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Should paraplanners be doing more to promote paraplanning as a profession?

28 May 2018

In a recent parameters survey, we asked you if you thought paraplanners should be doing more to promote the profession.

The overwhelming majority of respondents said yes.

The survey found 72% of you felt more should be done to promote paraplanning, while just 11% said no and 17% were unsure.

Amongst those in favour, many thought that active targeting a younger age group was a key action to highlight paraplanning as a solid career path. Suggestions included participating in careers fairs, school events and graduate schemes, as well communicating more closely with colleges and universities.

Others favoured greater inclusion in software used by school to help pupils choose potential careers, and the introduction of specific financial planning courses at A-level and university to mirror professions such as law and accountancy.

Respondents also recommended greater emphasis on the qualifications required for a job in paraplanning, explaining the difference between a client-facing advice role and back office researchers / paraplanners.

Many felt there should be greater emphasis on the high technical expertise required, as well as excellent organisational and research skills needed, to enable people to better understand the role and in-depth knowledge acquired.

There was also a call for more to be done both via professional bodies and financial advisers. Paraplanners felt the industry would benefit from bodies such as the PFS, CII and CISI co-producing material explaining the role and different routes into the profession, while some suggested there should be a PR campaign by the professional bodies focussed on universities and schools. In parallel, more should be done to explain the role to clients and promote paraplanning within financial adviser networks.

Financial adviser groups could be doing more, it was felt, by taking people in at school leaver and graduate level, potentially via apprenticeships, and developing a clear career path within the company, so that people could see the opportunities.

Having the Paraplanning Standard as a route into the profession was also seen as a positive way to bring more people into the profession.

Those surveyed also felt that paraplanners themselves should be doing more to promote their own profession, having more interaction with social media platforms, media outlets and dedicated paraplanning websites/magazines.

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