Episode 4: FPA Policy Platform [FPA Podcast]

16 July 2021

Money & Life team

Money & Life contributors draw on their diverse range of experience to present you with insights and guidance that will help you manage your financial wellbeing, achieve your lifestyle goals and plan for your financial future.

In this episode, FPA Chair, Marissa Broome, and FPA head of policy innovation and strategy, Ben Marshan, join Dante De Gori to talk about the FPA Policy Platform.

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Episode Transcript:

Dante De Gori:

Welcome to the FPA Podcast. I’m Dante De Gori the chief executive of the Financial Planning Association of Australia. In this week’s episode, I’m joined by FPA Chair, Marissa Broome, and FPA head of policy innovation and strategy, Ben Marshan. Today we’re going to talk about the FPA Policy Platform, our blueprint for the profession. I hope you enjoy this podcast

Hello everyone. Welcome Marissa and Ben to the podcast, we’re going to be talking about the FPA Policy Platform. We’ve been on the road talking to members about roadshow but perhaps just for all our listeners, can we start off with what is the policy platform, what’s the purpose of the policy platform and how did it come to be. And I’ll start off with you, Marissa, first. Just from a board perspective, what’s the concept and the idea of the policy platform?

Marissa Broome:

Thanks, Dante. Well, I guess when I joined the board the FPA had a 10 point policy platform and we were pretty successful in a time when there was less legislative change around than we’ve had at the moment, where we could proactively set agendas with stakeholders, we had a reason to go out and talk to them. And there’d been a few years since we’d achieved that, and it was very important for us now after we’ve gone through this incredible period of change, and upheaval, that we again could be proactive rather that reactive to legislative change. Again, it helps us set the conversation, set the agenda, and actually make our stakeholders aware of the really key issues that make financial planning critical to the country, but also our profession to be more sustainable in the long term.

Dante De Gori:

And what was the process of putting that policy platform together and, Ben, I’ll bring you in the conversation here, what role did you and the policy team, and of course your members play?

Ben Marshan:

Thanks, Dante. So, in terms of what we were looking at doing, from the policy team’s perspective we were thinking about what are all the big rock changes that are coming up for the profession over the next couple of years, and we thought about what kind of disruption and change that would have on the profession, how it would affect the affordability of advice we were providing to clients, how it would affect the sustainability of the profession. And so what we did with members was, have a conversation with them about those changes, about what impact that would have on their businesses, what impact that would have on their clients, and think about if we were going to come out the other side of that in a better position than what we are now, what kind of changes would need to be included in terms of implementing the royal commission, in terms of implementing the review of their life insurance framework in terms how FASEA would play out.

And so we used FPA’s community, we had a series of webinars, during roadshows we were asking questions in congress, we were asking question to members about what they saw as the future of the profession, what needed to change to make advice affordable, to make the profession sustainable going forward. So, it was a real collaborative effort between us as the policy team as facilitators and members giving us their ideas of what their pain points in their advice processes were, what sort of things they wanted to see change, what issues were affecting their clients and their businesses.

Dante De Gori:

And, Marissa, from the board’s perspective, were there particular areas that you wanted from this policy platform, what are the pain points, I suppose, you wanted to address for the profession.

Marissa Broome:

Well, I think it’s really important to recognize that it’s a board of elected financial planners, most of us are actually running our own practices. So, we were really, front and center to the pain about running a business for us. So, we were taking all of that personal experience on top of all the member feedback and, to be honest with you, we were overwhelmed with feedback. I know Ben’s team were incredibly busy with the amount of feedback we got, and so it was really important for us to actually look at the whole process of giving better advice as well as looking at the concept of how we can improve the delivery of advice, but then also how to run a business, how to run a business effectively and profitably so it is sustainable in the long term. So, we had all of that oversight really from first-hand experience.

