One option is to take the Securities Industry Essentials (SIE) exam which will be available in 2018. The Essentials exam would be a pre-requisite for the Series 7 exam and would require no sponsorship or employment by a FINRA member firm. Upon successful completion of the Essentials exam, you will have more of an edge in securing employment with a member firm as employers will be more likely to hire you and sponsor your Series 7 exam.

Another option is to get hired by an insurance company first. It is much harder to recruit insurance sales reps, and these companies are often more than willing to sponsor you for your Series 6, which is what you need to sell such mainstays as mutual funds and variable annuities. Of course, there is a lot of overlap between the Series 6 and 7 exams and, once you have taken the Series 6 and sold your share of retirement vehicles, it might be a simple matter to sidle into a job that requires you to take the Series 7.

Don't Give Up Even if you cannot find a firm to sponsor you now, things will probably change if you keep checking back. Ultimately, finding sponsorship will depend on two main factors: your persistence and the job market. A supervisor who tells you, "Sorry, but we don't hire anyone who doesn't already have a Series 7," could be speaking at a lecture hall at the nearby community college six months later, begging people to take a job from him. You may just need to wait out the market. Rest assured; whatever hassles you run into at this stage of the game should ultimately be worth it. According to Registered Rep magazine, you should expect to be in the business for five years before you make a six-digit income. Presumably, that is because your first job as a Series 7 registered representative will probably not be as a sales representative, but as a sales assistant - a job that typically pays around $40,000 per year.

Getting Your Foot In The Door

Related Articles
  1. Financial Advisor

    Introduction To The Series 65 Exam

    The Series 65 is required in many states in order to be a fee-based advisor. Find out what it is and whether you need it.
  2. Personal Finance

    The Series 79 Exam: What It Is And When You Need It

    If you're getting into the field of investment banking, you'll need to know all about the Series 79.
  3. Financial Advisor

    Series 7 Exam Prep: Options

    One of the most challenging topics in the series 7 exam is options. Find out what you need to know before you take the test.
  4. Financial Advisor

    Series 65 Exam Prep: The Investment Advisor

    Before you take the series 65, you need to understand who is an investment advisor as defined by the exam.
  5. Insights

    FINRA Files Plans to Change Series 7 and Other Exams

    New details have emerged on the Securities Industry Essentials Exam required for becoming a registered representative.
  6. Personal Finance

    The Securities Industry Essentials Exam (SIE)

    The Securities Industry Essentials Exam (SIE) is a new exam being introduced by FINRA to replace parts of the Series 6, Series 7, Series 22, Series 55 (57), Series 79, Series 82, Series 86/87, ...
  7. Financial Advisor

    Series 24 Exam Prep: Stock Exchanges

    Before you take the series 24, you need to understand exchanges, listing requirements and much more.
  8. Financial Advisor

    Series 63, Series 65 Or Series 66?

    When joining the world of investment professionals, you must take the right exams.
  9. Financial Advisor

    Tips For Passing The Series 6 Exam

    Find out what you can do during the test to make sure you get a passing score.
  10. Personal Finance

    CFA Vs. Series 7: Which is Easier

    Find out which is exam is easier: The Chartered Financial Analyst (CFA) exam, or the Series 7 securities exam for registered representatives.
Frequently Asked Questions
  1. I'm about to retire. If I pay off my mortgage with after-tax money I have saved, I can save 6.5%. Should I do this?

    Only you and your financial advisor, family, accountant, etc. can answer the "should I?" question because there are many ...
  2. My wife and I both converted our Traditional IRAs to Roth IRAs over a decade ago and have invested the maximum allowed each year since. We're buying our first home soon. Do we both qualify for one-time, tax-free, $10,000 distributions?

    You and your spouse each qualify for a penalty-free distribution of up to $10,000 for the purchase, acquisition or construction ...
  3. Is a Thrift Savings Plan (TSP) a qualified retirement plan?

    Take advantage of the government's retirement plan for employees with the Thrift Savings Plan. As with a 401(k), contributions ...
  4. Who manages the assets in a Roth 401(k) account?

    Learn how to personally manage the assets in your Roth 401(k) plan and determine the best options available to help meet ...
Trading Center