Advisers should review their record keeping processes ahead of the implementation of the Senior Mangers and Certification Regime later this year, a mortgage distributor has urged.
The SMCR is currently in place for the banking sector but is due to be rolled out to the wider financial services industry in December, replacing accountability rules for advisers under the Financial Conduct Authority's current Approved Persons Regime.
Under the new regime, senior individuals performing key roles need FCA approval before starting work and receive a 'statement of responsibilities' that clearly says what they are responsible and accountable for.
Paradigm Mortgage Services urged advisers to ensure their "action plan" on implementing SMCR was tight and their record keeping in particular complied with the new rules.
In a new guide for advisers the firm recommended a recorded agenda was used at meetings to discuss a company's plans under the regime, which should demonstrate key requirements are being taken seriously and actioned.
Bob Hunt, chief executive of Paradigm Mortgage Services, said: "The SMCR is all about leadership and culture within a regulated advisory firm and the clear expectation is that business owners take the lead in this, not only taking responsibility for their own actions but also leading their entire firm.
"It also means that every member of staff who interacts with a customer or performs a role that could affect the outcome of any advice or services provided to that customer must meet a certain standard of behaviour set by the business owners, and that they adhere to the conduct rules at all times."
Mr Hunt said the guide was designed to steer companies in the right direction to begin work on SMCR requirements.
He added: "Given this is an industry-wide issue, we're very pleased to make this available to all intermediary firms as part of our ongoing support to firms ahead of SMCR."