Dante De Gori:

I think that goes to the heart, the point you made, I think in terms of having not only affordable advice but a sustainable profession, so we want the practice of financial planning to be a sustainable profession for people to enter in the profession at the moment. So, Ben, just in terms of those 19 recommendations, there were five key areas and that those recommendations have been tagged into. If we talk about regulation to start with, and I’ll get you both in this conversation, but regulation seems to be the bane of everyone’s existence, right? And in terms of the fact that there’s a lot of fault or blame attributed to regulation in terms of compliance, in terms of the cost, et cetera. Now, we all agree that regulation is an area that need to be looked at and we have some specific recommendations here, but do you want to talk a little bit about what are we trying to do in the regulation space?

Marissa Broome:

I think I have to ask Ben about how many regulators do we have, I think every time we speak it’s eight, it’s nine, it’s whatever. My key issue about regulation in not that we don’t need a level of regulation we need consistent regulation, and every single regulator has a different perspective on how we’re to be regulated and what the rules are, and what our code of ethics are from the regulator. And it’s just really confusing.

Dante De Gori:

It’s a good point, it’s not about saying, “We don’t want regulation.” It’s about having effective regulation. And so, Ben, the number of regulators, how many do we have and where are we at from that as a particular measure?

Ben Marshan:

Well, as of today we’re at nine but I guess one of the good things that’s coming through with the creation of the single disciplinary body is that effectively two of those regulators should be removed, and we’ll see a more consolidated outcome in terms of creating a single registration process, a single set of professional standards with a single disciplinary body. So, we’ve got nine at the moment, what we’ll see with the single disciplinary body is the influence of the TPB and registrations TPB will be removed, we’re obviously seeing FASEA wound down, and everything else will more or less be consolidated at ASIC. And the benefit of that and then the Minister setting the professional standards for financial planners who will be in a much better position to say, “The primary regulator or financial advice is ASIC, the primary setter of standards for financial advice is effectively the parliament, and we can get to a position where we’ve got a good consolidated single set of professional standards out of this big change that’s happening at the moment that we’re working on.”

Dante De Gori:

And, Marissa, both as a practitioner and also a AFS holder, do you feel like we can get to the point where we actually do have a single set of standards, or at least interpretation of those standards?

Marissa Broome:

Well, I think we’re very much on the pathway of that happening. I mean, as an FPA member I’ve had a set of standards that have been far higher than the law that I’ve subscribed to for a long, long time, but the broader market hasn’t had any standards at all. So, our members are probably better positioned to actually follow this through, because our standards have always been higher. But it’s that extra complexity of that different interpretation and I do think we’re on the right path now. I do think particularly this current minister is very in tune with what our needs are, both from a legislative point of view but also from a stakeholder point of view. ASIC of both critically aware that there’s not going to be enough advisors out there. And so we certainly need to see more financial planners, and having this single approach is going to be much appreciated and very much are going to address those issues of keeping people in the profession.

Dante De Gori:

Very much a critical pillar, I think, of the policy platform is the regulation. So, we’ll move on to the second pillar which is consumer protection. There’s a few elements here that tackle general advice, the protection of terms, and also the wholesale investor piece. Just a comment from you, Marissa, this is really important for us from the FPA’s position in acting in the public interest here. How do you feel and what are the key areas there for you that we need to really further progress?

Marissa Broome:

Well, first of all, general advice is not general advice, it’s not advice at all it’s information. And I think that whole name, even though ASIC recently came out and said that the consumer doesn’t see a difference, we know that if they are sitting in front of someone and getting information, they see it as advice. So, we’ve really got to clean that up because the media are only going to look at a bad financial planner, they’re not actually going to care whether they’re given a personal advice license or a general advice license, so that’s really important to me. And I’m I also know a lot of my peers are using that investor, or that wholesale carve out as a way of making cost more affordable to their clients and actually being able to transact more easily. I understand that completely, but I think that can be addressed very clearly through scoping advice more effectively, and that we should actually think of the fact that just because the consumer has lots of zeros in their bank account, it doesn’t mean that they’ve got the financial capability and the financial literacy to deal with some of the advice pieces.

