, strengthening the awareness of and integrity of the Kitces brand, and being compensated directly from our readers both on our site (for those who join our Members Section, hire us to speak and consult, or purchase Kitces Research), and through our co-owned financial services solutions for consumers (who may engage with our related financial advisory firms) as well as our business solutions for financial advisors themselves (for whom we have a number of businesses providing service and technology solutions for advisory firms). 

Kitces.com is hiring a Director of Advisor Research to be responsible for our Kitces Research program, with a primary focus on the production of our four core Research studies on Advicers (Productivity, Marketing, Technology, and Wellbeing, conducted at rotating 6-month intervals over a 2-year cycle), including execution of the  Research process itself (from design and data gathering to analysis and writing the Research report), working with our Platform team to collect data in our centralized Kitces Advicer Database, supporting the distribution of our Research including follow-on blog posts (and potential webinars or in-person presentations), and the creation of new enterprise research, consulting, and academic data licensing offerings to further monetize our research capabilities. 

So if you’re an experienced researcher who’s felt the frustration of developing research for academic journals that few people read and wants to see their research applied in practice with a real impact, who loves to dig into quantitative data to develop original insights and is excited to do novel research on the unique population of financial advicers, and have a passion for building systems and teams to ensure the research you’ve created will be able to sustain over time… then this job is for you! 

Description/Responsibilities 

This entirely virtually-based staff position (work from anywhere in the United States!) reports to the Managing Director Rachel Zeller, and will work directly with Chief Financial Planning Nerd and lead visionary Michael Kitces, serving as the Director of both our contract and full-time-employee Research team. 

  • Accountable for the end-to-end production of our four ongoing Research studies on Advicers (Productivity, Marketing, Technology, and Wellbeing) on a semi-annual basis (2x/year cycling over 2 years), including 
    • Study and questionnaire design 
    • Data gathering 
    • Data analysis 
    • Report writing 
  • Collaborate with Platform on the ongoing development of the Kitces Advicer Database (KAD) for centralization of and management of Research data 
  • Collaborate with Platform on the ongoing development of improved data collection techniques, including refinements to sampling methodology, improvements on the Kitces Research Portal, and establishing a more continuous incremental data gathering process through short on-site surveys  
  • Responsible for authoring at least 12 blog articles each year on Kitces Research studies, and providing support to additional authors who want to write for Nerd’s Eye View using Kitces data  
  • Accountable for ensuring that at least 2 academic Journal articles are published each year that rely on Kitces Research data 
  • Support the development of presentations and articles that rely on our Kitces Research data, including conducting relevant analyses of data and producing necessary charts/tables  
  • Lead, Manage, and hold Accountable the members of the Research team, such as weekly L10s (team meetings), 1:1s, quarterly check-ins, and annual performance reviews, with a particular focus on the training and development of team members as a part of our ‘Get Your Nerd On’ Core Value. Also responsible for the expansion of the Research team over time by mapping out (and eventually hiring and developing new team members in) future full-time and contractor seats. 
  • Accountable for determining, tracking, and reporting relevant data metrics regarding research participation, traffic to prior studies, the visibility of our research in the advisor marketplace, and ensuring our content meets our QNR (Quality, Nerdiness, Relevance) standards and other key business objectives 

Over time, interested candidates will also have the opportunity to share their Advicer expertise in online (webinar) and in-person (conference) speaking engagements, or in private consulting engagements, and be able to earn additional speaking/consulting fees. In addition, entrepreneurial candidates will have the opportunity to lead the future development of a paid enterprise offering of our research results.  

Key Candidate Traits 

The ideal candidate should be self-motivated enough to work in a virtual environment with limited supervision (autonomous), have an extremely strong inclination for continuous learning (self-development), an immaculate attention to detail (organized and efficient), a service mindset (seeks to collaborate and to help and support others), and an ability to work in a changing environment (adaptability).  

Candidates should be extremely comfortable diving deeply into large volumes of quantitative data and leveraging statistical analysis tools (e.g., Stata), have developed survey questionnaires/instruments, and be extremely proficient in writing at length about research results in a manner that is accessible to non-academics. 

In addition, candidates are expected to have experience managing a variety of projects, both new and ongoing, and have experience leading a team through the process of research studies from start to finish, meeting deadlines while maintaining quality. 

Candidates must be legally authorized and available to work primarily within the United States. Kitces.com does not sponsor visas at this time. 

Relevant graduate degree and successful execution in conducting and publishing research using quantitative data for at least five separate studies is required. Completion of a PhD, Financial Planning industry experience, and experience leading a team of researchers, are strongly preferred. 

Compensation/Benefits 

  • Base salary $90,000 - $130,000/year based on experience 
  • Available bonus up to 12% of base salary, determined by meeting key Members Section and other business metrics 
  • 50% of speaking or consulting fees earned while speaking/consulting on behalf of Kitces 
  • $3,000 budget for additional training/skills education 
  • $4,000 conference budget 
  • $1,000 budget for technology hardware/software or related office materials 
  • Paid membership in a relevant membership association and for a relevant professional designation or certification 
  • 20 days of paid time off for combined vacation + sick, plus 6 national holidays 
  • Participation in company health plan 
  • Participation in company 401(k) plan 
  • “No-meeting” Wednesdays 

What it’s like working at Kitces.com 

We are a team that lives by our values, our support of one another and our commitment to the community we serve. The successful candidate will share these Kitces Core Values: 

  • Do the Right Thing 
  • Advisors First 
  • Be the Trusted Source 
  • Deposit More Than We Withdraw 
  • No A$$holes 
  • Get Your Nerd On 

At Kitces.com we have all but eradicated internal email. All internal communication is done via Slack, or through Asana tasks.  

When on Slack calls, video is expected as we believe hearing voices and seeing faces makes for stronger communication and connections. We lean on technology tools to get things done and protect our time. An example is our use of the delayed-send on Slack messages. While anyone might have a great idea pop up at any time, we are careful to make sure messages are only sent during regular business hours to respect the work/home boundaries of our work-from-home (or work-from-anywhere) team.  

As a company we try to front load meetings to the beginning of the week so that the end of the week can be more focused on Deep Work to maximize our personal productivity. 

While, as a remote company, we tend to attract a lot of introverts, we also recognize the value in creating work relationships, so we have a social committee that creatively offers a multitude of ways for people to connect in the ways they feel most comfortable. 


To Apply: 
Interested candidates for the Director of Advisor Research should complete the initial application form. Questions can be directed to jobs@kitces.com

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