As part of its Consumer Duty support, Quilter has launched a new client communications guide to help financial advisers deliver messages to clients more effectively.
Using behaviour science principles, Quilter has provided advisers with a framework to help comply with the Consumer Duty’s ‘Consumer Understanding’ outcome. Quilter refers to this framework as CLEAR, an acronym designed to make existing client communications more customer friendly. The acronym stands for:
- Capture my attention: Help customers to pay attention to the right piece of information at the right time.
- Lighten the load: Reduce the complexity of information and the effort required to process it.
- Explain what it means for me: Remove ambiguity by managing expectations and making information relevant to customers.
- Arrange the content simply: Use the layout to create a fluent visual journey and help customers compare options.
- Reassure me: Promote confidence and control by using reassuring, positive language.
For each element of CLEAR, Quilter has provided advisers with two simple behavioural science techniques they can use. This will help advisers meet the Financial Conduct Authority’s expectations when it comes to supporting customers to make effective decisions. In its new rules, the FCA highlighted five points which represent good practice in this regard – engaging, layering, simple, relevant and well-timed.
Quilter itself is in the process of adopting the CLEAR principles for all the client-facing materials it produces, including its suite of brochures, client letters, forms and disclosure documentation. It also uses consumer testing of its materials to understand the impact of these communications.
Jeremy Mugridge, Marketing Director at Quilter, said: “The FCA has set a clear expectation within its Consumer Duty about how providers should be supporting customers in their decision-making process. Client communications are critical to this and very easy to get wrong. As a result, we wanted to share a few simple and practical tips with advisers to not only get their communications working as the FCA would expect, but also working better for their business.
“Using behavioural science is a great way to remove some of the psychological barriers and harness the behavioural drivers that humans naturally have in order to promote better understanding. We have seen a great response in consumer testing on our communications as a result of the CLEAR principles. Not every principle of CLEAR has to be used every time, but it will provide advisers with a straightforward and easy to use framework for both regular and ad-hoc communications.”