View more on these topics

1,400 Advisers still to start RDR studies

Aifa research suggests as many as 1,400 advisers who intend to stay in the market after the RDR have not yet started the qualification process.

The figure is based on NMG research, commissioned by Aifa, of 313 advisers from March this year.

Aifa has set out the final deadlines that advisers who are yet to begin studying must meet to achieve Aifa’s diploma in investment planning in time for the December 31 deadline.

They must apply to take the written exam by June 1 and sit the first exam before August 31. The last date to resit exams to meet the RDR deadline is November 2.

The diploma, which has been developed with the Chartered Institute of Bankers in Scotland and BPP Learning Media, is set at QCF level five.

Aifa policy director Chris Hannant (pictured) says: “It is incredible that some advisers have not yet started to study for their qualification. Time is short for those who still want to use to the diploma to achieve RDR compliance before the deadline.”

The Institute of Financial Services, part of the ifs School of Finance, says it has seen “a surge” of advisers who had planned to leave the market next year but have changed their mind. It has set up a hotline for advisers to talk through their options and the timescales they need to meet to be qualified in time.

Clear IFA director Howard Bullock says: “It is astounding that so many advisers have not even started yet. They will have an intense period of study ahead and it is highly likely that their business and their clients may suffer as a result.”


Gilt trip

Pensions offer more choice and flexibility than ever, says Mike Morrison, head of pensions development at Axa Wealth, but the fact that income remains linked to falling gilts is a hazard

Small wonders

For those brave enough to invest part of their savings in the UK stockmarket, 2011 could be summed up as a roller-coaster ride and the start of 2012 has not been without investment shocks either – witness Tesco’s first profit warning in more than 20 years. But despite the talk of euro-zone and sovereign debt […]


MM Leader: Day of reckoning for claim culture

Eye-watering Financial Services Compensation Scheme levies have become the new normal, with no end in sight to the huge sums that advisers and their clients are paying for the failings of others. Following last month’s £60m interim levy for investment intermediaries, creating a total levy for 2011/12 of £82m, the FSCS last week announced a […]

How do you choose the best online service?

By Ross Jackson, senior marketing manager There are many different protection online services available in the market and no doubt you’ll have used a few when submitting protection business. But why should you have to put up with slow, unresponsive sites for your business when you’re used to dealing with slick, modern user experiences in your […]


News and expert analysis straight to your inbox

Sign up


There are 21 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. If they haven’t started no way they can qualify, they are leaving!

  2. These figures are not astounding, it`s just that the reality of the number of advisors who are preparing to leave the indistry because it is no longer worth the carrot has not dawned on the media, the FSA and everyone else. The general public will find out in a year or two.

  3. An interesting statistic from the RCRO 2012 is that around 50% of advisers already have a suitable qualification, the figure in RCRO 2011 was 54%. Obviously with rounding this isn’t really a decrease – but its not an improvement either!
    Qualifying from a standing start now isn’t impossible 9well not quite) but it is a challenge.

  4. How can this possibly be right? Mr Cicutti says they have all stopped complaining and started their studies. And if Mr Cicutti says so……

  5. Regardless what these ne’er do wells at the FSA do to get rid of ethical long established transaction based iFAs, I will choose when I leave this industry and why. I am not going to be put out of business by inadequate regulators who could not organise a drunken do in a brewery.

  6. How many souls lost on the Titanic -:1,514

    How many souls lost due to RDR ?

    FSA and the goverment should be hanging their heads in shame

  7. Only 1,400?

    Oh, it is a survey of 313 advisers. Hardly representative is it?

  8. Hugh Jeego – what you mean is the public will “SUFFER” in a year or two. What the monkies at the FSA don’t realise, people can hardly afford to feed and clothe their children, what chance you got to get them to pay for advice.

  9. Simon Dickerson 13th April 2012 at 1:14 pm

    Sadly this isnt a surprise, as a profession we constantly talk about wishing to be viewed as having the same professional standing as accountants etc however seem to have limited desire to put the work in necessary to justify this.

    Personally I feel the dumbing down of the exam process from the original proposition has done the industry no favours and if we really want to be taken seriously the process and exams should be rather more onerous than it currently is.

    As for the advisers who are incapable or cant be bothered to get over the relatively “low” hurdle that level 4 qualifications provide I think their exit from the industry can only be beneficial to those of us who have taken the trouble to get properly qualified.

  10. Nigel Barker-Smith 13th April 2012 at 1:49 pm

    So clients don’t pay for advice already????

  11. simon dickerson @ 1.14pm

    Yes I agree, the exams should be set in a challenging language such as Welsh. That would sort the men out from the boys.

    Interestingly I started out in law and the solicitor’s finals were just as boring as FS exams. Worryingly, the best students didn’t make the best lawyers in the real world which probably explains why many Chartered practitioners earn the same as legal secretaries.

  12. Any adviser remaining in the industry will be entitled to demand higher basic salaries due to the extra time, effort, costs required to work in the industry. The days of a c**p basic and and unbelieveable OTE are going fast. Nobody believes them any longer.

