Skip to the main content
This website uses cookies to give you a better online experience. By using this website or closing this message, you are agreeing to our cookie policy. More information
Alberta Supports Contact Centre

Toll Free 1-877-644-9992

Guest Account Sign In Sign Up

Credit/Debt Counsellor

Credit/debt counsellors provide advice on personal money management, offer mentorship on how to use credit wisely, and help individuals recover from financial crisis such as out of control debts, employment or income changes.

  • Avg. Salary $77,878.00
  • Avg. Wage $40.76
  • Minimum Education Varies
  • Outlook below avg
  • Employed 11,000
  • In Demand Medium
Also Known As

Credit Counsellor, Debt Counsellor, Debt Management Consultant, Money Coach, Money Mentor

NOC Codes

In Canada, the federal government groups and organizes occupations based on a National Occupational Classification (NOC) system. This alis occupation may not reflect the entire NOC group it is part of. Data for the NOC group can apply across multiple occupations.

The NOC system is updated every 5 years to reflect changes in the labour market. Government forms and labour market data may group and refer to an occupation differently, depending on the system used. Here is how this occupation has been classified over time:

  • 2006 NOC: Financial Planners (1114.1) 
  • 2006 NOC-S: Other Financial Officers (B014) 
  • 2011 NOC: Other financial officers (1114) 
Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

18%
18%
Average Wage
Starting
Overall
Top
  • Certification Not Regulated
  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Interest Codes
The Credit/Debt Counsellor is part of the following larger National Occupational Classification (NOC).
Financial Planners
METHODICAL

Interest in obtaining information from clients such as bank account records, pension plan and other employee benefit-package information, tax records, insurance policies and related documentation; may also arrange for sale of financial products and investments depending on licence held, and monitor portfolios to ensure quality and profitability

INNOVATIVE

Interest in analyzing clients' financial records to set goals and develop financial strategies

DIRECTIVE

Interest in consulting with clients concerning cash management, finances, insurance coverage, investments, retirement and estate planning and taxes and legal matters; and in helping to expand business and attract new clients

Reading Interest Codes
A Quick Guide

The interest code helps you figure out if you’d like to work in a particular occupation. 
It’s based on the Canadian Work Preference Inventory (CWPI), which measures 5 occupational interests: Directive, Innovative, Methodical, Objective and Social.

Each set of 3 interest codes is listed in order of importance.

A code in capital letters means it’s a strong fit for the occupation.

A code in all lowercase letters means the fit is weaker.

Learn More

Duties
Updated Apr 28, 2017

In general, credit/debt counsellors:

  • meet with clients to learn about their overall financial situation by examining income sources and expenditures
  • review clients’ debt records to determine creditors, terms and securities, and interest
  • help clients determine monthly budgets
  • explore pros and cons of various available options
  • help clients prioritize their debt loads and establish debt repayment plans
  • negotiate with creditors and courts on their clients' behalf
  • provide education and resources on personal or family finances
  • keep clients’ information confidential.

Credit/debt counsellors may also hold one-on-one sessions, group sessions or seminars to provide training on how to use money and credit wisely in the future.

Working Conditions
Updated Apr 28, 2017

Credit/debt counsellors may work on their own or as part of a team. They may be self-employed or work for a large corporation or non-profit organization. They may work regular office hours with some evenings and weekends, or they may work in shifts. Shift work is more typical for those who work in call centres.

Credit/debt counsellors sometimes encounter clients who are anxious or irate. While training programs may offer instruction for dealing with difficult clients, counsellors typically develop their most effective skills through experience. For counsellors at the beginning of their careers, a corporate environment may provide a better learning environment and greater support than a smaller organization or self-employment would.

  • Strength Required Lift up to 5 kg
Skills & Abilities
Updated Apr 28, 2017

Credit/debt counsellors need to possess:

  • a genuine interest in helping people
  • a positive attitude
  • excellent communication skills, especially in active listening
  • respect for client confidentiality
  • good interpersonal skills
  • the ability to put clients at ease
  • the ability to remain calm and objective in difficult situations
  • the ability to gather and analyze information
  • excellent mathematical skills
  • good computer skills
  • good problem-solving skills.

They should enjoy teaching and helping people and be willing to keep up with industry developments.

Educational Requirements
Updated Apr 28, 2017

Educational requirements for this occupation vary. Some employers provide on-the-job training. However, most prefer to hire individuals who have an undergraduate degree in a related field of study such as accounting, finance, economics, psychology, social work, human ecology or counselling.

Knowledge of consumer issues and community resources is an asset.


Related Education

The following schools offer programs or courses that are related to this occupation but are not required to enter the field.

Grande Prairie Regional College

Mount Royal University

Northern Alberta Institute of Technology

Royal Roads University

Thompson Rivers University

For a broad list of programs and courses that may be related to this occupation try searching using keywords.

Certification Requirements
Updated Apr 28, 2017

Certification is not required, as there is currently no legislation regulating this occupation. 

