The board of the Personal Finance Society (PFS) - the professional body for the financial planning profession in the UK – has today announced it will recruit an interim CEO. The new role will provide executive leadership as the society looks to develop its working practices in order to better meet its members’ interests.
Commenting on the unanimous board decision to commence the recruitment process, Sarah Lord, president of the PFS, noted that the CEO role was previously dissolved by the former CEO of the Chartered Insurance Institute (CII) in June 2021.
“Over the last year the PFS has worked with the CII to establish the most effective way to manage the organisation,” she said. “It has become clear that the best way to represent and advocate the PFS members’ interests and preserve and protect its assets and deliver tailored member support is through the appointment of a full-time executive CEO role.”
Lord added that members’ feedback supported the need for a dedicated executive voicing their interests within the CII’s ‘Shaping the future together consultation’. The CII executive is supportive too, she said, which is why the PFS is starting its executive search process immediately and will appoint an interim CEO while it seeks a permanent appointment.
The PFS’s board is made up of volunteers committed to the organisation, the professionalism of its members and its objective of building public confidence. The society has worked in collaboration with the CII, its Royal Charter body, for 18 years.
For the remainder of 2022, the board anticipates that the interim CEO will work together with the volunteer board and employees at the CII, who, under a service contract, are dedicated to providing defined services and supporting PFS members.
Other priorities for the year will include:
- Ensuring there is a dedicated champion to focus on members’ best interests and reflect the divergence of the personal finance and general insurance sectors, while maintaining public confidence in the professional services of members.
- Promoting the PFS strategic business plan and delivering a successful AGM in September 2022.
- Enabling the PFS to deliver a world-class showcase event in November 2022, the Festival of Financial Planning.
- Supporting the volunteer board to ensure that the PFS continues to meet its purpose and, through the CII, can provide members with valuable Chartered status.
The interim CEO will later work with the incoming permanent CEO to ensure a smooth leadership transition.
Recruitment of the interim CEO will be undertaken using a professional consultancy after a service tender and it is anticipated that the selected individual will take on the role before the end of summer 2022.
In response to the news, the CII affirmed its support for the decision made by the PFS. Interim CEO of the CII Jonathan Clark highlighted that one of the key findings of the institute’s ‘Shaping the future together’ consultation was that members wanted greater collaboration between the CII’s and the PFS’s boards and a new PFS leader within the group.
“This was both welcomed and supported by the CII board, so I am delighted the PFS board is recruiting an interim CEO,” he said. “I am, and always have been, deeply committed to working collaboratively with the PFS, to best serve insurance and financial planning professionals. I have been very clear I believe the PFS needs a strong leader and I look forward to working closely with them as soon as they are in place.”