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Openwork to launch exec-only platform

by Jun Merrett on Dec 10, 2012 at 16:45

Openwork to launch exec-only platform

Openwork is launching an execution-only offering for its advisers to cater for less wealthy clients after the retail distribution review (RDR).

The multi-tied network is considering six different models for the offering including web-based, telephone-based or webinar-based services, which will be powered by either Investment Funds Direct Limited or Zurich.

Philip Martin (pictured), propositions and marketing director at Openwork, said: 'We are looking at an execution-only offering as Openwork recognises there is a reasonable proportion of advisers' clients base at risk of being disenfranchised post retail distribution review because of economics.

'We are interested in ways that the adviser can retain their relationship with those clients and deliver a proposition in an appropriate way at an appropriate cost.'

Openwork is the latest advisory firm to offer an execution-only service. Guildford-based IFA firm Informed Choice announced the launch of a platform earlier this month and IFA consolidator Perspective Financial Group unveiled plans for a service in November.

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7 comments so far. Why not have your say?

Stuart Rathbone

Dec 10, 2012 at 17:29

To me the £XX,000 is will they share the revenue with the introducing adviser? Not traditionally what you would expect in these circumstances. If so it could be construed as more tacit acknowledgement that the market will not support the current cohort of RI’s in the new world but the rump of the old DSF still fear they need the RI’s to drive the business into their net (how ever that will work out). Interesting times indeed.

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Ian Lees

Dec 10, 2012 at 17:34

This is great news for advisers old and new. For example ( and I know some people may be fed up with me banging on about the the strategies employed by Scottish Widows - but these now affect all advisers )/ Scottish Widows refuse to provide an agency - and keep all the Trail commissions - for doing absolutely nothing ! These trail commissions some 2.5% are on-going to the end of the contract - and Scottish Wodows are already receiving payment fo rthe work through their charges ( which are not disclosed e.g in with profits ) - and do absolutely nothing for the extra 2.5% per clients - who I had placed with Scottish Widows. Scottish Widows who claim to " own the client and relationship ", can therefore sell on my clients - to (a ) the Scottish Widows direct ( b ) another scottish widows agent ( IFA or tied ) (c) another company or IFA practice - in return for new business. By offering IFA's and tied advisers in this way - clients become the commodities for sale, or gift For example the FSAis aware that Scottish Widows offer my clients to their owner LloydsTSB tied agents ( e.g LloydsTSB Managers ) in return for new business - directed to scottish wodows - immediately breaking the Rules of the FSA - to " treat cusotmers fairly ", or deal with professionalism or integrity - to attract new business from the businesses or the business owners - they have "bribed". Interestingly these will now become more common place - when RDR kicks in - and the commodities of scottish wdows and standard life and NPI etc., are all available for transfer - to those companies and advisers willing to trade and to sell themselves in return for these bribes. We had to undermne the maximum commision terms as a consultant at Scottish Widows - in return for " promises from Brokers, they would provide specific levels of estimated annual premium (EAP ) " in return for higher levels of commissions . Apparently that was " competition ".

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the elephant in the room

Dec 10, 2012 at 18:08

Funny how they refer to these clients as the "advisers' clients". That is certainly not how they see it should you ever choose to leave their network. They will almost certainly redistribute ‘your clients’ amongst your ex colleagues who will then contact ‘your clients’ as ‘their new adviser’. This might result in the new adviser finding a much better solution for your (old) clients which may well result in a claw-back for you. A claw-back Openwork will happily bill you for. This and more, all in the name of TCF of course!

Perhaps, allowing Openwork to market directly to 'your clients' will cut out the need to even bother having to redistribute them to a new adviser as they will already own the relationship.

It is a bit like those unmanned checkouts in Supermarkets designed to replace the need for human beings. Do you not ever see the irony in their staff showing you how not to need a human being in the future?

Be afraid, be very afraid!

