Your Industry  

VouchedFor reaches 100,000 verified reviews

VouchedFor reaches 100,000 verified reviews

Advice review website VouchedFor has reached 100,000 verified client reviews hosted on its platform.

Alex Whitson, VouchedFor’s managing director, said: "Reaching 100,000 reviews is a significant milestone. It underlines the commitment of thousands of advisers and clients to add transparency to the advice process.

"We recognise that reviews, in isolation, are not enough. We’re continually building on our checks and monitoring. The ultimate aim of these and the 2019 campaign with The Times is to give consumers confidence when choosing an adviser, and help them avoid scammers."

VouchedFor verifies reviews using a combination of an algorithm and manual investigations. The website also requires advisers to confirm each reviewer is a client before seeing the content of the review.

Mr Whitson said this stopped advisers only accepting positive reviews and ensuring that they were held accountable.

He added: "November 2018 is set to be VouchedFor’s biggest ever month in terms of reviews posted."

The British Steel fiasco has prompted calls to make it easier for consumers to check financial advisers' credentials.

The Financial Conduct Authority's register was the target of criticism in one of the hearings in Parliament, with steelworkers struggling to use it to find a suitable financial adviser.

Frank Field, the chairman of the Work and Pensions select committee, said the register was "clearly confusing" and was designed with the industry rather than consumers in mind.

Philip Hanley has become one of the most reviewed advisers on VouchedFor, with a rating of 4.8 starts out of 5, and his firm, Philip James Financial Services, offers advice on ethical investing.

He said an increasing number of clients were looking for ethical investing, particularly the millennial generation.

"But advisers often tell me they try to talk clients out of ethical investment because it complicates things for them and they have to do extra research. [Clients] perceive that’s higher risk, but that’s a lack of understanding," he said.