Adviser education framework re-imagined and re-engineered

From

Nick Hakes

The adviser education framework will be completely re-engineered under a collaborative approach being taken by the Association of Financial Advisers (AFA).

Campus AFA General Manager, Nick Hakes said to create a new standard for adviser education, the AFA has engaged the Beddoes Institute to undertake landmark research. This work is being supported by partners Asteron Life and Kaplan Professional and draws on industry-wide collaboration to create a new advice competency framework.

“Our research with The Beddoes Institute will ultimately produce a pragmatic new approach that recognises all other frameworks in our market,” Mr Hakes said.

The Financial Advice Standards & Ethics Authority (FASEA) presents an opportunity to re-imagine an education pathway that reflects what consumers value from their financial advisers. It can then put into practice the elements of the Professional Standards legislation.

“It is critical to embrace professional education as it continues to evolve and becomes an integral part of the future of the industry,” said Daniel Waller, acting Head of Asteron Life. “As long-term partners of education through the AFA, we are delighted to be part of this project which will lead to even higher standards. It will offer substantial help and support for advisers and become increasingly important as we transition through the next era of financial advice.”

Rethinking what defines a great adviser can help shape a different consumer view about the positive change advisers create in the lives of their clients. They are seen as a trusted resource to help people clarify their goals and achieve a sense of wellbeing.

The research will provide industry-led evidence of what the education pathway should look like. The framework will include technical and communication skills, interpersonal qualities and personal attributes as described in white papers previously published by the AFA and the Beddoes Institute. The project will also result in a white paper and a practical, printed implementation kit for licensees.

To conduct the research, Beddoes has adopted the Delphi process, a widely-accepted consensus development methodology that facilitates structured dialogue among a panel of experts to distil an agreed framework from the varying opinions of participants.

“The first stage of this process is almost complete with CEOs and senior executives of licensees, consumers, advisers and other industry groups having participated in structured interviews. The next second phase of the research is a series of iterative online voting on draft framework elements by an online expert panel,” said Beddoes Institute’s Dr Adam Tucker. “Each panel participant will be asked to respond to up to five surveys over three months, voting on key elements.”

The AFA is now calling on advisers to participate in the panel. The participation form can be accessed here. 

“This is an important inflection point for our profession,” Mr Hakes said. “It needs the voice of advisers to help shape the profession we want to become.”

Advisers, regulators, academics and professional associations will be canvassed to ensure that the draft framework aligns with the needs and expectations of the industry. The aim is to create an industry-wide, pragmatic educational framework that will succeed because it has been built by the very people who need to work it.

The industry white paper, framework and implementation kits are expected to be available for release in October 2017.

“There has never been a better opportunity for adviser knowledge and expertise,” Mr Hakes said. “Timing they say is everything. And the time to start an adviser education revolution is now.”

You must be logged in to post or view comments.