When it comes to how much time you can spend with your clients, the biggest factor isn’t admin or compliance getting in the way. It’s how much time you spend constructing portfolios. At least that’s what Cerulli says in a new study that asked advisors about the amount of time they spend daily on various tasks.

Based on how FAs approach the construction of client portfolios, Cerulli categorized advisors into three camps: Outsourcers who rely entirely on home-office or third-party models; Do-It-Yourselfers who construct portfolios in-house; and Modifiers, who start with other’s models but adjust them to taste.

Turns out Do-It-Yourselfers spend on average 8.2% less time with clients than advisors who outsource portfolio construction.

That difference mightn’t sound vast in percentage terms but when you consider that by outsourcing portfolio construction you could spend an extra three hours and 22 minutes of a 40-hour week in client meetings — or around 20 full working days a year — it might give some FAs pause.

All three groups of advisors spend roughly the same amount of time (22%) on administrative tasks but not surprisingly Do-It-Yourselfers spend practically double the time building portfolios (19.4%) that their outsourcing cousins do (10%).

Editor's Note: Our calculation of 20 more client-focused days a year was based on a 48-week working year... Every advisor needs a little time off!