The ifs School of Finance has begun piloting a new advanced qualification for financial advisers, which aims to improve client communications.
The new course, called the Advanced Financial Advice Module (AFAM), is already being studied by a number of advisers and their feedback will contribute to the final format of the course.
The AFAM qualification’s shape, structure, content and skills development will follow from the Retail Distribution Review (RDR), according to ifs, and will not be used to influence the outcome of the review.
Mark Roberts, head of financial regulation at the ifs School of Finance, says: “Once we have analysed all the feedback from the pilots and the RDR begins to take shape, we will refine the qualification further and then make it available to all.
“The key to this is to have the skills needs, and the current gaps in meeting these needs, dictate the future rather than attempt to shoehorn existing strategies into future practice.”
The school says it believes advanced financial advice qualifications need to focus on analysis, evaluation and presentation of information, rather than pure technical knowledge.
ifs says recent research has highlighted a need to improve these skills and says they better reflect actual practice.
The AFAM qualification aims to develop advisers’ skills in competency and provision of financial advice, which is not adequately covered by other qualifications, with a particular focus on enhancing client communications.
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