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Personal Touch to axe 12 per cent of its workforce

Max Wright PTFS 480

Personal Touch Financial Services is axing 12 per cent of its workforce in a bid to cut costs by around £1.5m.

The network has today placed 80 of its 180-strong workforce into consultation. There will be 22 job cuts in total, spread across all departments.

Staff were briefed this morning and individual consultations will start in the next few days.

The cuts come as part of a restructure of the business, known internally as the Vision 2013 strategy, in which some departments could merge.

Chief executive Max Wright (pictured) says: “The realignment of the business means that some staff will be placed at risk. This does not mean they will all be made redundant. In total we will lose only 22 roles, as staff will be re-deployed into the new divisions within the revised structure.

“Staff have this morning been given briefings from our directors and individual consultations will take place throughout the course of the next few days.”

PTFS’ 2011 accounts were filed on 14 September and show total staff costs, which includes the salaries of directors, social security and pension contributions, increased from £4.9m in 2010 to £6.4m in 2011, a 27 per cent increase in one year.

However, the network claims to have cut staff costs by 25 per cent after former chief executive Doug Crawford, sales and marketing director Dev Malle, director of IFA services John Ruddick and head of sales development Andy Walton left the business.

Total salary and wages for PTFS’ directors grew from £750,239 in 2010 to £839,823 in 2011 and the highest paid director received £209,674, up from £188,035 in 2010.

The accounts also show that turnover fell from £59m in 2010 to £56m in 2011, while pre-tax profit fell from £2.3m in 2010 to £1.2m in 2011.

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Comments

There are 15 comments at the moment, we would love to hear your opinion too.

  1. Nice of PTFS to let its members know 1 hour AFTER the story broke in the national press?! Maybe they should be telling us first to avoid anymore instability? I’ve been contacted by 5 networks in the last few weeks offering an alternative, so PTFS need to be on top of their game if they wish to retain members and avoid a Honister!!!

  2. Max, is this figure before the mass exodus or will there be more?

  3. Nice smile. Remind me, has Mr Wright ever played a Bond villain?

  4. We're all doomed!!! 15th October 2012 at 4:12 pm

    Fees rocketing
    Lots of recent senior staff departures
    Redundancies

    If I were a PTFS AR, I’d be thinking very carefully about my future!

  5. ‘The realignment of the business means that some staff will be placed a trisk’.

    This sort of mealymouthed technospeak is often used by overpaid, underachieving people in high places.

    Why can’t people like him just use straight talk and say, ‘we need to make cost savings so we’ll need to make some redundancies’.

    Another reason for members to jump ship and avoid being ‘Honistered.’

  6. As a member of this network for 7 years, it did well as its business was predominantly mortgage and protection sales, with its own packaging arm. With the tightening up in lending, downturn in housing transactions it is inevitable that the network has been streamlined. IFA fees under the network have been significantly increased from 1 November by up to 50% for sole trader businesses, and RDR will be the next challenge.

    The management are weak, with many of the poor performers gone.

    I would expect it to be sold off at some point, it lost its direction when the original owner Martin Wilson left in 2010.

    Not an industry (or network) with a future for many.

  7. Bring back Martin Wilson! company has only gone downhill since he left, sometimes wonder how its still going. Martin and Amanda are and always will be the “person” in personal touch!

  8. @Dan McIntosh – why should PTFS let you know of an internal restructure. As 80 of the staff were affected maybe PTFS were actually looking after the welfare of their staff and dealing with their emotions instead of letting the members know?? It doesn’t directly affect you but the lives of 80 staff are affected and 80 people are wondering what they will be doing in a months time.

    Why members think that they are more important than the internal staff astounds me!

  9. @ Anon (8:45am) – How does announcing the story to the national media demonstrate that PTFS were looking after the welfare of their staff? Your comment is moronic at best!! What the announcement demonstrates is that PTFS have utter contempt for the welfare of their membership, which is why they are now choosing to leave in droves. It is not unrealistic for members to expect to be told about restructuring before the general public!

  10. @ Dan – you haven’t actually realised that you were moaning that PTFS hadn’t told you that they were conducting an Internal restructure. The staff (who this affects by the way a lot more than you) were told in the morning and then it was announced to the press. So they didn’t tell the members first – so what? Why does it show utter contempt for their membership – should they have told you first? This is the bit I cannot fathom out why you think you should have been told first!

  11. “Why members think that they are more important than the internal staff astounds me!”

    What a stupid comment. Members don’t feel more important than the staff, but they should be more important to Personal Touch than the press. Why should we wait to read about it in the likes of Money Marketing? If it wasn’t for the members paying monthly fees, along with a cut of their commission, then NOBODY at Personal Touch would have a job!!!!!! The sooner you (anonymous cowardly comment earlier) and the rest of the board at Personal Touch realise the importance of their members the better, before the membership leave in their droves and Personal Touch have no network to manage!

  12. I know exactly how important the members are to Personal Touch – you are 100% correct – if there are no members then there is no network – I had figured that one out!

    But what I cannot figure out is that members believe they should be told before being released to the press.

    Somebody had to be told first and it was the press and then the membership were told approx an hour later. Not exactly kept a secret from the members. In past years that may never have come out!

  13. It’s a big shame what’s happening to the PTFS network, and sadly these redundancies will be the first of many. I’m sure the remaining staff there will already be looking to change careers as the instability continues. It’s clear that the FSA/FCA want to see commission abolished across all financial services products, so the future for advisers is grim at best. If you have a good database of HNW clients prepared to pay your fees then great, but the vast majority of us don’t and the general public have no appetite for fees. The number of mortgage and protection brokers has fallen from 35,000 to less than 9,000 (if you believe the figures) in just a few years. I fear the future of the rest of the staff at PTFS is uncertain at best, as fewer advisers means fewer network staff. Farewell to what was once a great network and a pleasant industry to work in 🙁

  14. FSA + RDR + FCA = F.U.B.A.R.
    PTFS – AR = RIP PDQ!!!

  15. what’s the odds on the final founding member making it to Christmas?

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