Taking a “holistic approach” to client finances is becoming more important in light of the cashflow pressures faced by many as a result of COVID-19, and Professional IQ College CEO Rod Severn says more and more advisers are starting to see the value in utilising this method.
Severn says that a holistic view doesn’t mean advisers need to become “experts in all areas” - simply that they need to spot areas which may need attention, and to refer clients to other specialists where necessary. He says clients find a lot of comfort in working with an adviser who takes a 360-degree view of their finances, and who understands their position against a broader political and economic landscape.
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“It’s no coincidence that more and more advisers are finding this approach helpful, especially with COVID-19 highlighting the micro/macro links that are embedded in our economic fabric,” Severn said.
“If you look at something like estate planning, where an adviser might come in and recommend life or income protection insurance - what does that do to the client’s overall availability of cash?
“You need to have a view of that bigger picture, and it’s about triggering that level of knowledge and being able to consider all aspects of a client’s finances, not just being narrow in the advice that you give.”
Severn says that some advisers have expressed interest in pursuing additional strands as part of their Level 5 qualification, and are seeing this as a step towards diversifying their advice capabilities. He says that, ultimately, a well-rounded approach will result in better client outcomes - something every adviser is focused on demonstrating to the regulators.
“We’ve had some interest from advisers who want to do more,” Severn said.
“When they completed the qualification for the area that they specialise in, they’ve then come back and told us that they want to do an additional strand because they think they can use that in their business moving forward.
“I do think most advisers just want to knock over the qualification and do what they have to do, but there are certainly some who are looking at the bigger picture.”