The Advice Process
The introduction to our services confirmed our straightforward approach to providing financial advice. This is summarised in the document "The KeyFacts about the cost of our services" (190KB).
The "KeyFacts" documentation is, however, limited in the amount of information that we are able to communicate. We are therefore pleased to be able to explain the advice process in greater detail.
We are committed to the consistent delivery of a process that reflects the best practices of the modern, professional financial services market.
We do, however, recognise the need for flexibility and the ability to adapt the advice process to suit a client's particular circumstances at any one time - an example of this might be a client's request to 'execute' a specific transaction. Whenever such a change is necessary, we will ensure that you are aware of the possible impact on our advice.
Essentially, we recommend a logical sequence that will usually include the following stages:
Prior to providing advice, we need to take reasonable steps to 'get to know' you.
Our primary objectives will be to establish and prioritise your financial planning needs and objectives, whilst also agreeing your attitude to the risks involved.
We will explain the full scope of our advice and provide appropriate warnings should you request we limit our advice to one or more needs.
Relevant information will be recorded in a Confidential Financial Review document (often referred to as a "Fact Find").
The link to "Assessing Your Needs" above provides further information.
Prior to making any specific recommendations, we need to be confident that our advice is the most appropriate based on our assessment of your needs.
We will therefore require a period of time to review and research the market place to establish the most appropriate solutions to your needs and objectives.
Once we have completed our research, we will contact you to arrange a further meeting to discuss our recommendations.
The link to "Research" above provides further information.
This part of the advice process will normally involve a separate meeting to the initial stage when we assess your needs.
Our priority will be to ensure that our recommendations are clearly focused on solving the financial planning needs established previously.
When making our recommendations, we understand that you may accept all of them, some of them or none of them.
As such, there will be no obligation on your behalf to purchase any products that form part of our recommendations.
The link to "Recommendation" above provides further information.
We understand that communication is a wonderful process...
...when it happens!
Our Service Standard of communicating in "terms that are clear, concise and easily-understood" can be extended to include being regular and timely. We will be particularly mindful of this during the periods when we are not in direct contact with you. Throughout the advice process, we will provide appropriate feedback and report on progress being made in line with agreed actions.
The focus on achieving this Service Standard extends to all forms of communication, whether verbal, written or electronic.
The link to "Communication" above provides further information.
The advice process is completed by our offer to you of on-going advice and service.
Our introduction to The Chester Partnership confirmed that a significant part of our work is generated by either our clients' evolving needs or from introductions from such clients. In order to maintain this approach, we appreciate the importance of offering, and then delivering, a service that meets your on-going needs and expectations.
We understand that our individual clients' needs do differ and can therefore only be met by our offering of a wide-ranging 'menu' of bespoke services.
A discussion to agree your on-going service requirements will form a natural part of the conclusion to the advice process.
The link to "On-Going Service" above provides further information.