  13. “Nick | 13 Apr 2012 12:26 pm

    If they haven’t started no way they can qualify, they are leaving!”

    What a load of rubbish, there’s plenty of time to complete these easy, pointless exams.

    I’ve got three to do by the year end and just passed the first in 10 days start to finish. Not exactly taxing, didn’t exactly impact on business levels or clients, the only thing it did was mess up my Easter!!

    Next one in May and the final one, hopefully in June – job done.

  14. @simon dickerson

    Yet again we have the knee jerk response that qualifications lead to better advisers. This is not actually been proven as #huw’s comment suggests.
    A significant part of adviser “knowledge” is marrying people with solutions that the client find’s acceptable. The solution is not always technically the “best”, but it has to be one with which the consumer will live. And that expertise is rarely found in books.
    Moreover, I would suggest that a significant element of the exam syllabus is actually bad knowledge, especially in relation to investments. The problem with this is that people do not like to work hard to acquire knowledge and then discard it when it is shown to be flawed. Rather they will ignore the flaws, which, in practice, makes the qualification and the knowledge dangerous.
    I fully support the conjecture that advisers should have a good level of competence when they start out on their career, but I am far less convinced that book knowledge thereafter outweighs the knowledge gained “on the Job”. Remember that a decent adviser is updating his or her knowledge continually because of the changes in legislation. And if they are not a decent adviser I doubt that they will survive too long.
    This fetish with qualifications is the product of a regulator with an inferiority complex and a fear of the real world. If the regulator had confidence in what they were doing they would have engaged in dialogue with the adviser community. They would have created a structure that advisers could buy into with enthusiasm. I know of no adviser who does not agree with the ideas behind RDR; I know few who agree with the implementation. Only the inadequate bully bashes people who do not agree with them.

  15. @ Simon Dickerson

    Who would you rather operate on you ?

    Someone who has done the operation a 100 times

    or someone who has a list of exam passes ?

    You can’t exchange practical experience for knowledge.

    Agree with Glen

  16. Simon, you are correct in one respect about being taken seriously etc… like accountants, however people who use accountants have to have one as they deal with their tax affairs, you dont normally meet someone who wont pay their accountants bill, (only years down the road do the customers moan and switch) but 9 times out of 10 these business people pay… However, most people we come across may require some financial advice in some shape or form during their lifetime. Now they got to pay for it, fair enough I say!! To say though, those who cant get over a relatively “low” hurdle as you put it, I think is quite insulting to those who have served this industry well over the years built their practices up on the back of normal every day people, then about 5 years ago thought I might retire in 8 or 9 years time, and hand over to someone else. Its now being forced on them, through no fault of their own, just the fact they are too old to sit exams, and dont need the pressure; but do a bloody good job when sat in front of a client, and have done for a long time… Yes, I have the qualification before you ask, but there are a lot of people who are being shafted here big time, all because someone at the fsa decided to revamp our industry, yes it needed to be done, although it didnt need to have been done like this….

  17. I would be very interested to meet as many advisers who plan to exit by Christmas

  18. Well DH, next time you need an operation I really would recommend you try to find someone who has passed an exam or two: certainly something more demanding than the current level 3 requirement for IFAs, which, as has been pointed out is the same as for a shift manager in McDonalds and the equivalent of the City and Guilds for hairdressing.

    Of course exam qualification offer no certain proof of practical competence but neither does an inability to obtain them.

  19. Ideally someone with both exams and experience.

  20. The last few CFPs I have come accross are ‘potless’

    All the gear and no idea springs to mind !!!

  21. The trouble with RDR is that it is government telling business how to do business. Wherever that has been tried in the past it has failed. It always will.

    The people who failed to anticipate the financial crisis are now using IFAs as the scapegoat — by claiming that the RDR caused them to miss the financial crisis they are tacitly stating that IFAs were causing so much mayhem that it was necessary to drop everything and to protect the public. The fact that they failed to protect the same public against the impending banking crisis doesn’t matter. .

    That is the calibre of staff at Canary Towers – they would sell their grandmother if it could be shown to be compliant.

    Shame on them. Shame.

Leave a comment


Why register with Money Marketing ?

Providing trusted insight for professional advisers.  Since 1985 Money Marketing has helped promote and analyse the financial adviser community in the UK and continues to be the trusted industry brand for independent insight and advice.

News & analysis delivered directly to your inbox
Register today to receive our range of news alerts including daily and weekly briefings

Money Marketing Events
Be the first to hear about our industry leading conferences, awards, roundtables and more.

Research and insight
Take part in and see the results of Money Marketing's flagship investigations into industry trends.

Have your say
Only registered users can post comments. As the voice of the adviser community, our content generates robust debate. Sign up today and make your voice heard.

Register now

Having problems?

Contact us on +44 (0)20 7292 3712

Lines are open Monday to Friday 9:00am -5.00pm