The FCA’s focus on vulnerable customers shows no sign of abating, with its recently published Future Approach to Customers once again highlighting its expectations firms treat them fairly by providing a flexible and tailored response.
But just as there is no ‘”one size fits all” definition of vulnerability, there is also no single way to effectively support vulnerable customers. That is why it is vital staff receive appropriate training which provides them with the tools and confidence to interact with vulnerable customers and adapt processes to deliver the right outcomes.
Vulnerability training should:
- Be extensive: As vulnerability is a wide-ranging issue, training in this area should also include scenarios that demonstrate a wide range of circumstances staff may encounter.
- Not be limited to a single medium: Staff need practical training on responding appropriately to customer vulnerability, such as role play or case discussions, to ensure a thorough understanding and consistency in approach.
- Provide practical tools: There are a number of tools, including the “Texas” and “Idea” frameworks, to help staff structure conversations with vulnerable customers and ensure their needs are identified.
- Be empowering: Staff should have the autonomy to provide flexible, tailored solutions where appropriate.
Phil Deeks is technical director at TCC