And we need to actually put ourselves in the client’s shoes and understand what’s there. So, if we can help in terms of that scoping piece than I think we can actually have some better approaches from clients who have only got maybe small amounts of wealth creation all the way through to the very wealthy.

Dante De Gori:

And, Ben, obviously we have the terms financial planner protected in law, that’s something that’s already in place, but what do we need more to happen in respect to ensuring that it’s not just something thats in writing but is actually enforced?

Ben Marshan:

I was just at the Sydney Roadshow recently and the main topic of conversation that members were coming up and speaking to me about was, “I’ve seen this person providing these types of recommendations and they’re not licensed,” or, “This person’s this property thing or that investment thing, and how do they get away with it? How are consumers not protected?” And I think a lot of it is about, yes the protections are in place, how do we make consumers better aware of the restricted terms? How do we make the regulator more aware of some of the activities that are happening out there that are definitely financial advice but aren’t being picked up and consumers aren’t being properly protected by the laws and the protections that are sitting there at the moment. So, it was a great first step but is it actually going far enough? That’s where there’s the tie in with general advice, there’s the tie in with sophisticated invested definition, and there’s a general need to better educate consumers, better educate regulators, better embed the whole restriction so that consumer can know that if somebody is saying, “Buy this financial investment,” it’s because they are a financial planner and they’ve considered their goals and objectives, and financial position, and provided that recommendation in their best interest.

Marissa Broome:

And I guess I’ll just carry on with another point in this, and that we didn’t really address this in a full way we addressed it partially in terms of separation of product and advice in our next section. But, really, with the review that’s happening under the Law Reform Commission, the review of chapter seven, I think that’s going to be really critical by how this pillar and the next pillar sort themselves out, because really 90% of what I do I don’t need a license for. It’s actually when I talk about product I need to be licensed, so that’s the fundamental problem with chapter seven.

Dante De Gori:

I think let’s get into that, and our next pillar here is the licensing regime. And in particular I think, I know this is something you’re very passionate about, Marissa, in terms of chapter seven. And one option is just to throw it out, obviously, and start again but… And then that could be a possibility, the Australian Law Reform Commission I think has the opportunity to really look at this and wouldn’t be surprised but, of course, that we do need something there. So, what are some of the key elements for you? I think you mentioned separation of product and advice. Again, so you think that is something that we will achieve, do you think it’s a fundamental must have in order for us to progress?

Marissa Broome:

I think the alternative is just to continue to bandaid on bits of legislation, which is why chapter seven could go around the world three times and still have paper left over. I really think we need to get to that and there certainly seems to be appetite for that to happen. From the leading academics in the space, talking about people like Pamela Hanrahan who have all called out and said, “We really need to look at chapter seven, from a product piece, from an advice piece. It really needs to be reviewed because it’s 20 years old, it’s time to review that.” But certainly we are now a profession, emerging a profession but a profession, and therefore we really need to be recognized for that so that the whole advice piece is captured rather than just simply link back to product.

Dante De Gori:

And you talked about when you run your own licenses rather not, the FPS received a lot of publicity about our platform in respect to the licensing regime. You run your own license, you’re also a practitioner, I mean, where do you see the advantage of the review and the licensing regime for you and your business? What are the pain points that you see as saying, “Well, I’m here as a practitioner and these are the things I want to do.”? And I think part of that is the product, the advice piece. Part of that also might be the disclosure and the compliance. There’s anything you want to see change in that side of the regime?

Marissa Broome:

I think at the moment that we’ve got, I don’t have this in my business because I am self licensed and we are in very small practice, so it’s much easier for me, but I think certainly people in larger licensees are seeing an overreach of the compliance phase. So, the law might say one thing and the AFSL holder has actually taken it to a whole other level, and that’s causing enormous amount of pain in my peers. I try and see compliance as a marketing opportunity so that we follow all these rules for all these reasons, I know it does cost their business a lot of money to do it that way. And I just don’t think that that’s sustainable in the long term, I basically have two people that spend their entire life in my practice doing the compliance part of us holding an AFSL. And how much better would it be if they could spend all that times actually focusing on the client experience and not the compliance experience?

