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IT failure halts ifs adviser exams in 22 centres

The ifs School of Finance Advanced Financial Advice online exam system suffered an IT failure at 22 centres across the UK yesterday, leaving large numbers of advisers unable to take the exam.

Candidates taking the 1pm exam yesterday were given the wrong client fact-find information which prevented them from completing the test.

Seven advisers in the Bristol testing centre walked out after waiting for over two hours without being told whether the exam had been cancelled or not.

The ifs says the problem is down to a failure of the system provided by online testing company Pearson VUE.

Sunday Financial Group IFA Geoffrey Bartlett says: “We were kept waiting for some time and we had to contact the ifs when we were not given any information about when the problem would be solved. I have taken four days off work to study for this exam. The level of rage and anger inside the building was absolutely awesome.”

An ifs spokesman says: “We apologise unreservedly for the inconvenience and stress this caused them and regret that such a situation has occurred, which was beyond our control. We will be working with Pearson VUE to make sure they put steps in place to prevent this from happening again. All affected students will be contacted today and offered alternative dates to sit the examination, based on the fact-find they have already prepared for.”



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There are 7 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. David Trenner - Intelligent Pensions 9th September 2011 at 9:13 am

    These things happen.

    The advent of RDR is pushing more people into the exam halls, and raising the chances of a problem with any examining body.

    Unlike the CII, which is a not-for-profit business, the IFS are looking to make money on exams. Lets hope they weren’t cutting corners.

    Pearson Vue is also looking to make money on exams.

  2. Well I sat this exam yesterday, in Manchester, and luckily got the right fact find in the exam so took the exam as planned.

    Highly annoying for those affected but at least it’ll get sorted out for them – what would be annoying would be if they LOSE my exam papers and I had to resit it; don’t think my hand would take another 3 hour battering 🙁

    Fingers crossed for those who took it and those affected here and will take it soon.

  3. Not really that simple though is it!

    I now have to keep my mind on the exam which should have been finished yesterday.

    Have been booking appointments to make up the lost time, so very busy next 3 weeks.

    There was no information, IFS were not talking to Pearson Vue and hanging around while trying to keep ones cool is not good exam prep.

    I have said from day one that this is nonsense, why we have to memorise tons of superficial crap to regurgitate like the proverbial parrot, in a time frame we do not operate in, is the work of people who do not understand what we do.

  4. To those of you who have elected to take this exam using a PC have a strong think about whether this is the right route! I also took the exam in Manchester yesterday and believe me you are extremely hard pushed to manually write the report in the allocated 3 hours (I finished mine with 30 seconds to spare). Moreover my handwriting looked like hieroglyphics by the end! I can type at a fair rate but I think most will find it a real push to type the thing out in the allocated time. May be an opportunity to switch to a manually written paper….just a thought.

  5. Just sums up the whole RDR situation to a tee NOT FIT FOR PURPOSE. How much more do the FSA think they can heap on Advisers before they tell them to go and shove it where the sun don’t shine. Just another example of this RDR not working. ROLL ON RETIREMENT

  6. Disgrace !
    The word on the street is 50% to leave the industry by 2012
    Better call it 51%

  7. What an utter disgrace, and not the first time this has happened. Does not inspire me to carry on with my studies I have to say.

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