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Affinity links are big draw for advisers

’The wishlist of the average IFA right now is that they simply want more clients’

An increasing number of IFAs are looking to join firms with affinity connections in a bid to boost their client book, says recruitment firm FinancialAdviserCareers.com.

Senior consultant Andrew Fry says advisers are looking to ensure they have a steady stream of new clients, so IFA businesses that have affinity relationships with other companies are proving popular.

He says: “There is one marked trend going through recruitment at the moment and it has nothing to do with the retail distribution review or treating customers fairly. The vast majority of IFA candidates who are approaching recruitment agencies at the moment are doing so for one simple reason – they simply have not enough clients to earn a living.

“They are either not able to prospect for their own clients or they are operating within businesses that do not provide any sort of support in that area. The wishlist of the average IFA right now is that they simply want more clients.”

However, Fry says there are very few IFA businesses out there able to find clients.

’The gold standard method of getting clients is referrals generated on the back of providing a good service. There is a misunderstanding by a lot of advisers that they need a large number of clients.’

He says: “Companies need to be able to show they can provide a constant stream of fresh clients, or clients that will have an ongoing relationship with the firm. The ideal adviser business for them is going to either be one with affinity group connections or those involved in the legal and accountancy marketplace.” Church Hill Finance principal Anthony Badaloo says it can be difficult to make partnerships with solicitor firms work due to a difference in working styles.

He says: “The reason is a cultural difference. It is a different mindset because advisers are sales-driven and solicitors are time-oriented.”

But he adds: “The gold standard method of getting clients is referrals generated on the back of providing a good service. There is a misunderstanding by a lot of advisers that they need a large number of clients. If you are working with your clients and giving a holistic-type service, you can manage a maximum of 50 clients – it is just a question of managing those better.”

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