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Thinking about outsourcing your paraplanning? Read this first

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Outsourced paraplanning

As a self-employed financial adviser, you probably feel pulled in a number of different directions. But if you’re going to spend time in front of your clients and continue to win new business, you can’t do it all. With the role of the financial adviser moving from transactional to consultancy-based, it’s no wonder that there’s been a rise in demand for paraplanners in recent years. The role of the paraplanner is essential to financial advisers, and since the Retail Distribution Review, paraplanning is now a career in its own right. Advisers today rely on paraplanners to assist them with everything from research to financial plans and report writing, freeing up the adviser’s time to focus on client retention and new client acquisition. But when it comes to paraplanning, what’s the best option – in-house or outsourced paraplanning?

Outsourcing versus in-house

It can be tempting to outsource your paraplanning. There are, of course, a number of benefits to outsourced paraplanning, such as saving time and minimising costs, not to mention one of the most popular reasons that people outsource their paraplanning: flexibility. When you outsource, you only pay for what you need, when you need it, as opposed to the constant cost of employing a paraplanner.

Outsourced paraplanners also benefit from the wealth of experience that comes hand in hand with working with a variety of clients for a range of different firms, meaning they will be able to bring specialist knowledge to the table. However, despite all this, 88% of advisers don’t outsource their paraplanning and less than 1% would consider doing so in the future. But why?

The problem with outsourcing

For many advisers, there are some concerns surrounding outsourced paraplanning. For starters, you won’t have the same relationship you would with an in-house paraplanner – and it can be difficult to trust your life’s work with someone you don’t really know. There can also sometimes be complicated legal and contractual issues surrounding sharing and protecting customer data. And additionally, by outsourcing your paraplanning, you are technically relying on a third party to produce your work – so if your paraplanner falls behind they are much harder to manage than an in-house employee, resulting in a lack of control.

The benefits of in-house

But instead of looking at the negatives of outsourced paraplanning, perhaps it’s better to look at the positives of hiring an in-house paraplanner. The benefits of employing a paraplanner speak for themselves: for instance, there’s reduced risk, increased communication and stronger relationships. An in-house paraplanner can take total ownership of the advice process, taking care of research and analysis, as well as liaising with providers, sitting in on clients meetings, cash flow modelling, liaising with trustees and solicitors, tax planning with accountants and formulating advice. They also provide a sounding board for the team to bounce ideas off and can provide support to clients when the adviser isn’t available.

From the client’s perspective, whilst the technical ability to write a good report is important, that’s not why people choose their adviser. Financial advice is all about relationships. Clients want to be completely understood and feel that their advisers provide bespoke advice that can help them reach their goals. Such a holistic approach to advice requires a team effort – and the paraplanner is an essential part of this team. In-house paraplanners can attend meetings and build relationships with both the client and the adviser, ensuring the adviser can offer exceptional advice and provide a personal touch. By immersing the paraplanners in the advice process, you can ensure they truly understand the client, adding real value to the advice process rather than just generating a report. Finally, from a compliance perspective, in-house paraplanners can also monitor everything that is said and done.  

The Foster Denovo paraplanning service

At Foster Denovo, you can have the best of both worlds. Because you can choose the level of paraplanning support you need, you’ll enjoy all the benefits of outsourced paraplanning whilst working with a dedicated, in-house team. This means you can benefit from the expert knowledge of Foster Denovo’s entire team of paraplanners, and because of Foster Denovo’s company culture, you will still have strong relationships with each individual team member.

The benefits 

Foster Denovo’s centralised paraplanning team is there to assist you in conducting research and writing suitability reports, as well as helping with technical consultation, in-depth analysis and strategy reports. They can also help with front-line compliance thanks to a robust file and regular consultation on any risks you might need to consider. You’ll also have access to:

  • suitability report templates; 
  • a ‘common pitfalls’ document to reduce the number of easily made mistakes; 
  • checklists to help improve suitability reports;
  • a straightforward assessing suitability form to understand clients’ attitude to risk, ability to understand advice and capacity for loss;
  • evidencing research checklist; and
  • pre-approval checklist.

