AXA Advisors Reviews | Glassdoor

AXA Advisors Reviews

Updated May 17, 2017
43 reviews

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2.0
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AXA Advisors Chairman and CEO Henri de Castries
Henri de Castries
5 Ratings

43 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • It is true that you can make a lot of money right out of the gates (in 18 reviews)

  • Ability to make A LOT of money (paid for what you do) (in 17 reviews)

Cons
  • This of course is after you have recruited your friends and family to the company (in 22 reviews)

  • No base salary until you make 15 applications and/or 3,000 PCs (production credits) (in 21 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Helpful (1)

    "Terrible company"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Advisor in Cleveland, OH
    Current Employee - Financial Advisor in Cleveland, OH
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at AXA Advisors full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Can make a decent amount of money.

    Cons

    Expenses are all on the employee, nothing is reimbursed
    Management is awful
    New hires are expected to pay to do their own job

    Advice to Management

    Train and support new hires more.


  2. Helpful (5)

    "Financial Advisor"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Advisor in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Financial Advisor in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at AXA Advisors full-time (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Plenty of opportunity to make money
    Great location in Midtown Manhattan
    Good leadership among upper management

    Cons

    As a first year financial advisor, I expected a little bit more guidance
    Cold calling all day every single day

  3. Helpful (10)

    "Read this for honesty. Not "entrepreneurial" -- it's just sales"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Professional in Los Angeles, CA
    Current Employee - Financial Professional in Los Angeles, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at AXA Advisors full-time

    Pros

    -Technically uncapped earning potential

    -Total scheduling freedom

    -For someone with little technical ability, no novel ideas, but a desire/ability to grind through repetitive, unstimulating tasks, it can be a lucrative career (it's just a numbers game at the end of the day, and you have to stick around long enough to throw lots of darts at the board)

    -If you have a warm market of family or ethnic connections, you can make decent money selling reasonably competitive products.

    -You can learn a lot about the insurance industry, and then leave to go apply it somewhere more technical.

    -You will get some access to a house book of orphaned accounts, which can be a decent way to get your income and referrals started in the beginning (but don't expect miracles).

    -AXA is one of few insurance companies to do international underwriting on foreign nationals. If you are lucky enough to have access to such people, you can make great money in that market. Chinese advisors are in especially high demand right now.

    -A good way to get pure sales experience, which you can take elsewhere (my recommendation would be tech sales)

    Cons

    Dont get AXA Equitable, which is the insurance company, confused with AXA Advisors, which is the wholly owned subsidiary you are working for (where all your problems stem from). Aside from the fact that your experience will partially depend on which branch you get hired in (some provide way more support than others, another fault), here is the truth about AXA and the industry:

    -The industry is contracting. Individual sales are less lucrative than they used to be, so now you are making up for it in volume

    -The general public has little faith in your profession or your industry

    -There are no legal definitions for terms like "financial advisor", so you are lumped in with fly-by-night insurance salesmen (in the public's eye, at least)

    -Technology is gradually automating more of the products you sell, making them cheaper to deliver to the customer directly. People can now buy property/casualty/liability/health/term insurance online. You can get mortgages online. What makes you think permanent life insurance is so sacred it can't be sold online, allowing companies to cut out their commissioned sales forces? AXA managers will assure you permanent life products and annuities are too complex and special to sell online, but at one time the same was said about brokerage accounts and managed money (now being threatened by ever evolving robo advisors).

    -The average middle class client will soon have little need for you; they will be able to get on demand advice online from a fee-based advisor anywhere, and that will rapidly devolve into a price war between thousands of registered "advisors" competing for the same piecemeal business. Do you want to wade into that arena? No. Which means:

    -You will eventually try to target a much smaller pool of wealthy, complex clients who have a legitimate need for a financial advisor, except they will be flooded by solicitation from agents just like you.

    As far as AXA Advisors goes:

    -Salary is worthless and untenable for someone who doesn't have a big cushion of savings or family support, especially if you have student loans / bills. (24k year one, 12k year two, that's it)

    -You will be actively discouraged from soliciting managed money business and from spending time learning in depth market trading concepts (the excuses will sound something like "It takes forever to make money doing that, why not sell insurance, which has bigger commissions?" Or "Just give me (your manager) the managed money and I'll put you in on an insurance or annuity case"). Would you trust an "advisor" who has such little understanding of trading that their excuse is "I don't pretend to know the market, I'm just here to help you manage your risk"? Because that's someone who only knows insurance.

    -Another refrain you will hear is that you are here to counsel people against their worst behaviors and impulses (like buying high and selling low). Are you looking to become a behavioral therapist or a technical professional?

    -AXA is an insurance company first and foremost. And when you are a hammer, every problem looks like a nail. Despite everything you hear about the "open architecture" you supposedly have available to you, an AXA product or service is somehow magically the final answer almost every time.

    Additionally:

    -All the products you sell are commoditized, so it is much more difficult to differentiate yourself from the other solid products out there. So now you are selling uphill / with one arm tied, since you can't rely on the strength or novelty of your products to pique people's interest into meeting with you.

    -You can't control or change the products you offer

    -You can't control the pricing or competitiveness of your products

    -You will encounter tooth and nail resistance if you leave and try to take your clients with you.

