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IFP moves focus to core skills

The Institute of Financial Planning is to change its focus to concentrate on delivering training and education.

Speaking at the IFP annual conference in Wales last week, president Barry Horner said the institute needs to create tools and training to equip emerging professionals.

Horner said training courses will be centred on enhancing cashflow modelling capability and expertise, improving questioning and listening skills and attracting and securing desired clients.

They will also look at creating financial planning-led and goals-based investment strategies, recruiting new entrants to the industry and how to further develop risk-profiling.

Horner said: “We need to focus on the core skills of a financial planner and we plan to do this. We deliberately plan to change our focus in terms of what we offer to members as an institute and focus almost exclusively on delivering training and education which is entered on developing a competent and professional financial planner.

“As a profession, financial planning is in its infancy. We have yet to fully define and agree upon what financial planning actually includes and does not include. Compared with the established professions, we are making it up as we go along, day by day, client by client. Our potential is out there and we now have sight of where we need to head.”

Macquarie Bank head of financial planning John Baxter said advisers need to do more to change their business models to focus remuneration on the service they offer clients, rather than product sales.

He said: “The focus on changing remuneration is not being met by changing behaviours. The new model needs to be based on the service being provided to clients, not sales, and I think there is still some way to go to achieve that.”

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