Advanced apprenticeship scheme awaits approval

An apprenticeship scheme for trainee financial advisers, designed by the Financial Services Skills Council, is in the process of being approved by the Apprenticeship Approval Group.

The Advanced Apprenticeship in Advising on Financial Products, targeted at 16 to 25 year-olds, will train IFAs and anyone offering financial advice to consumers from bank call centre staff to insurance company employees.

The apprenticeship framework includes the appropriate Financial Services Authority exam such as the Certificate in Mortgage Advice and Practice, literacy and numeracy units and a level three award in competency in offering advice to customers.

If firms meet external quality assurance standards they will be able to assess staff themselves or buy in assessors from specialist training providers.

If the apprenticeship is approved by the Skills Business Network it may be eligible for full government funding.

A spokeswoman for Nationwide, which was involved in a pilot for the apprenticeship, says: “We would definitely consider adopting this permanently if approved.”