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Stuart Rathbone

Dec 11, 2012 at 12:25

Elephant,

The crowbar lives on (said as one of its sons long since left the fold)

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Ian Lees

Dec 12, 2012 at 08:43

The " Crow " bar has every right to " Crow"< about their protection of their clinets ,their customers and the benenfits they put in place for consumers. It is dissapointing so many people including advisers as so dismissive of their great work - providing cash in times of catastrophe - keeping families together because they have paid for protection, to protect their families and their businesses. There are many Independent advisers who do the same - but without the help or assistance or backing of such a company. Unfortunatley there are others who prefer to insult them - attack their professionalism attempt to discredit them for the great work they do . It is a pity some whinging advisers do not try to emulate theri great work - for the benenfit of customers and advisers and product providers.

Merry Christmas - and a happy and prosperous new year to all advisers and product providers - restricted and independent .

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Stuart Rathbone

Dec 12, 2012 at 09:45

Ian,

You too obviously transited SN11EL at some time. Though I did not allude to it in my brief humorous comment I agree with all you said. I will always hold up their professionalism in training and dedication to all we do. Sadly if you such as I spent any length of time there you will have come across your fair share of shysters who sadly besmirch the name of the institution and they are the ones that are remembered.

I owe my carrier to AD training selling more than my fair share of protection and though I never graced the top tables I also did not attract the opprobrium of clients, many of which I still act for twenty plus years later.

For instance allegations of clients sold annual pension contributions instead of singles was one of the alleged tricks of the trade that I have seen floated around, which sadly would not surprise me (though I have no evidence of such for all the lawyers out there).

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Ian Lees

Dec 12, 2012 at 10:07

Stuart

Not only did I "transit SN1 iEL ", I remained in Situ - on training courses, recognised as some of the best in the industry. Your allegations of singles being sold as regulars ( I assume you mean for the 60% commissions for the first two years ) - meant that some consumers continued with theri premiums . . . to their advantage ( in making significant and regular payments ) into their retirement plans . . .in days when " units were cheap ". Captail units turned into initial units at the Selected retiremetn age - making clients and consumers earn their rewards. Interestingly I was engaged with the misselling of far worse situations at Scottish Widows - e.g with profit plans - or giving out illustrations to IFA's - with the commision page loose ( when the rest of the illustration was stapled ) - to allow dodgy Brokers opportunites to leave it out ! IF you wish to discuss the charging structures - I would highlight the extraordinary charges - applied by Stabndard Life - on Exectutive Pension Plans - and the Directors and Chairman - refuse to provide clear infomration. When challenged Standard Life terminate agencies to " New Business", as being a commercial decision. This has an impact on Fidelity - who are controlled by Sanfdard Life. So for example Fidelity are given a pension to invest - standard life says No ! So fiedelity cannot take new business - Put simply, the shysters are inherent in the insurance indusrty - and not as you appear to think Allied Dunbar. Many advisers work with their clients - but are prevented from working by the poor controls and profiteering by the few at the top ie Directors and FSA regulators - who have turned their blind eyes to these frauds and the " commercial activites " of insurance companies ripping of clients . . . for decades. Now scottish widows operates through banks, with high charges and product flogging. Let us hope Mr Wheatley deals with these product flogging salespeople - who are not committed and do not take their job as Financial Planners or Independent IFA's seriously. These are the commison flogging people. I worked with Hambro Life and was trained by Hambro Life. I moved to Scottish Widows and where for six years - I received 3 ( yes ! Three and a half days training ) - and the half day was an exam - to sell direct to the public - when scottish widows tried to put in place atheri direct salesforce ( now in place at TSB branches ). It is great to hear you have been looking after your clients for so long - with protection and investment planning at the heart of your operation. There is no heart or soul in money lenders - and banks fixing interest rates - and misselling products e.g Leeds building society flogging Endowment Plan 10 ( VEP ) - at churches on SUndays in Kirkcaldy - hom of Gordon Brown ( gold salesman ).

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