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Graduate drive nets just two recruits


AN ambitious scheme to recruit 1,000 graduates a year into IFA firms is on the brink of collapse after it placed just two in nine months.


Aifa is now warning the Gradus scheme, created by the IFA Association last July in a bid to increase the number of young IFAs, could be scrapped.


All parties blame the failure of the scheme, which attracted interest from 900 graduates, on the refusal of IFA firms to take them on.


Just one of the graduates recruited has started work, with another due to start in a few weeks.


But even sole success Clare Thomason says she is “disappointed” after the external training she was expecting was shelved because it is not now cost effective for Gradus to provide it.


Gradus principal Paul Nixon admits it is likely both AIFA and Phil Billingham Associates, responsible for training, will pull out.


AIFA director of policy and technical services Fay Goddard says: “We have been disappointed with the uptake rates and we are not sure if we will carry on with the scheme.”


Billingham says: “I thought the programme Nixon and I devised was likely to succeed. But we had only isolated success, not enough to prove Gradus could work.”


Nixon says he is determined to battle on.

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