The educational syllabus offers three pathways based on advisers’ levels of experience, designed to guide their development journey by benchmarking their knowledge and skills as well as signposting materials to support their progress.
The Council worked closely with specialists across the sector to produce six modules which have each been piloted in the field. It said the modules encompass all areas needed to advise consumers effectively and focus on understanding the industry, market, clients, soft skills, products, and processes.
Donna Bathgate, chief operating officer of the Equity Release Council, (pictured) said: “Property wealth is increasingly part of consumers’ thinking when they make later life financial plans, so it is vital to ensure the service they receive is of a consistently high standard as the market grows.
“The potential for unlocking property wealth should be on every homeowner’s retirement checklist to consider alongside appropriate advice to weigh up all the options and implications. The competency framework is the Council’s latest initiative to help firms and their advisers develop a 360-degree view of today’s market and ensure the best possible outcomes for consumers.”
And the other industry contributors for sharing their knowledge and experience to benefit the wider advice community.
Alice Watson, head of marketing, Canada Life Insurance, said: “As the market continues to evolve, we are proud to have been involved in developing this framework with the Equity Release Council from the beginning and look forward to seeing it develop over the coming years.”
In the last 12 months, the trade body has supported advice standards in a raft of ways, including updating its checklist for advisers and publishing an updated good practice guide. In 2020, 100 advice firms joined the council as its adviser membership grew by 35 per cent to 448 organisations.