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IFA Consortium chief urges firms to welcome graduates

Financial services firms should welcome graduates despite them not bringing a client bank, says IFA Consortium director Tim Sutcliffe.

He says a lack of clients is not a valid reason to deny graduates the opportunity to join firms.

Sutcliffe, also pi financial Dixon Sutcliffe & Co chief executive, says companies often use this excuse as a cop- out for not bothering to recruit and train new entrants.

He says the one thing IFAs do not struggle with is finding clients so as demand grows and adviser numbers dwindle, many intermediaries exiting the market would welcome a competent heir to which they can pass on their client banks.

Sutcliffe says: “The age of advisers is a major issue. As the population grows and adviser numbers shrink, those leaving would probably love to give their client bank to an ethical, knowledgeable adv-iser just coming into the market. IFAs, like in any professional business, need a struc- tured exit plan that allows them to hand over their business. Not having clients should not be a barrier – that is a bit of a cop-out.”

IFG financial planning strategist Donna Bradshaw says smaller firms should look to emulate their bigger cousins by setting up graduate recruitment schemes.

She says: “Recruiting graduates, even without a client base, is a good thing. Big companies should and can do it as they have the resources but smaller firms are not as well equipped.”

Belgravia Insurance Consultants Paul White says: “Graduates, regardless of whether they have a client base or not, have stamina and the ability to pass the exams and are better rounded individuals than those coming in from school.”

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