Record roadshow attendance as planners seek support on best interest and retirement planning
According to the Financial Planning Association of Australia (FPA), the record attendance at its recent National Roadshow is a clear indication that advisers want support as they navigate the industry’s various regulatory changes and future opportunities for their business, specifically around best interest duty and retirement planning.
Almost 3,000 financial planners have registered for the 2015 National Roadshow, with two of the 33 roadshows still to take place.
The overwhelming response to the roadshows left capital city events with standing room only and saw registrations to Newcastle reaching capacity within weeks of opening.
Dante De Gori, General Manager of Policy and Conduct at the FPA, said these record attendance numbers are an indication that planners are looking for practical tools and support on how to best approach business under the current industry reforms and to safeguard their businesses for the future. He added that the current political and financial industry focus on retirement also meant that financial planners are recognising the big advice opportunity around retirement planning.
“Over the past three years, there have been various changes to the regulatory environment we operate in, which has created significant uncertainty for the financial planning community, but also presented new opportunities at the same time.
“The FoFA reforms were only settled at the end of 2014 and the best interest duty requirements remain fairly new and untested. For this reason, our roadshows this year focused on supporting planners through these changes by sharing practical guidance on how to provide high quality financial advice to their clients, in a way that meets their best interest obligations.
“This year we developed an adviser workbook as part of the roadshow, which clearly explains the requirements of the best interest duty and provides practical tips on how planners can adhere to each requirement. The workbook equips planners with specific advice processes, case studies, and analysis that they can use as professional solutions to meeting their best interest duty obligations.”
While the FPA traditionally provides planners with workbooks during roadshows, Mr De Gori said this was a unique initiative, noting also that this year’s workbook was exceptionally well received.
“Acting in the best interest of clients goes beyond a personal belief that planners are doing the right thing. It requires documented processes that clearly demonstrate that planners have truly acted in the best interest of their clients.
“The FPA is committed to supporting planners with practical tools and expert guidance that will help them put the best interest requirements into practice for various client demographics. By doing this, we are helping planners deliver good, targeted advice, which will ultimately preserve the future of the profession,” said Mr De Gori.
Mr De Gori said the National Roadshow also aimed to provide planners with the tools they need to help clients achieve their retirement goals, through tailored quality advice.
“The FPA roadshows were developed in partnership with Challenger and Zenith Investment Partners to connect planners with experts who can help them capitalise on the immense advice opportunity within the retirement space. This gave planners access to information on best practice retirement planning and how retirees’ specific requirements drive a different approach to portfolio construction.
“Member feedback on this session, and the event in its entirety has been excellent.” said Mr De Gori.
The final roadshow completes in Wollongong and Sunraysia on Tuesday, 23 June. For more information, please visit www.fpa.com.au/roadshow.