PFS members call for collaboration

by | Mar 1, 2022

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The Chartered Insurance Institute has published the findings of the Shaping the future together consultation, which encouraged members and stakeholders to have their say to help shape the professional body’s strategy and relationship with the Personal Finance Society (PFS).

The consultation sought feedback on the advantages and disadvantages in how the Personal Finance Society and the CII Group currently operate, and how the personal finance and insurance professions can work together to raise standards and secure public trust.

Feedback showed preference for the Personal Finance Society to remain part of the CII Group, with greater collaboration between the Boards and a new leader empowered to raise public trust in the profession.

Economies of scale provided by a shared operational infrastructure, access to CII exams, Chartered titles, Statement of Professional Standing (SPS), Continuing Professional Development (CPD) from a renowned body; and being able to work together on common areas of interest, such as raising public trust and professional standards, were all identified by financial planning professionals as reasons for remaining part of the CII Group.

There was also consensus on the need for a leader of the Personal Finance Society who could achieve effective engagement with the government, regulators and media.

Sarah Lord (pictured), president of the Personal Finance Society, said: “The Personal Finance Society board would like to thank all members who contributed their views through the consultation; we remain focused on delivering the services that best meet the needs and expectations of our members, championing the value of professional advice and ensuring the best possible outcomes for clients. We also look forward to engaging with the Chartered Insurance Institute on common areas of interest that include raising professional standards and improving public confidence and trust.”

Helen Phillips, Chair of CII Board, added: “Through the consultation feedback it is clear our members want the CII Group – Societies, Local Institutes and Regional Committees – to work together. The boards of the CII and Personal Finance Society will together reflect on the views members have shared through this consultation, drawing on these to shape a future governance structure that delivers the economies of scale and the clear, shared purpose members have told us they want.”

Wider consultation responses

More broadly, the consultation feedback provides the CII with a clear steer on the services and support insurance and personal finance professionals need and want to thrive professionally. Feedback includes the need for:

  1. Streamlined qualifications, modern assessment methods and the introduction of behavioural content provided the focus on technical knowledge is not diluted.
  2. A focus on raising public trust in the profession through the promotion of professional standards and increasing confidence that member misconduct will be addressed.
  3. A common strategy and clear purpose (and objectives) agreed for Societies, Local Institutes and Regional Committees.
  4. A governance and operating structure that achieves greater economies of scale.
  5. A Professional Map that provides individuals and firms, both large and small, with clarity around the competences required of a professional and what development support is available to address any gaps.

Helen Phillips concluded: “In the coming months the CII’s Board will use consultation feedback to help inform the next five-year strategy for our professional body, so that we build on the long and proud history that underpins our Royal Charter to “secure and justify the confidence of the public” in the insurance and personal finance profession.

“The CII’s leadership team, working with a colleague group, will begin prioritising and implementing those proposals for which the consultation has shown clear support from our members. We aim to share more information on the areas for immediate action in the months ahead.

“We are committed to engaging with our members and our thanks go to everyone who shared their thoughts, needs and expectations by taking part.”

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