    Does any of that sound "entrepreneurial" to you? What entrepreneur in their right mind would enter into such an arrangement? At best you can be considered a franchisee--you are expected to adopt someone else's brand and products as your own, with no control. And no equity.

    If you are a true "entrepreneur", find a way to efficiently fund your living expenses while developing your idea. If you are a good salesperson, you could do well here, but you are better off finding a company with a more specialized / differentiated product that you will be able to leverage more clearly and effectively.

    Ask a long-time AXA producer (preferably in a producer group), who isn't a partner or in management, what the industry was really like "back then" and how much better it used to be. You will continually hear the party line from management about how much easier you have it because of the tools available to you, but the reality is that 20 or 30 years ago the general public was much more open to doing business with you and you would have been paid way more for doing it.

    If you are totally set on a career in financial services, and you are going in "cold" (i.e no connections in the industry or very warm, wealthy markets to sell to) do whatever you can to get into another company that has an actual hands-on advisor "track". They will groom you over a period of a few years to learn the business, support established advisors, learn techniques, get your CFP / other credentials, all while obtaining an actual livable salary (which allows you to focus on learning and frees you of low-end ethical dilemmas, like selling something to people who don't need it, or selling a higher commission product). Make sure the company you choose will allow you to learn insurance AND investing, and you will become a true, well rounded "advisor".

    Advice to Management

    The classic agency model is dead. Focus on hiring bright, qualified candidates that you can groom, instead of farming the churn and burn


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Great Company, but go somewhere else."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Advisor in Irvine, CA
    Current Employee - Financial Advisor in Irvine, CA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at AXA Advisors (More than 10 years)

    Pros

    16th Largest Co in the World

    Cons

    Commission only gig. Don't go to Broker Dealers or Insurance Companies. Go to a Bank or Credit Union. Less money at first but many other opportunities in the long run


  5. "Not so much..."

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Consultant in Woodbridge, NJ
    Current Employee - Financial Consultant in Woodbridge, NJ
    Recommends
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at AXA Advisors (More than a year)

    Pros

    Be your own boss. Attractive compensation opportunity and potential long term earnings. Strong financial standing and good product mix. Opportunity to help clients. Interesting personalities.

    Cons

    Technology is Byzantine. Some "independence". Lack of coordination inter office. Most managers have one hand in your pocket. The back office staff is atrocious. I cannot believe many of my co-workers passed their licensing and can offer advice. Compensation model particularly in light of potential regulatory changes. Revolving door culture. A somewhat lower tier name. Some limitations on offerings (i.e. what is a collar?).

    Advice to Management

    I charge a consulting fee if I were to go into too much detail here. I would say a competitive business will become increasingly challenging in the future.


  6. Helpful (3)

    "Financial advisors"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Deerfield, IL
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Deerfield, IL
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at AXA Advisors full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    You need to have a wide network, know a lot of people. Prospecting, social event, network event.
    You need to like meet with prospect. They coach you.

    Cons

    They don't care what you did, always ask what is next. You need to work lot of hours. You will pay extra bonus, but is work at commision. The don't advertisment at media, so people didn't know about company.


  7. Helpful (2)

    "Sales, is not financial advising"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Intern in New Rochelle, NY
    Current Employee - Intern in New Rochelle, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at AXA Advisors (Less than a year)

    Pros

    Could be a DECENT place to start a sales job

    Cons

    It's all about Prospecting. YOU HAVE TO PAY FOR YOUR LICENSES, the company does not sponsor you fully.
    Commission structure the only way you will make a living.

    Advice to Management

    Awful management, transparency is one thing, but it should never lead to humiliating or belittling

  8. Helpful (3)

    "Sale, Sale, Sale"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Financial Representative in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Financial Representative in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook

    I have been working at AXA Advisors (More than a year)

    Pros

    there are no pros, they don't help you get clients, the training is a joke, and they fire you if you don't hit quotas also they have a big turn over rate.

    Cons

    you must pay for you licenses and they only reimburse a 80% and managers are there to take advantage of you.


  9. Helpful (1)

    "Really depends on the team you are with"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Assistant in New York, NY
    Current Employee - Assistant in New York, NY
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook

    I have been working at AXA Advisors full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Flexibility
    Potential to make good money

    Cons

    AXA home office doesnt really care about the AXA Advisors branch, so the budget is not good for things like supplies, competent operational staff, etc.

    Advice to Management

    N/A


  10. Helpful (2)

    "Great training for new financial advisors but it is a very hard job"

    Star Star Star Star Star
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Regional Vice President in Pitt, MN
    Current Employee - Regional Vice President in Pitt, MN
    Doesn't Recommend
    Neutral Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I have been working at AXA Advisors full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Training is very good and ongoing

    Cons

    Need to provide more leads for new reps and pair them up with seasoned producers. Do not take this job unless you have 5-8 years where you can stomach 3-4 nights a week and 50-70 hours weeks. Your average the first few years could be 30-50k and you will need to have money in the bank to get thru tough months. If you make it this is one of the greatest jobs you can have - but only 10% make it.

    Advice to Management

    Be honest in the interview process.


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