Dante De Gori:

Ben, one of the things that one of our key pillars is it’s individual registration, so we want to… And this is something that is coming out even by name, in respect of the single disciplinary body in terms of registration. So, at the moment the single disciplinary body legislation is requiring advisors to register with the single disciplinary body, talk to us a bit about that in terms of what’s the nuance there for us in terms of what we want out of that. And by definition, by having that system, do we actually have the single registration system in place?

Ben Marshan:

No we won’t have a single registration system effectively. We don’t know how this registration process is going to work with the single disciplinary body yet, there was one model proposed in the draft legislation. There are a number of other models that have been proposed through the consultation and we’ll just need to see where government lands in terms of how they implement it, but the point being that, as you said, through the single disciplinary body system financial planners are going to have to individually register, be registered with that single disciplinary body. The process that was proposed by government was that the individual planner would collect all the information, they would provide all that information to their licensee, and then the licensee would submit that registration for them.

We feel that if the planner is providing all the information anyway, they may as well just do the registration, and that brings us better into alignment with other professions. Doctors individually register with the Medical Registration Board, lawyers individually register with their court in their state, accountants individually register with the Tax Practitioners Board to be tax agents. And so, to be a proper profession there has to be a registration process of the individual, where they declare that they’ve met the education requirements, the experience requirements, and that they fit and proper on an ongoing basis as that registration happens. Where we’re probably short at the moment is, there’s still some elements of the TPB sitting in the framework, there are still some elements of the licensee being required to submit certain information to ASIC, and the single disciplinary body. And then we’ve still got the authorization process that still has to happen with licensees.

This is a journey, this will take a couple of years, probably, to work its way out, and licensees play a critical role in the provision of financial advice at the moment and provide a really important support mechanisms and support tool for planners. They make sure that they’ve got all the tools and resources, they’ve got all the training they need, they’ve got all the technology support they need, they’ve got audits and reviews, and complaints, and PI mechanisms in place, and these are really important consumer protections that we think Is and Cs are well placed to be providing at the moment. But we just want to see the individual financial planner have some individual accountability to that disciplinary body and that regulator, and have that individual registration process that they started to look after by themselves.

Dante De Gori:

And it’s a good point you raised there, and I think there is a critical role, and I think in a lot of the media hype around our platform there’s this assumption that financial services businesses aren’t needed any more, licensees aren’t needed. But, in your mind, I mean, those elements of support services and tools and resources, are they going to go away in a single registration system?

Marissa Broome:

No, and I think you’re critical, as you said, let’s… I keep using the example of doctors, a doctor can put up a shingle by themselves, they can be part of a medical center, they can work in a hospital, they can specialize in a particular area, and that’s no different to what we can do in the financial planning space. We can choose to be a single practitioner but we might buy services from a number of different commercial bodies, whether that be an AFSL, or whether it be through any other private provider, that’s their call on how they do that, that’s a commercial decision. What we’re trying to do is separate the individual responsibility about giving the advice and being professional, to the commercial services you need to deliver that advice.

Dante De Gori:

One of those areas about the individual is about their ability to be identified as a financial planner. And so you mentioned the doctors and in terms of the choices, and then mentioned they’ve got to register with the Medical Board. They go and work for a hospital as a doctor, the hospital doesn’t actually make them a doctor. So, the other key area here is, and I know this is a role that you play as a licensee, is that you actually have the obligation and responsibility to ensure that any advisors in your business are actually qualified, trained, and you hold the responsibility to ensure they continue their education. Do you think it’s time that that’s separated out and that responsibility is held to the individual, and is independent of the-

Marissa Broome:

Very much so, I really genuinely believe that. That’s all about taking individual responsibility for the advice you deliver to making sure that you’re confident and capable. That’s the mark of true professionalism.

