Adviser consolidation could leave skills gap

The managing partner of London-based financial services consultancy Harrison Spence said demand for good advisers was outstripping supply and estimated that the ratio of vacancies to experienced advisers qualified to fill them was as high as five to one.

Commenting amid a glut of firm acquisitions from the likes of national wealth manager Bellpenny, Mr Spence said: “If you are one of the remaining 22,000 regulated financial advisers, you should feel confident as your career prospects look much stronger.

“There is a real shortage of talented people who can provide the high levels of personal service that clients have come to expect.”

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Mr Spence added that there was a particular lack of more experienced advisers who can win the confidence of older clients.

He said: “National players often buy a small practice from a retiring adviser. After a handover period, that original adviser leaves the firm and clients can then start to drift away.”

Adviser View

Peter Davies of Cardiff-based advisory firm Create Wealth said: “I would agree that clients do value experience and an ongoing relationship with their adviser. I set up my firm 10 years ago and I still see clients from then, as well as from my time as a bank adviser. The problem is that the traditional route from bank advice to an IFA is now faltering.”