Chartered Insurance Institute  

CII says industry needs to 'sing from same hymn sheet’

CII says industry needs to 'sing from same hymn sheet’

The Chartered Insurance Institute has said both insurance and personal finance professionals need to be in sync to meet the regulator’s consumer duty requirements.

Speaking at the Ambassadors in Action conference today (May 16), CII president Peter Blanc began by reflecting on how the Financial Conduct Authority's consumer duty puts the onus on industry members to demonstrate customers and clients understand the products they purchase and advice they receive.

Blanc said both insurance and personal finance professionals should “be singing from the same hymn sheet” and highlighting the value of advice if they want to meet the regulator’s consumer duty requirements.

“The only way for consumers to be confident that they have purchased products suitable for their needs, and that will truly respond when the chips are down, is for a professional adviser to help them through the transaction,” he said.

“The importance of advice and professionalism and consumer trust is common across general insurance and financial planning, and this should be the common thread which joins the Chartered Insurance Institute and Personal Finance Society.”

Volunteers who lead the CII’s 56 local institutes, 26 PFS regional committees and five membership societies met at the conference in Birmingham to reflect on their shared purpose and good practice in supporting members.

At the conference, volunteers heard how the CII’s wider membership used the 'Shaping the future together' consultation to call for a common strategy, clear purpose and objectives for local institutes, regional committees and societies.

Blanc said: “Encouraging collaboration between insurance and personal finance volunteers for the benefit of the entire membership has got to be a good thing and it is particularly topical this year as, would you believe it’s the 125th anniversary of the forming of the Federation of Insurance Institutes that would later be granted a Royal Charter and eventually become the CII.

“It would quite literally be impossible to deliver the aims and objectives of the CII without the selfless support of our volunteer community up and down the country.”

Meanwhile, PFS president Sarah Lord considered how both the professions recognise the importance of attracting and retaining talent to ensure there are more qualified individuals able to raise public trust in protection and financial planning.

Lord said: “We learn so much by coming together, sharing good practice and reflecting on how our synergies across the two distinct professions can benefit society.

“Our hundreds of volunteers, who contribute their time and expertise, are vital to keeping the Personal Finance Society and CII modern, relevant and diverse.

“Volunteers are vital to ensuring the Personal Finance Society and Chartered Insurance Institute are practitioner-led and I applaud their efforts.”

Also at the conference CII interim chief executive officer Jonathan Clark, thanked volunteers for pulling on their reserves last year rather than taking additional grant payments.

This action helped the professional body achieve a consolidated operating surplus of £3.3mn in 2021, compared with a £4mn operating deficit in 2020, as reported last week.