Dante De Gori:

I think for us that’s a key element of this particular platform and pillar of the policy platform. And just finally here as well, just to touch on, there’s a couple of areas that we continue to work on, and we have in the platform, is both tax and Centrelink access in respect for our members in dealing with the ATO. So, we’ve talked about on the roadshow about ATO portal access, but of course the other one that is one that continues to be a bugbear for a lot of our members is the relationship with Centrelink. And so they’re two key areas in which we want to progress our status there and I think what we’re talking about here, Ben, is some sort of agent status with those two respective bodies, is that right?

Ben Marshan:

The ATO portal access effectively is what everybody’s been asking for and would be the ability to see our clients’ contributions to their superannuation funds, be able to help them with notifications that come in around their superannuation. So, that one’s reasonably straightforward, there have been some delays in that because the ATO didn’t actually have the systems and abilities to allow financial planners to be added on to their clients against their tax file number as a tax agent, but those system limitations have now been implemented in such a way that that can now happen. So, now we need to work with the Tax Practitioners Board to try and find a solution there. In terms of Centrelink, there are some members who have access to certain aspects of the Centrelink system, there’s some services they can do themselves but I think what we’d ultimately like to get to in terms of Centrelink is an ability for a financial planner to help their clients assess their Centrelink benefits that they may be able to receive, and submit paperwork on their behalf, and have Centrelink accept that, and effectively the financial planner acts as an agent for the client in terms of their interaction with Centrelink. And I think that would save a lot of time, money and effort for Centrelink and would be a valuable benefit that our members could start providing to their clients.

Dante De Gori:

Excellent. All right, now, the last two pillars are sort of co-related, but they also have their own specific outcomes as well, but technology and costs of financial advice are the last two pillars. So, specifically on technology, I think we talk a lot about technology and it’s talked about a lot in many of the PD days and conferences, but specifically in our platform here, Ben, just explain this issue about access to data which I think is… So, let’s just drill down a little bit here in terms of what we mean by that and how that would help our members and the clients they serve.

Ben Marshan:

So there’s this great new requirement that’s going to be put on all financial services providers, telecommunication companies, power companies, and a variety of other services that consumers use, called the consumer data right. And the idea behind it was the government was going to allow consumers to better compare different services and different products that they are purchasing, and allow them to swap more easily. But the brilliant thing it does is allows our clients to provide us with an authorization to access their financial data, and have that effectively sucked live, in real time, into our systems, and be maintained in an ongoing way within our systems. And so, when you think about the data collection process often taking two to three hours in terms of reviews, it takes up a lot of time in our review process. If our clients are able to say, “I give you permission to access my financial data.” All of that can be brought in, in real time into our financial planning software, we won’t need to ask questions, we won’t need to follow up, we’ll just have that data there.

And that’s amazing for two reasons. Number one is, it’s going to save a lot of time and costs, and we’re going to be able to rely on the information we’ve got because it’s coming straight from our clients bank accounts and superannuation funds, and insurance providers. But, secondly, it also will enable us to proactively support our clients in that if we see our client’s financial position is not on track compared to the position we set out in the financial plan, because they’ve spent too much particular period or because maybe they’ve lost their job and they haven’t told us about it, or maybe they’re not doing quite so well this quarter. We can actually reach out to them and have a proactive conversation with them about the fact that they’re not actually on track to meet their financial plan, and what can we do to support them.

On the other hand if things are going really well for the client, we can see that they’re ahead and we can proactively reach out to them and say, “Look, you are going really well.” Maybe it’s because they’ve earned more money or they’ve received inheritance, or the markets are going really well, and we can start to have conversations about, “Well, you know that thing that we said that maybe you can’t do because you had to trade off and make a decision to do something else, you can now afford to do that.” And so you can have these live real time conversations with your clients, and I think that is an amazing opportunity that comes from the consumer data right. And so, in terms of policy platform it’s how do we make that consumer data right as open and as accessible to our members, so they can take advantage of these amazing opportunities.

