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Senior citizens are designing their own coffins in preparation for their death

Coffin Clubs have become a thing in a number of towns around New Zealand for senior citizens. They use it as a way to make friends all while making their own coffins. Partners Life sponsors this content on Vice, but it is written by staff. It is a good example of the content strategy for online engagement being used by brands that have complex purchase processes - almost the exact opposite of the immediate response approach demanded by many direct-to-consumer brands.  Although the elderly are not the target market for most insurers, it isn't the target market for Vice either - the readership of this kind of article is likely to be diverse. 

Click here to read more.

Insurance and superannuation roles - salary trends

Seek have released this article showing NZ's biggest pay rises and falls in the last year. There are two roles in the 'Insurance and Superannuation' industry which saw big increases. 'Risk Consulting' was up 34% and 'Fund Administration' was up 32%, while 'Management' roles in the industry dropped 7% with the annual full-time salary averaging $105,230.

nib adviser support group

Since 24th of June nib has been presenting around the country to promote the 1 July launch of their new adviser distribution model. 

“From on the ground dedicated support teams to improved join processes and servicing capability, our focus is on putting advisers and their clients at the heart of everything we do to deliver a world-class experience,” nib chief executive officer Rob Hennin said. 

Click here to read more.

Congratulations to Pinnacle Life on being granted a digital advice exemption

The FMA has granted Pinnacle Life a digital advice exemption. Congratulations to Gillian Vaughan and her team, in particular Amy Cavanaugh who has been driving this project forward. From the media release:

General Manager Operations Amy Cavanaugh says the provision of digital advice will extend Pinnacle Life’s existing online service to customers, offering a flexible approach to personalised advice.

“We know our customers are busy people, so we thought about how we could provide advice in a flexible, personalised, easy-to-access way. The new digital advice platform we are developing will enable customers to make informed decisions about insurance through tailored, real-time digital advice, whenever and wherever they want it.

The Chatswood team has been privileged to be a part of this project. Our prior contributions to online processes have tended to be data services. This project is a further step forward as it has been for a personalised digital advice process. I would like to recognise Shaun Dowler, who provides data science consulting as part of our team has been particularly valuable in pushing ahead this work for Chatswood. 

The announcement says that the service will be launched later this year. 

Demystify licensing - understanding what is required for an RFA to remain in practice

We understand that there are a number of RFA’s who are unsure where to start at all, so we are running a webinar aimed at assisting them to stay in practice while they work through their options and plan their own way forward.

Through our webinar, we will outline the steps RFAs have to take to stay in business as adviser. Through our educational approach, we will simply outline what is needed to either maintain a job as an adviser or develop a plan for having independent choice. Without personal bias, we will provide a comprehensive checklist of the steps which we expect will be required for full licensing, and the timeline for achieving all things on the checklist.

Remaining in Practice for RFA's

Date:           19 July 2019

Time:           10.30 a.m.

Cost:            $75 (+ GST)

Duration:    1 hour

Click here to register

Why advisers don't score as well as direct insurers for client satisfaction, and that's okay

Contrast my experiences recently around food. Last Saturday night Fran and I ate at Carmen Jones on Karangahape Road. They do great tapas. They show us a menu, we read it, and they say 'excellent choice' and head off to the kitchen to make the order. After eating the meal I was very satisfied. Had consumer magazine phoned me up to ask how much, the score would have been pretty darned high. Seriously, its a great place, I recommend it.

We also see a nutritionist, who weighs, measures, and questions us about our eating. As our adviser, she routinely challenges us to do better. Good advice often requires a change in behaviour. In food it is often 'back off dessert, boost up the salads'. Sometimes we leave her office feeling a bit chastened and even, at times, a bit defensive. I happen to think she gives excellent advice, but compared to how I feel right after a lovely meal, it is nothing like as satisfying. 

I believe that great financial advice works similarly. When it is done right, it is challenging, not necessarily satisfying.

It also generates good results. 

ASIC data on claims outcomes finds that clients that seek financial advice tend to get their claims accepted more often.

Our own regulator, the FMA, gets many, many more complaints about insurers, than financial advisers.

Both suggest that the picture painted by the consumer survey of client satisfaction is insufficient. Not wrong, merely incomplete. If commissions were the biggest problem we have, these results would not, and could not, co-exist. Of course, this is useful information. No adviser, insurer, or management consultant should ignore information like this - it has lessons to contribute all around the segment. But the world is a complicated, messy place, and the story of the insurance sector is bigger and more interesting than this. 

Demystify licensing - understanding what is required to be licensed as a financial advice provider

There’s a lot of talk around the licensing pathway, and it is getting more complicated than ever for advisers who would prefer to maintain in control of their advice practice.

Advisers will need to prepare their practice in advance of any licence application with all expected policies, processes, and controls in place. While also maintaining a governance system, financial controls and reporting, and ensuring that there are protocols and procedures in place.

We have identified and mapped out:

  • At least eight things which will have to be done and in place if you wish to be allowed to continue practicing just as an adviser in the short term
  • 15 more things you need to complete before the end of the Transitional Licensing period if you wish to stay in business as an adviser, although not necessarily with your own licence
  • And 23 more things you are required to fulfill if you want to be able to successfully apply for your own licence and retain your independence as a business owner by the Transitional Licensing period.

Barry Read, Russell Hutchinson and Tony Vidler have put together a practical webinar in the key decision points and options for New Zealand financial advisers considering their licensing choices.

Through this webinar, you will be presented with neutral arguments. With no promotion of any models or providers. Instead, you will be provided with a genuine strategic approach that gives your adviser business probable options.

During the webinar, we will provide a comprehensive checklist of the various practice management, advice process, and regulatory issues which we expect will be required for full licensing.

The NZ Adviser' Licensing Decision Pathway Webinar

Date:         5 July 2019

Time:        10.30 a.m.

Cost:          $75 (+ GST)

Duration:   1 hour

Click here to register