Gold Standard Independent Financial Advice
At the annual ceremony to mark some of the very best companies working within financial services in the UK we were very pleased to be awarded a Gold Standard Award for Financial Advice, our seventh consecutive award in this category. We have also previously won Gold Standard Awards for Discretionary Portfolio Management as well as Wealth Management. We were one of only six independent financial advisory companies to achieve this demanding standard in 2015. The picture above shows Petronella picking up our award on behalf of the whole team at the Houses of Parliament.
“We have always felt it right and appropriate to have our services measured”
At Investment Quorum we have always felt it right and appropriate to have our services measured by leading benchmarking organisations within our sector and the Gold Standard judging process is one of the most comprehensive and detailed of all of the various awards and benchmarking within UK financial services. This is because we constantly strive to improve our service and offering to clients and being benchmarked against other leading companies is a great way to see how we are doing. This builds upon the regular feedback we receive from clients about our wealth management offering.
The Gold Standard Awards are open to UK-based financial services groups or specialist financial companies offering their own products and services.
The categories currently accepted for consideration are fund management, wealth management, discretionary portfolio management, independent financial advice, group pensions, individual pensions, retirement, protection and insurance and banks. As you can see this is a very wide cross-section of the UK financial services landscape.
“Very few companies make the grade”
The awards do not operate a winner and highly commended system. All those who pass the appropriate measurements and judging can achieve a Gold Standard. However, over the years very few companies actually make the grade which is why we are so pleased to be a consistent and consecutive winner of this highly coveted award.
Products and services can be aimed at the UK retail market directly or via professional advisers and companies wishing to enter the Gold Standard Award scheme must complete a detailed questionnaire, which has been constructed using the knowledge of industry experts and take a ‘five pillar’ approach to assessment.
The five pillars of measurement
This has been defined in terms of the financial ability of the entrant organisation to meet what its customers reasonably expect through its ability to survive in an appropriate form. The differences between the provider types under consideration will be taken into account. Providers are rated among their peer sector, rather than as a global population of entrants.
This area looks at the overall expertise of the company to conduct the business category entered. Typical elements taken into consideration include business structure, staff expertise and training.
This assesses the ability of the company to maintain an effective pre and post-sales relationship with the distributor and/or consumer. Typical areas assessed are forms of communication, quality and levels of service on offer.
This assesses whether the customer is obtaining value for money by comparing charges and benefits against a typical range of products for the category entered. Companies offering specialist products only will be assessed against similar groups.
The ability of a company to promote confidence through the customer experience, the media, advertising and marketing. Judges will be looking for a coherent message, which is transmitted not only to customers but within the company itself. Attention is paid to the ethical use of product literature and performance as well as the adoption of corporate governance standards and social responsibility.
How the Gold Standards judging process works
The Gold Standard Awards assess financial strength, capability, service, fair value and trust in a variety of methods including information supplied by entrants in the form of questionnaires and evidence, as well as the use of third party sources to assess areas such as financial strength and fair value.
An independent panel of expert judges assess entries. The award judges also use certain outside agencies such as AKG Actuaries & Consultants to determine the financial strength of entrants in all categories.
We trust that this continues to reassure you that our wealth management and financial advice offering is of the highest possible calibre and has been measured as such. If you would like to find out more about our multi-award winning wealth management service please do not hesitate to contact us or call us on 0207 337 1390, we would be very happy to discuss your requirements.
Lee Robertson, CEO
Lee is a Chartered Wealth Manager and is listed in the definitive Spears Wealth Management Index as one of the UK’s top 10 wealth managers and was named as the Asset Manager of the Year for High Net Worth Investors in the 2015 Spear’s Wealth Management Awards. His uncompromising standards in private client wealth management means he is a regular contributor to the financial press and is often on television discussing wealth management and investment issues.
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Brilliant news for the team to have our efforts on behalf of our clients recognised https://t.co/nZN6O1fXdl
— InvestmentQuorum (@IQWealth) November 26, 2015