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More life managers targeting IFA jobs

Support team cutbacks prompt move to advice firms

Life company sales and support staff are increasingly moving into the IFA sector as insurance companies cut back their adviser support teams, according to recruitment firm Paul Harper Search & Selection.

Principal Paul Harper says that as the recession is forcing many life companies to make redundancies and cut back their adviser support teams, many account managers are looking to move into the IFA space.

Paul Harper Search & Selection’s intermediary sales salary survey shows that total earnings for life company account managers has dropped by 13 per cent from an average £82,758 in 2007 to £71,952 in 2009.

Harper says: “The number of account managers employed by life companies is reducing as companies are trying to achieve more business for less expense.

“More people are coming out of those types of roles and moving into IFA positions. A lot of these staff are quite well qualified because they have been sponsored by their life companies to take their exams. With margins earned on products coming down and more life companies moving to a platform model, they require more technical staff to help advisers with the technology rather than more transactional roles.”

Harper says he helped one senior life company manager move to an IFA business to help its transition to a fee-based model ready for the RDR and argues that staff with corporate experience who have had an outside perspective on the IFA sector are well equipped to help smaller firms transform their business model. He also says that broker consultants are often well-trained in specialist areas such as tax planning, which are also highly transferable skills that are useful in IFA firms.

In Partnership investment director Mark Pittaccio says: “Quite often, employers have paid for life company staff to do QCF level four so I see no reason why they should not make a good transition into IFA firms.

“The only danger is whether they join with that life office’s brand stamped right through them like a stick of rock.”

To buy a full copy of the sal-aries report, contact cv@paulharper search.co.uk.

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