Mystery Shopper: Bracknell

Each week the mystery shopper seeks advice from independent advisers in the UK. The aim is to find out whether advisers are delivering the goods when it comes to the all-important initial telephone contact between client and adviser. It is only intended to evaluate this first interview, and it is understood that further meetings would be necessary before final decisions could be made. The purpose is not to expose poor selling practices, but to show constructively any weaknesses in the advice process.

Mystery Shopper: Bracknell

Each week the mystery shopper seeks advice from independent and tied advisers in the UK. The aim is to find out whether advisers are delivering the goods when it comes to the all-important initial telephone contact between client and adviser. It is only intended to evaluate this first interview, and it is understood that further meetings would be necessary before final decisions could be made. The purpose is not to expose poor selling practices but to show constructively any weaknesses in the advice process. 

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Adviser (Independent) 

Chiltern House Limited in Eastern Road, Bracknell, Berkshire, RG12 2XB

Speed of response: Time of call: 11.35am. Rang twice before it was answered. Caller’s details taken. IFA called within the hour.  4/5

Telephone manner: Very friendly and polite. 

Relevant qualifications: IFAs are fully qualified, including Diploma in Financial Planning.

Payment method: Commission or fee, depending on the product.

Guidance given: When the IFA called back, he was professional and friendly. He suggested it was best to set up a meeting to discuss the best course of action. He suggested the meeting would take an hour and said he was willing to meet in the evenings, if the client needed to do so. He said the meeting would help gauge the client’s financial situation and expectations so that the adviser can do the relevant fact find and suggest suitable products available. 

Knowledge: It was very clear that the IFA was professional and experienced. He clearly explained the process, cost and the role of advice.

Email/web presence:

www.the-chp.co.uk

info@the-chp.co.uk

Verdict

This is clearly a very professional and well-run firm. The phone was answered quickly, and although the IFA was not free at the time, the call was returned within the hour. The IFA was experienced and clearly explained the process, cost and role of advice.  

33/35

 

Adviser (Independent) 

Regency Financial Consultancy in Broome Court, Bracknell, Berkshire, RG12 7AB

Speed of response: Time of call: 11.46am. One ring before call was answered.  

Telephone manner: Friendly receptionist and professional and helpful IFA. 

Relevant qualifications: Caller spoke to firm’s partner and IFA Deborah Cooke, who has a Diploma in Financial Planning (CII). 

Payment method: No fee for initial consultation. But commission is taken on protection products.      

Guidance given: The adviser said the caller would need to visit the offices for a meeting. During the consultation, the mystery shopper’s financial situation and requirements would be evaluated to find a suitable deal. The IFA mentioned that the client would have to bring in some form of identification, such as a passport, and mentioned that for protection products, the firm would be able to charge a commission. 

Knowledge: Although advice would only be given after a consultation, it was clear from the IFA’s telephone manner that she was experienced and knowledgeable.