Our Consumer Duties Improvements for 2023

Published / Last Updated on 24/02/2023

Many of you will have read about new Financial Conduct Authority ‘Consumer Duties’ rules.  This is to do with making sure all financial services firms put their clients first be that welfare, best products, good servicing response times, client before profit etc.  For too long many firms treat their clients as a ‘cash cow’ for profit.

Even today, why is it that you can telephone for a new quote and get it in seconds yet if you have a problem and want to ask questions or make changes to existing policies, you are held in a queue for a long time and then told that department does not take calls?  Many firms also charge huge ongoing fees but do not do enough ongoing work/admin for you to justify those fees and charges.

This has never been the case at Roberts Clark (IFA and owner of this website).  Clients always come first.  We work 7 days a week to look after clients.  We have always been clear and fair about our fees and how they are calculated and are not hidden.  When you telephone us, all calls are answered during office hours within 3 rings.  We even have a picture on the wall that says: “Customer Care – Let’s take care and protect our clients or somebody else will.”

Watch: Our Approach to Consumer Duties: Consumer Duties

What is FinancialAdvice.net/Roberts Clark IFS Limited doing in 2023 to improve our already robust approach of putting clients first and FCA consumer duties?

Back Office Consumer Duties 2023:  Joanne Roberts-Clark (Managing Director Roberts Clark) and her team are continually looking for ways to make our advice process simpler, quicker and reports easier to read.  This can be hard given the complex nature of finance and tax sometimes yet still trying to explain it in plain English for you.  Her and the team have a huge list of even more admin/service improvements to be made this year that we will not publish here due to the sensitive nature of how we research and offer advice and services to you.

Online Consumer Duties 2023:  Ashley Roberts-Clark (Managing Director FinancialAdvice.net) and his team are continually improving our technology, websites, fee quoting, news, videos, articles etc for you.  Here is a list of improvement plans for far for 2023:

  • Multiple Product Charges/Fees Quote System Update - Completed January 2023.
  • Pop Up prompt notices across site to help all users - Completed February 2023.
  • Client Dashboard new additions – historical access to your messages, documents, past appointments, fees quote, emails, traffic light market alerts and weekly newsletters - In progress.
  • Guidance Videos describing each product/service and fee quotes available from us - In progress.
  • Appointment Diary upgrade offering clients the ability to cancel and rearrange existing bookings.  Scheduled for March 2023.
  • Example/sample client reports for each product/service and fee quote service available from us.  Scheduled for April 2023.
  • Site Search: Add fees shop content to online search facility and make search more accurate for multiple word or phrase search.
  • Simplify and sort news/archive to keep/assign as relative content to other articles, videos, and products i.e., linking relevant news items to subjects that may interest you.
  • Online Fact Find questionnaire with video/guidance notes – making it easier for clients to give us relevant factual information and views for their advice needs.
  • Online ESG questionnaire for clients to better understand and highlight their views on environmentally friendly, socially responsible, and corporate governance/environmental impact improvement investing.
  • Improving our client vulnerability identification process in addition to clients being able in a simple, non-intrusive way to highlight their worries.
  • Simpler advice reports issued securely online with easy:  Read, Acceptance and Action Buttons such as Confirm Fund Switches, Call to Discuss, Authority Letters etc.
  • Jargon dictionary – to make this live again (we stopped this 10 years ago but believe it is needed again) so that for any word that you are not sure what it means you can highlight, and a dictionary definition will appear.

We believe for a two person IFA practice with 3 administrators and one coder/programmer, we offer so much more than many financial services firms and we will continue to try and make your experience with us easier, faster and more enjoyable.

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