St James’s Place Wealth Management has welcomed a further 32 qualified advisers.
The group seek a new career in financial planning and have completed the St James’s Place Academy’s two-year training programme. The graduation ceremony took place on Friday 27 April at the Chartered Insurance Institute, London.
The Academy provides individuals the opportunity to undergo a training programme in one of its four regional academy offices (London, Manchester, Solihull & Edinburgh) before being offered the chance to become wealth managers within the St James’s Place Partnership.
With over 400 graduates so far, the Academy and Next Generation Academy continue to grow, and around 250 more individuals are currently studying on active programmes nationwide with further graduation ceremonies to take place later in the year.
St James’s Place told IFA Magazine that that since 1992, the number of financial advisers in the UK has fallen, while demand for face-to-face financial advice has continued to increase, resulting in a substantial shortage of quality professional advice in the market.
Academy candidates come from a wide range of backgrounds, but are often people looking for a career change or a new challenge. Leading the way in the financial adviser sphere in terms of gender and age, around a quarter of all people to have joined the Academy programme since its inception are women and, at 37, the average age of graduates is significantly lower than the average across the industry.
Academy Director Jason Flood said: “We are proud that all of our graduates have embraced the rigor of our two-year training programme. Their dedication and tenacity to succeed now brings a new cohort of qualified financial advisers to the market. As the requirement for sound financial advice increases, we can be confident of the long-lasting value brought to the sector through The Academy, which continues to be an important and innovative programme bridging the skills gap evident in the UK.
“We encourage, and hope to maintain a broad culture of diversity running through The Academy in the years ahead. At St. James’s Place we actively seek new talent to further enhance the stature of the wider adviser profession. In addition to today’s graduates, we have 250 people currently studying, and look forward to welcoming more individuals to the programme in future.”