I actually did my A Levels in accountancy and was intending on doing an accountancy apprenticeship, until saw an opportunity for a business administration apprenticeship in financial services.
After being offered an interview I did a bit of research, and met with Karl Pemberton, who is now MD of Active. I was very impressed with the vision of the company and liked the idea of being involved with a company where there would be opportunities and positive change in moving forward.
I am currently working as a chartered financial planner and paraplanning manager. I work closely with our team of paraplanners and ensure all research and financial planning recommendations are prepared in a timely and accurate manner. I also help both the paraplanners and other advisers answering any technical queries they may have.
In addition to this, I undertake several specialist roles within the company, including ensuring our due diligence on the companies recommended is up to date, and I am a pension transfer specialist for the firm.
I have been working alongside Paul for a number of years now, and I can certainly see how he has helped me. I have gained a great deal of technical knowledge through studying towards my chartered status, and Paul has supported me throughout.
He is my line manager and supervisor, and we have formal one-to-one meeting as well as more informal meetings to discuss certain cases, and to ensure standards are maintained across the company in the advice given. I have always had the desire to push towards attaining chartered status, although without the support of the firm, I doubt I would have achieved it at the age I did. Paul was my key mentor in guiding me through the exam pathway, and also assisted with training on the client-facing and soft skills side of the job, which isn’t taught in the exams.
As director and chartered financial planner (fellow), I work as part of the leadership team on the strategic direction of the business. I service a portfolio of ‘high net worth’ clients, and I am also the ‘responsible member’ for the Chartered Insurance Institute, the body which awards chartered status.
Supporting and encouraging the team to personally develop is a key part of my role. This has been recognised by Investors In People awarding us Gold Status.
At Active, we recruit highly-experienced individuals however, just as importantly, we recruit those who have just left school or higher education. Our staff are our greatest asset and we recognise the importance of investing in our people to help them develop their careers.
I first met Andrew when I joined Active in 2009. He worked in the administration team at the time. He had a hunger to work, was keen to learn and develop himself personally, and most of all, had that ‘will do’ positive attitude.
As a company, we have invested in him and supported him through his exams and, eight years later, he is a chartered financial planner and fellow of the Chartered Insurance Institute.
As Andrew’s line manager and supervisor, we have a formal meetings and continuous professional development (CPD) forms part of this process. In addition, Andrew has a Training Needs Analysis, which is updated on an annual basis to ensure specific learning objectives are met.
On a more informal basis, Andrew and I tend to meet on an ad-hoc basis where I can provide necessary coaching when needed. We discuss client cases that we are both working on, and we work closely together on various projects within the business. I encourage Andrew to provide input where possible and value his feedback.
Andrew is now one of our most qualified members of staff. With the experience he will gain with Active in the coming years, he has the potential to become one of our most senior financial planners.
Active Chartered Financial Planners