Friends Provident chief executive Trevor Matthews has been appointed chairman of the Financial Services Skills Council and is expected to take a salary of £30,000 for the role.
The news comes after the FSSC was relicensed at the end of March by the UK Commission for Employment and Skills and a panel of ministers, following a strategic review.
Matthews, who is a past president of the Chartered Insurance Institute, says he is passionate about financial education and professionalism.
He says he supports the concept of alternative assessments and pushed for them to be allowed under the RDR.
Matthews says: “I am in favour of alternative routes but the key issue is to make sure the results are comparable. It looks like the alternative route is possible but it is probably going to cost more.”
He declined to give a view of the alternative assessment launched last week by the Association of Independent Financial Advisers, saying he has not yet looked at it.
It looks like the alternative route is possible but it is probably going to cost more
Matthews, who says one of his first priorities is to find a permanent chief executive for the skills council, plans to take a back-seat role once the organisation’s new strategy is in place.
He says: “I am hoping that once we get the new regime in place, the new board members in place and the new structure in place, the organisation should be able to perform quite well without a lot of hands-on involvement from the chairman.”
Paladin Financial Services managing director Tim Purdon says: “The Financial Services Skills Council has an image problem that it needs to address. I welcome Trevor’s appointment and I hope he brings some sense of purpose to the skills council.”