We are big believers that having good support in place is key to running a successful advisory firm. Getting quality reports turned around and out the door faster than you could do single-handedly, not only helps grow your business, but it means you get to spend more time doing what you do best – seeing clients.

Let’s face it, good Paraplanners are hard to find (we know better than most). Outsourcing your paraplanning support is a wonderful solution to many – especially those who are struggling to find qualified and experienced paraplanner(s) or those who don’t warrant a full-time member of staff. Not to mention the savings on overheads and training resource.

It’s so flexible we’re convinced that it can work for everyone; we can simply fit ourselves into your existing processes and liaise with you like another member of your team with no need to clear a desk for us.

We put a tremendous amount of nurturing into our team, enabling them to be the best paraplanners they can possibly be – therefore we are confident in knowing that the support we offer is of world class quality, it’s one of our main values as a business.

So, how does it work?

We provide you with compliant, quality and client friendly reports that can be personalised to your firm’s brand – logos, colour palettes and preferred fonts – as well as any bits of extra content you may require. Download a sample report here and see for yourself. And if that’s not enough to excite you – our turnaround time is 5 working days from receipt of all information.

Hate speaking to providers?

No problem. Our dedicated Technical Research Team spring into action from the point of sending LOA’s. They are experts in collating all the information needed on existing policies. This is then seamlessly handed over to our team of Paraplanners who provide you with research, cash flow modelling and report writing – there’s no advice area we can’t cover. Find out more about the full team here.

The tech.

Using our bespoke online software, Rise, sharing cases with us is as simple as logging in and entering a few key details about your case requirements. You can have a number of user accounts (at no extra cost) meaning you and your colleagues have full transparency of what stage your case is at, in live time. The system of course is fully secure and GDPR compliant too. Click here to book a demo of the system.

If you still aren’t convinced that we’re the right fit for you – contact Kim, our dedicated Director of Client Relations, who is on hand to give you any further information you require.

2018 was another fantastic year for Para-Sols – you may remember us highlighting some of our favourite moments in our 9th birthday blog, if not, you can remind yourself here.

Entering 2019 as a strong team of 31, across both Para-Sols and Apricity, we are more than ready for the year to come and all of the amazing possibilities that lie ahead.

We can’t go into too much detail regarding our future plans (as it’s all top secret right now!), but what we can say is that 2019 is looking to be one of our most exciting years yet, so watch this space…

So, with that in mind, we thought a good place to start this New Year would be to take a look at what’s to come in the world of financial services – whilst preparing you for any future changes.

Below you’ll find thoughts on current hot topics and upcoming news that we think you should be aware of, from our Founder & Director, Cathi.

Defined benefits

Inevitably, there is much more to come on this. The findings published by the FCA in December 2018 are likely to have caused more questions to be raised, the PI market is in disarray and there is almost certainly more change coming there, plus a review of TVC / APTA and whether they are working as intended is still needed.

SFGB 

You may have seen the releases on this last week as the new Single Financial Guidance Body officially launched – albeit it hasn’t yet been officially named, and needs this and a brand applying. I don’t have a huge amount of positive things to say on the SFGB, and the cash drain it is shaping up to be, so other than to note its arrival, and to be aware of it for your clients, let’s move swiftly on….

New FOS limits 

The FCA proposals to increase the FOS complaint limit from £150,000 to £350,000 are pencilled in for this year. There are pros and cons to this; having witnessed a case where the client and their retirement were severely impacted by the lower limit, I can see the benefit of a higher one. However, the impact on advisers, and their PI costs, particularly in the context of all the other change this year, mean it is unlikely to be as welcomed with open arms as it might have been, had the FCA chosen a more opportune moment to consult on this.

Brexit

The absolute long and short of it is that no one knows what the hell is happening, or going to happen, with this – other than something will happen, and it will be this year. The FCA has been quite proactive in consulting on Brexit, and creating proposals for transitional protections that will make ongoing operations for UK authorised firms relatively straightforward, in theory. And GDPR will have helped the majority of firms get into a position regarding data to smoothly transition to any new rules.

RDR and FAMR review 

Initially pencilled in for next year, the RDR review has been brought forward to coincide with a FAMR review, and will include an analysis on the ‘cost of advice’ by the FCA. No doubt a bit more tinkering will be seen post review.

SM&CR

Already underway, it is anticipated that the Senior Managers & Certification Regime will be rolled out to the remaining firms by December 2019, and this will cover the majority of IFAs, so one to be preparing for.

And this is just the stuff already planned in… there will no doubt be a few surprises along the way to keep us all on our toes!

“The only way to make sense out of change is to plunge into it, move with it, and join the dance.” (Alan Watts)

This saying has particular resonance to the financial sector in 2019. We’re currently facing a time of unprecedented change, a landscape of uncertainty, changes to regulation and Brexit looming – all of which are causing speculation and more questions than answers as to how these changes will affect us.

Para-Sols very own, Jo Campbell, Director of Operations and Quality, was recently asked to give her professional partner insight to Investment Week’s recent video article: ‘What are the challenges facing financial advisers in 2019?’

Along with several financial advisers, Jo outlined her experience of the changing regulatory landscape and market volatility and how they might affect financial advisers over the coming year. Jo discussed how implementing regulatory changes such as MiFID II and GDPR has not been an easy process and has created challenges as a result of poor communication – causing advisers to be overwhelmed with lots of additional pressures. Other partner advisers also described similar experiences to these changes, agreeing that there has been a lack of clear communication, which has affected the way in which advisers can support their clients.

At Para-Sols we strive to meet these ever-changing needs by finding new ways to allow our clients to provide quality advice – for example, we recently launched a bespoke Annual Suitability Report option to cover the requirements outline as part of MIFID II.

With unknown market changes ahead of us, 2019 will inevitably cause disruption and concern for some clients, but it is also changing the way in which advice is being delivered by advisers to the client. “Everybody is now doing more cash flow, financial planning and ‘holistic planning’ – and that can only be good for the client.”

To find out more and to watch the full video click here.