As October approaches practitioners who offer specialist transfer advice are weighing the regulators latest words carefully and, in particular, the ones regarding the ban on contingent charging.
In the new world a client needs to be ready to commit to abridged advice with its inevitable “computer says no” outcome or pay for a full review, with the same fee regardless of outcome.
In respect of the second category what would make a person comfortable committing to that expenditure knowing that it could lead to a recommendation to stay in the scheme?
We believe the answer is knowledge.
And when we say knowledge we’re talking about a comprehensive education about staying in, or transferring out of, a preserved DB scheme. Being able to weigh up the risks and opportunities of either course of action before asking a professional to do the in depth and paid for work.
When we first put together our Stay or Transfer client educational box set the first thing we recognised was that to educate the client successfully first meant engaging the client. We filmed our summary videos in woods, in fields, by rivers and bridges to hook the viewer in so they would commit to the education. We included colourful animations, captions for those who needed them, and made the whole viewing experience enjoyable and easy to access.
By making the viewing experience interactive we made it easy for advisers to capture priceless MI about their client’s viewing experience too - now invaluable for both regulatory and commercial risk purposes.
We worked with a highly experienced Financial Services litigation lawyer with first hand experience of the sector who encouraged Money Alive to build depth into the education (through the inclusion of case studies) and to be comprehensive in our coverage. We also engaged with a leading PI provider to create content and a process that would have a positive impact on PI renewal negotiations.
Last summer we did a survey of over 1.000 viewers who had completed Money Alive’s Final Salary box set - over 98% said they valued their adviser giving them access to it! Over 98%! What can be said of alternative triage provision - does the data even exist?
When a client approaches you looking for advice about their DB benefits there is a real opportunity to demonstrate something extremely positive about your brand - that your client’s financial wellbeing is so important that you want to spend a bit of time to help them thoroughly understand the implications of their decision to stay or transfer. A logical first step before fully charging them to do the detail!
If they decide to go on to pay for a review you’ll have valuable evidence of their engagement and understanding that can help reduce your risk. If they decide not to, you will have given them a really positive experience of your brand, making them more likely to use you for other professional services.
As October approaches it’s a great time to think about triage. Is it just another regulatory hurdle to overcome or an opportunity to professionally engage and educate your client, add value to the relationship, and project your brand values?
And don’t just take our word that using Money Alive can work for advisers , we get regular feedback from clients about how Money Alive has helped their firm:
“Incredibly helpful - a fundamental part of our DB process.” Matthew Harris, Prosperis