The Chartered Insurance Institute has reversed its position on forcing the combined purchase of its exam and revision packages.
The CII has faced widespread criticism of its decision in recent weeks to introduce a new “all-inclusive” unit of exam, study guide and online study tool, RevisionMate, accused of stripping advisers of choice over how they wish to learn and the resources they use for doing so.
The move was criticised by Bespoke Training Solutions – an alternative provider of learning and revision materials, with BTS founder and chartered financial planner Luiza Todd accusing the CII of anti-competitive behaviour.
She says: “The time you realised was when you went to try and book a CII exam and it wouldn’t let you do so unless you paid for their entire package.”
But the CII has since recognised its move may have been premature and will now reinstate the opportunity for exams and learning materials to be purchased separately, while it consults with the broader market and key stakeholders.
The u-turn will affect all financial adviser units that were affected by the changes earlier this month.
CII learning and assessment director Simon Graham says: “We have set aside the coming months for broader consultations. Meanwhile, the option to purchase the respective exam/assessments alongside the new enhanced combined packages will be reinstated by the end of February, in plenty of time to enter for the April exam session.”
Personal Finance Society chief executive Keith Richards says: “The CII is going through a major reform programme, evolving its role and purpose. Within these programmes of change, sometimes a bit of detail can be missed or things don’t always go according to plan. I think that is what has happened here but the CII has held its hands up and we are pleased with the way they have responded and listened to members in a positive and proactive manner.”