Some accreditation programs recognize the integrity, training, knowledge and unique skills of credit/debt counsellors in the areas of personal finance, consumer credit, money management and counselling. Therefore, participating in a voluntary certification program may enhance employment and advancement opportunities.

Examples of available designations for credit/debt counsellors include:

The Canadian Association of Credit Counselling Services (CACCS) endorses the CCC designation for registered members of the Ontario Association of Credit Counselling Services (OACCS).The CCC program includes both AFCC and ICQC training and also includes extensive work experience. Originally developed by OACCS for credit/debt counsellors employed by non-profit organizations, it is now considered the highest professional designation available to credit/debt counsellors in Canada.

The AFCC designation was developed earlier by the OACCS and it remains available as a stand-alone designation administered by OACCS for the Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education. Although not as highly valued as the CCC designation, the AFCC designation does not require OACCS membership.

To become a registered Insolvency Counsellor candidates must complete the Insolvency Counsellor's Qualification Course (ICQC). This course is required under Canada's Bankruptcy and Insolvency Act for insolvency and bankruptcy professionals. It is offered as a stand-alone program through the Canadian Association of Insolvency and Restructuring Professionals (CAIRP).

Each of these designations requires continuous education in order to maintain certification.

Employment & Advancement
Updated Apr 28, 2017

Most credit/debt counsellors are employed by not-for-profit credit counselling or debt management organizations. Others may be self-employed or employed by:

  • for-profit credit counselling agencies
  • financial institutions including banks and credit unions
  • loan brokerages.

Because credit/debt counsellors work closely with people and with confidential financial information, employers may require a criminal record check as a condition of employment.

Experienced credit/debt counsellors working at financial institutions may become credit managers. Those who work for credit counselling organizations may advance to director or manager roles.

Credit/debt counsellors are part of the larger 2011 National Occupational Classification 1114: Other financial officers. In Alberta, 87% of people employed in this classification work in the Finance, Insurance, Real Estate and Leasing [pdf] industry.

The employment outlook [pdf] in this occupation will be influenced by a wide variety of factors including:

  • trends and events affecting overall employment (especially in the Finance, Insurance, Real Estate and Leasing industry)
  • location in Alberta
  • employment turnover (work opportunities generated by people leaving existing positions)
  • occupational growth (work opportunities resulting from the creation of new positions)
  • size of the occupation.

In Alberta, the B014: Other Financial Officers occupational group is expected to have a below-average annual growth of 1.1% from 2016 to 2020. In addition to job openings created by employment turnover, 123 new positions are forecasted to be created within this occupational group each year.

Employment turnover is expected to increase as members of the baby boom generation retire over the next few years. Turnover is also typically higher in major cities, and often increases during periods of economic downturn.

Wage & Salary
Updated Apr 28, 2017

Salaries for credit/debt counsellors vary greatly depending on their level of education, experience, accreditation and location.

Other financial officers

Survey Methodology

Survey Analysis

Overall Wage Details
Average Wage
Average Salary
Hours Per Week

Hourly Wage
For full-time and part-time employees
  • Low
  • High
  • Average
  • Median
Starting
Overall
Top
Wages* Low (5th percentile) High (95th percentile) Average Median
Starting $17.98 $78.28 $33.06 $30.22
Overall $20.85 $97.74 $40.76 $35.43
Top $23.39 $135.38 $48.72 $42.06

Swipe left and right to view all data. Scroll left and right to view all data.

* All wage estimates are hourly except where otherwise indicated. Wages and salaries do not include overtime hours, tips, benefits, profit shares, bonuses (unrelated to production) and other forms of compensation.

B: Good Reliability
Data Reliability Code Definition

Good Reliability, represents a CV of between 6.01% and 15.00% and/or fewer than 30 survey observations and/or if survey observations represent less than 50% of all estimated employment for the occupation.


Industry Information
Public Administration
ALL INDUSTRIES
Finance, Insurance, Real Estate, Leasing

Skills Shortage

Employers that Recruited in the Last 2 Years

58%
58%

Recruiting Employers that Experienced Hiring Difficulties

18%
18%

Employers with Unfilled Vacancies of over 4 Months

5%
5%

Vacancy Rate

2%
Related Post-Secondary Field of Study
  • Business, Management and Administrative Studies
  • Computer and Information Technology
  • Mathematics
  • Social Sciences, Law and Religious Studies
  • Social, Community and Protective Services
Other Sources of Information
Updated Apr 28, 2017

Association for Financial Counseling and Planning Education website: www.afcpe.org

Canadian Association of Credit Counselling Services (CACCS) and Ontario Association of Credit Counselling Services (OACCS) website: financialfitness.ca

Credit Counselling Canada website: creditcounsellingcanada.ca

For more information on career planning, education and jobs call the Alberta Supports Contact Centre toll-free at 1-877-644-9992 or 780-644-9992 in Edmonton, or visit an Alberta Supports Centre near you.

Updated Apr 28, 2017. The information contained in this profile is current as of the dates shown. Salary, employment outlook and educational program information may change without notice. It is advised that you confirm this information before making any career decisions.

Was this page useful?
Top