Dante De Gori:

And real time financial planning, really, it sounds like. And also in there we have obviously SOAs and digitalizing the SOA process and making that more accessible. I think they go hand-in-hand in terms of the data we have, financial plan, and making sure that it is a document that isn’t put in the bottom drawer it’s something that’s living and breathing.

Ben Marshan:

That’s absolutely right. I think there’s no point having live data coming from your client if you then print it off into onto a ream of paper, because that becomes very old and stale almost as soon as you hit the print button. So, what we are working on there is to try and encourage effectively ASIC to give everyone comfort that they can produce electronic, digital statements of advice. Statements of advice can be created much more effectively much more efficiently in a much more engaging way for clients, similar to what we talked about in the future of the SLA report that we did about 18 months ago. And try and make that a reality in terms of what regulators will accept, what licensees will allow to deliver and what better outcomes for clients.

And then on the other side of things, electronic transactions. So, how can we get the product manufacturers to accept electronic authorizations, electronic signatures, digital signatures from our clients as a way to accept transactions, authorizations, collection of information, from our clients directly into the products to make that whole implementation part of the advice a lot more efficient and effective and affordable as well.

Marissa Broome:

I’m just going to add on to that. So, I think that there’s incredible efficiencies that can happen within a practice and the delivery of advice, but, for me, I see the real advantage is actually making the SOA a strategic document instead of just a collection of information document, and it actually can be alive. And then, secondly, and probably I think the most difficult of the standards in the FASEA code of ethics is actually to prove informed consent. And if we’ve got a much smarter strategic document that’s delivered, that actually the client understands, you can prove on the way through they’ve understand the advice before you even get to implementation stage, then we’ve proven that really key point of the code of ethics. So, there’s no doubt there’s enormous efficiencies technology but there’s also some really good client benefits.

Dante De Gori:

Yes, and that brings me into sort of a final pillar which is the costs, and which basically is the number one pain point that I think everyone… All these other elements we talked about attributed to this one issue, which is the cost to run my business, the cost to serve my client. And there’ll be question marks about whether, as we said at the start, some practices, some businesses are sustainable. So, what in particular can we do, I mean, technology will help obviously reduce inefficiencies and help drive down costs to some extent, but it’s not the only thing. What else can we do here and what have we outlined as some of those elements and what is the ones that we want to retackle, around costs of financial loss?

Marissa Broome:

If we have to do something about cost, at the moment financial planning advice is for rich people, and it shouldn’t be like that it should be for anyone who wants it, regardless of their situation and they should be able to access advice, whether it be one-off or ongoing advice. They need to be able to access it, and at the moment it’s not available for a lot of people. So, I’m actually going to turn the question back on you because your actual key focus is in this area, Dante.

Dante De Gori:

I think, it takes off the ability of advice is one of those statements or policy positions that people talk about and have talked about for a long time, so it’s not a secret, it’s not new. And many people who are listening to the podcast here will have heard us talk about it before but it’s, again, a key pillar of our platform for the future. And along with the other aspects of what we want to change, it’s an area that we think is has to be included as well, takes off the ability of advice and that’s a project that we’re looking to progress more proactively, in terms of trying to achieve that as well. So, we hope to be able to say more about that in due course but we haven’t just written down on a piece of paper and said, “That’s what we want to achieve.” We actually have progressed some work in that space and we’re pretty excited about the potential there.

But I think, as I mentioned, it all comes back to what Marissa said, which is really choice, and one of the things that we’ve talked about is ability for consumers to buy the advice you want. And I think at the end of the day it’s about choice for both consumers, but it’s also a choice for our members to be able to put together and run the type of business they want to run and also provide the advices, services that they want to. So, it’s all about choices, isn’t it. And then we’ve had some wins there as well, haven’t we, in this space regarding about even the fact that consumers should have the right to choose how they want to pay their advice fees, and where from.

Ben Marshan:

That’s right, so one of the Royal Commission proposals was that access to paying for advice out of superannuation should be significantly restricted as part of that Royal Commission implementation process and one of the things that we argued very successfully, for example, was that MySuper is not a different product it is just an investment option within superannuation. And so the government in implementing the Royal Commission recommendation, which was meant to say that no advice fees should be collected through MySuper products, got tempered to be, “You can collect one-off advice fees through MySuper products.”

