Advisors should be fluent in self-directed brokerage, with an established solution in place. They should have adequate infrastructure to support this kind of business, as well as partnerships with money managers capable of accessing 401(k) plans.
Whether someone is making investment decisions on his or her own or not, it's important that the 401(k) investment is given an appropriate amount of ongoing attention.
The 401(k) will be a significant source of income in retirement, so the more disciplined people are by investing early in life, the more likely they will meet their goals when they retire. Many people are not confident they can do this on their own, so they turn to an advisor for guidance.
Read MoreWhat makes a retirement city great
If investors decide to consult with an advisor, it's suggested that they meet with someone with whom they are personally comfortable and who understands the specific financial situation.
Once an advisor has a grasp on the individual's financial situation and distinguishes his or her goals, a risk assessment should be done to determine a proper asset allocation and then recommendations on investments.
—By Andy Roberts, financial advisor/portfolio manager at Charleton Financial.