The Pensions Management Institute (PMI) has unveiled its Certificate in ‘Pension Scheme Member Guidance’. It has been designed with the aim of supporting experienced and qualified staff working in client facing roles within the pensions and retirement savings industry to help them distinguish the differences between regulated advice and guidance.
Holders of this certificate will be able to deal with a variety of different scenarios e.g. leavers, divorce, retirement, in a clear, concise and empathetic manner without straying into regulated advice.
WEALTH at work, a leading provider of financial education and guidance in the workplace, is the first company to sign-up for it. Although the company already has a team of experienced and qualified staff who provide workplace guidance to many of the UKs leading employers, they believe that this added qualification should become the industry standard for all those offering workplace guidance.
Jonathan Watts-Lay, Director, WEALTH at work, said: “I welcome this new qualification as I believe it is a great benchmark for the industry. In fact, we are putting our entire financial education and guidance staff through this additional qualification with the aim of achieving the certificate by the end of the year. Raising the bar in our industry is especially important given that as a result of the Financial Advice Market Review, we could see unregulated companies offering financial guidance to employees. So, gaining this qualification should be on the agenda for leaders in this field.”
Gareth Tancred, Chief Executive PMI, said: “I am really pleased that WEALTH at work have committed to this. We understand it is very difficult to explain and help members and pension savers on their pension and retirement options, while at the same time not straying into the financial advice trap. Our new Certificate in Pension Scheme Member Guidance will provide a firm basis of knowledge from which their staff can speak with confidence and do their very best to help people achieve the best retirement prospects possible.”
WEALTH at work also provides a regulated advice service. Watts-Lay added: “Guidance is very useful to offer employees who are contemplating their retirement income options and want support, but it’s very important they understand that this differs to regulated advice where personal recommendations are offered. We provide the full package for employees: the financial education and guidance, to help them understand the advantages and disadvantages of their retirement income options, and regulated advice for those who need further help to ensure they make the right decisions.”