If you need more support, Foster Denovo’s Private Client Services is a central support service, whereby a team of Client Experience Executives will take care of the administration and servicing of clients, allowing Partners to spend more time with their clients. You can choose the level of support you need, including services such as:

  • client administration and research;
  • report writing and servicing;
  • preparation of documents for client meetings, including pre-filled applications and forms;
  • management of cases to paraplanning, liaising with providers to obtain policy and research information;
  • annual review preparation including cash flow forecasting and a professional client valuation pack;
  • an efficient and personalised process offering a dedicated point of contact for Partners; and
  • regular communication to the client and Partner, providing updates on their cases.

Foster Denovo’s Head of Partnership Support, Neil Wortham, also works with Foster Denovo Partners to provide a help desk service where they can discuss potential cases. Working on the principle that ‘two heads are better than one’, Neil challenges Partners to help them explore advice opportunities and pre-empt any compliance procedures that need to be followed.

About Foster Denovo

Foster Denovo is a multi-award-winning firm which partners with self-employed financial advisers to deliver top quality advice to clients across the country. With over 80 Partners and 200 employees, they’re small enough to be flexible yet big enough to make a real impact on the industry. At Foster Denovo, you will be surrounded by a strong team of knowledgeable people who can help you, whilst their unique training and mentorship programme, ‘Quantum Leap’, also offers support and guidance to all their Partners to ensure they can get to where they want to be.

In addition to the Quantum Leap programme, Foster Denovo also runs a number of other training programmes for Partners, as well as ongoing mentoring and support from Equity Partners. Partnering with a reliable advisory company also has the benefit of taking away all the extra work involved in financial advice. Because they can take care of all the behind-the-scenes stuff such as compliance and IT, it means you can focus solely on your clients and getting out there and building relationships. 

Want to find out more?

Contact Recruit UK today to find out more about the opportunities we are currently working on with Foster Denovo.

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Escalated Complaints
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Achieve your career goals

Once you have the knowledge, soft skills, practical skills, and qualifications needed for pursuing a career in Financial Planning, we will provide you with guidance toward a suitable path to follow to achieve your career goals.
You can confidently apply for job opportunities with a high-quality CV knowing exactly where you sit within the market with inside intel about salary expectations, buzzwords for specific leading firms and referrals from experts you will meet along the way. You will also have the opportunity to utilize the Financial Planner Life recruitment services, giving you further specialized advice and putting you forward for roles which align with your intrinsic values and career goals.
Don’t put it on hold, join the community today and discover your potential.

Discover your path.

We understand that there isn’t a one size fits all approach to a career in financial planning, which is why we are here to make sure that you’re taking the right route into the profession.
We’ve calmed the process down so you can stay within your current company, start studying towards your qualifications and begin to get a real understanding of what the landscape of financial planning looks like in respect of your career.
Whether you have aspirations of being an employed adviser, running your own business or doing a more back-office focused role such as compliance, we can help guide and support you down the right path, matching your experience, your network and your intrinsic values.

Uncover your potential.

It starts with taking your qualifications and what we do within the community is support you to pass your qualifications first time. The Financial Planner Life community is all about supporting people’s different learning styles and taking into consideration life’s commitments such as finances, family and existing employment.
We believe in offering a personalised learning experience, which is why our program includes study support for industry-recognised exams. Our aim is to ensure that you are well-prepared to pass exams such as the CII-regulated diploma in financial advice, the CII Certificate in Mortgage Advice and the CII Certificate in Paraplanning.
Train to become a financial planner with the use of online resources, networking within the community with well-established professionals as well as frequent webinars and Q&As with Sam Oakes and industry-leading professional guests.
[Download the full academy prospectus here]

Connect with the Community

Welcome to the Financial Planner Life Academy where well-being, honesty and transparency are at the heart of what we do.
We’re here to support you on your journey into a career within the financial planning profession. Whether that’s administration, paraplanning, financial advice or even mortgage advice. Our expert trainers and community will support and educate you and train you to A, pass your qualifications and B, make the right decision about your first employment in the financial planning profession.
It could be going down the route of being restricted, or becoming an IFA, you may even have aspirations of running your own business! But what does that look like?
We understand that from the outside looking in, it can be daunting to find the correct route into the profession to become a financial planner. The Financial Planner Life Academy is completely independent, allowing you to connect with hundreds of financial planning professionals with different backgrounds, at all levels of experience.
You will learn all about the different options you can take, mentored by a diverse mix of professionals so you are equipped with the essential toolkit to be able to make an informed decision about your career path within financial planning.

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