When it comes to preparing for the new regime, one of the biggest challenges for longstanding advisers has been turning their years of experience into a practical qualification - however, the latest version of the Level 5 certificate will allow advisers to do exactly that.
Speaking on behalf of Professional IQ College, board member Angi Mann says that parts of the course will allow advisers to submit their client files as evidence - a mechanism which will allow experienced advisers to complete the course by demonstrating practical knowledge.
Mann says this means there won’t be “hours and hours of studying” for advisers already well-versed in their field.
Read more: PIQ rolls out new version of Level 5 certificate
The Level 5 version 2 course is split into a compulsory ‘core knowledge’ module, followed by more specialised advice strands including investment, banking, general insurance and life & health insurance.
“I know that one of the biggest challenges for financial advisers with lots of experience can be the fact that they have lots of knowledge, but the challenges is just transforming that experience into academic outcomes - but the college is well set up to support advisers through that and to give feedback along the way,” Mann said.
“To complete the qualification, you need to complete the ‘core knowledge’ module and then any one of those other advice strands. That’ll give you the certificate to meet the requirements of Code Standards 6, 7 and 8, but you may need to do more than one strand depending on your areas of advice.”
The ‘core knowledge’ module requires five assessments to be completed, and those would cover legislation, the economic environment and market participants. Mann says that advisers will be able to use client files for the required evidence assessment, but they will need to be conscious of confidentiality.
Read more: Examining the Code of Conduct's fairness standards
“The life and health insurance, general insurance and residential property lending strands have three assessments each,” Mann said.
“The advice strands are really designed around a portfolio of evidence, and the way we’ve interpreted the standards is to allow advisers to use existing client files to meet some of those required outcomes. It’s designed as a practical assessment, to allow knowledge to be demonstrated by both new and existing advisers.”
“Instead of answering a whole lot of theoretical questions, this one is more about demonstrating that knowledge in action,” she added.
“It’s not hours and hours of studying a whole lot of new concepts and answering a lot of questions. It is really quite practical, and it’s a great opportunity to use what you already know and do.”