And so, we’ve being able to advocate that consumers should be able to access and pay for advice in any way they choose, as long as it meets whatever the laws are, and the restrictions, that might be otherwise in place for those types of products. So, in terms of superannuation, the advice is about superannuation and therefore it meets the sole purpose test. Therefore you can collect the fees from the superannuation products, in terms of life insurance that the life insurance framework is in place, but as long as you comply with that then collecting fees through life insurance products is allowed and acceptable. And then, for any other type of investment that you can negotiate with the client and get the client to agree  how they want to pay for the advice, and so we’ve had a great outcome in terms of being able to ensure that clients are able to pay for the advice they want, and pay for it and the way that they want to be able to pay for it.

Dante De Gori:

Excellent. And, look, as I said, there are 19 recommendations across our policy platform. We definitely encourage all members to go into the member center and get a copy of the platform, encourage you to make sure you’re across it as much as you can, and the FPA will continue to update and continue to provide information to members about how we’re tracking on a number of these. The current issue that we’re dealing with a moment is the single disciplinary body in respect to single registration, as an example. But many of these elements are happening concurrently and some sort to be started, and we progress this plan over the next five years. Just in closing, any final comments from either of you?

Marissa Broome:

No, I’m glad you just said the five year thing because this is designed to be a proactive five year plan. I guess we didn’t start with that, we probably should have started at that point. We understand the regulatory burden that we’re all under at the moment is enormous, we didn’t want to just add to it, but we knew that the stakeholders were going down a path of addressing some of these issues and we wanted to come out proactively and say, “Let’s do it this way,” or, “How about this is as a suggestion.” So, it’s a five year proactive plan that we’re hoping to follow.

Dante De Gori:

And, Ben, any final comments from you?

Ben Marshan:

No, I would just echo those points but I think it’s important for members to understand how we as the policy team use this guide. So, effectively, when any consultation comes in we think about whether or not it touches on any of these 19 recommendations, and whether or not we can use that as the framework for responding to any consultation that comes through. So, in terms of the single disciplinary body legislation that we saw recently, we’re able to tick off five these recommendations with our response back to say, “We’ve talked to members, we’ve talked to the profession more broadly, and we think that these are the elements of a single disciplinary body that will progress the profession forwards.” So, we use this platform on a daily basis, if you have a look at any submissions that we’re doing you’ll see that we refer back to the policy platform in most of them, because this is effectively the blueprint for what the future of financial planning should look like in the views of the member in the views of the board, and therefore this is effectively our toolkit for saying, “This is how we think this particular element should fit into the future of the profession, and this is our members views on how that should work.”

And what you’ll see, if you’ve attended roadshow, or you have a look at the roadshow presentations and material after roadshow’s finished is that we started to map out the elements that we’ve started to work on. And you’ll see that all but three of them, we’ve really started to make some really good progress on through the fact that we’re using this policy platform as an element of every submission we’re making. So, yes it’s a five year plan and it will probably take five years to get there for all of them, but there’s a lot of good progress that we’re making at the moment and we’ll probably see a lot more of them ticked off over the next couple months.

Dante De Gori:

Excellent, thank you Ben. And thank you all for joining in and listening in today’s session and podcast, I think you’ll agree that it’s great to start talking about, and to be able to talk about proactive elements and future looking in terms of where we want the profession to go. And, as Marissa mentioned, it is a five year plan but it does present a blueprint for the future of the profession, and we hope that you better understand the platform now. And, as I’ve mentioned before, please encourage you to have a read of it yourself, and also to engage on FPA community for any discussion. We welcome absolutely discussion and debate on any of the recommendations and even the pillars, because we still need to build out many of this in detail, We’d welcome your input. So, on that note, thank you to my guests, Ben and Marissa, appreciate it, for tuning in today and look forward to talking to you all next time.

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